Originally posted by wheelie_steve
I saw the previous thread on stoppies and would like to start learning how to do better ones. I'm not gonna lie, I am pretty scared to do full blown stoppies. Every now and then I will lift the back tire up pretty high but I haven't been able to ride any. I was looking forward to learning last summer until I flipped my bike forward trying to stop to avoid someone who pulled out in front of me. The end result was two broken arms and a completely wrecked bike. I love doing lengthy standup wheelies, but something doesn't seem right to me when going on the front wheel. How can I start doing stoppies!!!! I know you can help me out with this one road stain.
It would be my pleasure. Basically, it's all about getting the feel for them. Since you've had a bad experience it's gonna leave you hesitant. And you're gonna have to get over that... so you'll be shakey at first. The way I learned (and I'm not incredible at them. Personal best is only 208 feet) was to start with pop-a-stoppies. Basically just get rolling, and snap the rear end up. usually ending in a stop and the bike comming up. Just getting the feel for the way it comes up and the sensation it gives you. What helps a lot is to get someone with a video camera (or put it on a tripod and keep stopping in front of it if you're like me and have no friends.) This gives you an idea of how high you're getting. Since you're experienced in wheelies, you know that it may seem like you're really really high, but you're only a foot off the ground. I kept doing them over and over and over until I got used to it comming up and figured out how much brake I needed to apply to get the rear to come up. Also where that sweet balance/floating spot was. After I had pretty much mastered that, I went on to the rolling part. But here's where it gets tricky.
To roll them out, you have to add speed. Speed brings a lot of variables into it. Say for example, You come in for the stoppie, you squeeze on the brake and throw your weight forward. But, your body position was a bit off. This causes the bike to come up at a weird angle. If you're doing pop-a-stoppies its no big deal because you just let go of the brake and the bike comes down and you're stopped. But when you're goin faster and rolling, you come up at a weird angle and when you put it doin, the bars are goin crazy. sometimes it'll throw you into a tank slapper, but almost always the end result isn't that great. That is why I suggest doin pop-a-stoppies first. to make sure you have body position and brake control on lock. Also, a steering damper helps a lot for stoppies. And once you get them down pretty well, it's almost a must have to roll them out nice and long. Plus they're just nice to have anyway. I've duffed a few while learning, but hey, thats just the way it goes. I think I did a little write up on how to do rolling stoppies a la stain. But, I will redo it just because I've really got nothin better to do than troll SBW and shine my boots
1. Check your bike. Good pads, clean rotors, no blown fork seals, cables nice and tight, tire pressure lowered about 5 psi (same idea as with the wheelies) fluid all topped off, maybe even purchase some braided lines (helps a lot!)
2. Check your spot. Nice clean road. Brush off any dirt, dust, pebbles, glass. You know, anything that could aid to a bad day. Make sure you have permission to be wherever you are, or you won't be messed with. Traffic is a minimum or non existant. I suggest learning in an empty parking lot. Or back ass country roads that only tractors use. But keeping off the streets just keeps you out of trouble.
3. Gear up!! Gloves, helmet, jacket, nice tough jeans or leather maybe if you have them. You'd be supprised how bad you can get torn up from a simple endo or wash out. Trust me!
4. Now that you're all set, it's time to make it happen. Hopefully you're nice and experienced with your pop-a-stoppies. But I'll run throught it anyway. Sit up close to the tank. 1st gear, run it out to about 10-15 mph, squeeze the brakes and load the forks, then give them a gentle "snap" to bring the rear up. Don't rush it. I know I said snap, but it's more of a quick pull. You're not trying to lock them up. At the same time that you give that extra tug, lift your ass off the seat and lean forward. Keep your head up though. Look where you're going, not at the ground. Keep at it till you can get the rear to come up to a nice floating stop before it comes crashing down. Don't over do it. take it slow. It's not a race. Better to start at only 6 inches and progress than to go balls out and flip it over on you, Don't worry about the annoying kachunk/snap sound it makes when you put it down. It's just the chain slapping or your kickstand clicking from the force. Sounds a lot worse than it is. Continue this until you can get that perfect stoppie form every time.
5. Now you're ready for some rollin. You're gonna do the same thing as before. Except this time add some more speed. bring it to 25-30 mph. Load the forks with a gentle squeeze of the front brake, then in one smooth motion shift your weight up and add more braking force. Once you get close to that floating spot that you've grown to recognize, ease up on the brake. Stay on them, just not as hard. The constant brake pressure will keep it from dropping, but since you're not full on it won't lock it up and flip. Same as before, start slow. Don't overdue it. You can always add more pressure, but you can't take it back after you've gone too far.
6. Practice. It won't come to you right away. Just keep at it and every day you'll get better. and the better you get the more you'll like it. Some days you'll kill it, then the next day you'll come out and nothin will seem to work. Thats the way it goes. Don't give up. Eventually they'll just come natural. No thought required.
Good luck. If you need help with anything don't hesitate to ask. Stay safe. and have fun!
(hope you have some good frame sliders, maybe a cage on your bike. Learning = drops. Just my