Deciding to jump

My kid Ian has been riding for almost exactly one year, and we’ve spent most of that year perfecting his pump on an Intense BMX 20 and cruiser. Just recently, Ian decided it was time to jump. He commandeered my P.3, and now it’s on, baby, ON!

Ian’s pumping form is darn near flawless.

Here he sucks up the bike and projects his body straight through the set. The ability to do this with balance and consistency is, according to my school of teaching, the main prerequisite for jumping.

Ian has been rocking this style for a while, and I’ve been telling him he’s ready to jump whenever he wants to. No rush or pressure, but when you feel the urge, be confident that you have the skills.

We were at the Gunbarrel jumps last week and — bam! — there it was.

Right on Ian. Well done!

The morals of this story
1) If you can’t pump smoothly and consistently, don’t even think about jumping.

2) If you CAN pump smoothly and consistently, chances are you’re ready to start playing with small, safely built jumps.

3) Take everything one step at a time. And have fun at every step.

Passing on the Braaap,

— Lee

10 replies
  1. eason says:

    With a coach like you, he’s ready for some of the bigger stuff at GB. Has he hit comeback yet? A little peer pressure is my prescription for progression.

  2. Walt says:

    He looks good and Lee’s right: build it up gradually – get the base skills down first. I should know because I didn’t go that route and spend a lot of time recovering from injuries from jumping stuff I had no business jumping at my current skill level when I could have been riding my bike. Just one question though, why does he need the P3? Either of the BMX bikes would have been every bit as good in my opinion.

  3. Tyler says:

    That is inspiring! I think I am at a similar point….feeling comfortable with my ability to pump the terrain on the local trails and ‘getting the urge’ to start jumping and expanding my riding. The jump areas in my area seem fairly sketchy/dangerous so I guess I’ll have to build a ‘my first tabletop jump’….it should be interesting to explain to friends and family that I want to get into dirt jumping as a 30-something! I feel like Benjamin Button.

  4. Will says:

    Hey Tyler, I just left my thirties this year and celebrated by buying a nice hard tail so I can get into pumping and jumping. Your never to old to progress and have fun!

  5. leelikesbikes says:

    Walt: the P. is more forgiving than a BMX bike. The movements are slower, the cases are softer, and there’s more confidence in general.

    MW: Yeah man, he’s already rocking the Chevy Tahoe.

  6. leelikesbikes says:

    I am turning 40 this summer, and I feel I’m just figuring this stuff out! It’s an awesome, constant process of discovery and refinement.

    Thought I knew at 20 … no.

    Thought I knew at 25 … no.

    Thought I knew at 30 … no.

    Thought I knew at 35 … no.

    Think I’ll know at 40 … probably not!

  7. Ian says:

    Dude that is soooo awesome……I mean your boy…..and that location, wish we had something like that here……oh and he has a rockin name!!!!!

  8. Andrew says:

    Glad to see that guys like Tyler, Will & Lee are 40 – ish. I’ll be 41 next month, & built up my DMR Trailstar last December.

Comments are closed.