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Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas BikeTrials and Trouble with a Pair of Reebok

Earlier this week I received a text message from Syarul to go riding trials on Christmas day. I had to turn him down as I was not mobile due to a bad car accident a few weeks ago that put my pick-up in the workshop.

My last biketrial outing was to the Shah Alam Xtreme park and since then, I had only been riding in and around my house. I missed a happening MTB hash in Putrajaya and a BikeTrial demonstration event opposite the Tesco in Shah Alam last weekend. I am looking forward to getting my truck back next week.

Learning the rear wheel stand on a stack of wooden pallets.

Anyway, whenever I could ride, I have been focusing my training my balancing on the rear wheel stand in a confined and limited space; and on a stack of wooden pallet.

I rationalised that without a good balance control on the rear wheel stand, it would be very difficult for me to progress properly and consistently to the other related skills. And to make it more challenging, I must not only be able to rear wheel stand in a confined space but also a space that is elevated at least a foot or more off the ground (to let me get use to the height... LOL).

I had been training the rear wheel stand on the wooden pallets for 2 weeks now and I could see progress and improvement in the control of the bike.

And so today, on this perfect weather Christmas day, I got up at about 10:00am and started riding. I decided to try out the new pair of Reebok shoes I bought from Jakarta specifically for biketrial.

Bought this pair of Reebok from Jakarta for only RM95.

After my usual stretching, I warmed up with some hopping and pivoting. Then I started on the rear wheel stand and the first thing I noticed about the new shoes were that the soles were made of a harder compound and I could not get a good grip on the pedals.

The grips on my Echo's pedals were pretty sharp and had been on target to destroy all three pairs of my favourite riding shoes.

I did not know it at first but the Reebok's lack of grip on the pedal had affected my riding. I could not balance well on the rear wheel stand as I could not grip the pedals properly to hop to adjust my balance.

My many attempts at balancing on the rear wheel stand with the new pair of Reebok. (The background Power Puff theme song was hummed by my daughter... adding to the tension... LOL.)

After numerous attempts of struggling with the bike and getting really frustrated, I decided to switch back to my old Bata Power runners... LOL.

The old reliable Bata Power runners.

The sole of the Reebok and the Bata Power shoes compared.

With the old Bata shoe, the difference is obvious... LOL.

After switching to the old Bata shoe, I could immediately rear wheel stand properly. Maybe the Reebok needed to be seasoned. I hope I can worked it into a nice pair of riding shoes. And...

My pair 661 gloves.

... I need to get a new pair of gloves that reinforced the padding around the index finger. I guess biketrials is more demanding on the braking and thus more wear and tear around the index finger. This pair of 661 did not even last a year!

All in all, riding biketrial is an excellent way to spend Christmas day! Here is wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!