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How to crash

Old 05-28-07, 11:20 AM
  #1  
San Rensho 
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How to crash

http://youtube.com/watch?v=dumlhwjVtCs

Crashing is one of those inevitable hazards that that you have to live with if you race. The old saying goes "its not if you are going to crash, but when."

But there are ways to crash that lessen the chance of getting seriously hurt. I was watching the Giro recap yesterday and they showed this crash, which shows a very good technique for crashing. Most of the riders didn't put their arms out, they seemed quite relaxed and they just leaned back when they saw they were going down, hit the pavement on their sides and then rolled onto their backs/butts and rode out the slide.

Its hard to do in a panic situation, but relaxing, leaning back and not putting your arms out avoids bellyflopping, hitting your head, straight arming the road and possibly breaking your wrist/arm/collarbone.
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Old 05-28-07, 02:24 PM
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Yeah, leaning back puts the less-vulnerable parts of your body into the crash first; namely your legs. Your head is kept out of it.
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Old 05-28-07, 02:28 PM
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while that is a good technique, unfortunately, i think most crashes happen so fast you dont have time to even react let alone think about how to go down.
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Old 05-28-07, 03:09 PM
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Some crashes happen too fast, but most crashes give anywhere from .25-2 seconds of notice before the rider goes down. This is plenty of time for a person that knows how to crash to relax and position to roll and reduce the impact.

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Old 05-28-07, 03:41 PM
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People who don't practice the skills involved in crashing or avoiding crashing are going into a race less than fully prepared.
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Old 05-28-07, 03:43 PM
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ive always felt that all my years of skateboarding have helped me prepare for crashing. i honestly think it did help me when I got hit by that car last week.
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Old 05-28-07, 03:49 PM
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Man the cyclorazzi crowding in around one of the crashers really tick me off.

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Old 05-28-07, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by EventServices
People who don't practice the skills involved in crashing or avoiding crashing are going into a race less than fully prepared.
Definitely good advice. When I got into motorcycle road racing a few years ago, I read the bible on racing, Keith Code's A Twist of the Wrist. He dedicates a whole chapter to crashing. What I took away from it was don't be afraid of crashing, because you will hesitate and go slow at best, and possibly crash from hesitating, but be prepared for a crash and try to lessen the effects.
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Old 05-28-07, 04:02 PM
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as slowly as possible
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Old 05-28-07, 05:51 PM
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I generally just fall down and get scraped up.
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Old 05-28-07, 06:09 PM
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How do you practice the skills involved in crashing?

Seems like it might involve some unpleasantness. Practicing bumping and whatnot, sure, but crashing?
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Old 05-28-07, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Voodoo76
I generally just fall down and get scraped up.
+1

Don't forget to curse as you go down.
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Old 05-28-07, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by grebletie
How do you practice the skills involved in crashing?

Seems like it might involve some unpleasantness. Practicing bumping and whatnot, sure, but crashing?
You take a beater bike to a park and practice falling in the grass. Give people padded things to knock you off with if possible.
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Old 05-28-07, 06:45 PM
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I avoid getting hurt by using my head to absorb the impact.
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Old 05-28-07, 08:22 PM
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I picked up good crash technique from motocross and mountain biking. I find in the event of a crash I simply tuck in and roll through it to the best of my ability. I've also done mid-air bails so that helps with the nerves
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Old 05-28-07, 08:35 PM
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I like the grab my brakes really hard and hold my handle bars tight method, this is typically my technique when I see a rider on the ground in front of me(the most likely way your going to be involved in a crash in a bike race).

Its just a good idea not to put your arms out.
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Old 05-28-07, 08:55 PM
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Or what I did today on the last lap of the quad cities criterium. See two guys in front of you go down and grab brakes hard. Luckily for the guy in front of me, I was able to avoid his head, and not go down. Unluckily for me, I was out of the race.

From 27 mph to 12 mph in a couple seconds. Fun stuff.
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Old 05-29-07, 12:54 AM
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Originally Posted by riskus
while that is a good technique, unfortunately, i think most crashes happen so fast you dont have time to even react let alone think about how to go down.
If you practice it (or related things) then they don't happen too fast for you to react. My GF has more than once done an endo and landed on her feet-- she used to be a competitive gymnast, and when she starts to tumble the reactions kick in. She also still practices tumbling (mats instead of furniture in the living room...). She made me go to tumbling classes and open tumbling time for a while and it definitely changed how I react when I start to go down/over (on skis as well as bike).
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Old 05-29-07, 05:13 AM
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I've learned the 'how to fall' thing, but generally I usually have time to say 'Shi' before I'm down. Sometimes I manage to get the 't' out, too.

Fortunately my crashes to date have been fairly minor affairs, with the exception of one collarbone many moons ago.
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Old 05-29-07, 06:13 AM
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I almost got t-boned by a car the other day; there was 1 lane open up ahead, and traffic in both directions was stopped due to construction. I was going up the side at a fairly slowish clip....around 15-17 mph or so, and someone decided they didn't want to wait anymore and started to bang it to the right to take a side street. I was right around their rear bumper when they did this....I hammered on the brakes, and locked up the rear and sorta twisted the bike a bit to follow the path of the car (the back of the bike went to my left). I guess the driver heard the skid and stopped, and I was around 20 degrees or so angled to the right while still moving forward....horizontal to the car, released the brakes, and went around 'em.

Happened so fast, I just reacted...didn't think. Guess all those years of riding my BMX bike around the neighborhood and stuff helped .
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Old 05-29-07, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by lecterman
Man the cyclorazzi crowding in around one of the crashers really tick me off.

"Get the blood shot, get the blood shot!!"

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Old 05-29-07, 07:22 AM
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Originally Posted by grebletie
How do you practice the skills involved in crashing?

Seems like it might involve some unpleasantness. Practicing bumping and whatnot, sure, but crashing?
Practice tumbling skills on a mat.
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Old 05-29-07, 10:00 AM
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http://youtube.com/watch?v=_rUD7T4g9Q0

http://youtube.com/watch?v=frxfRdcPj...elated&search=

just do what keirin racers do, hold on to your handlebars.
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Old 05-29-07, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by merlinextraligh
Practice tumbling skills on a mat.
Jump off second floor balconies covered in bubble wrap.

You can't predict how a crash will happen, or when, if you could, you wouldn't crash.

That giro Stage was unusual in that the road was slippy due to water on all the painted surfaces, but in the usual sprint crashes, even the seasoned pros get hurt.
 
Old 05-29-07, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by DocRay

You can't predict how a crash will happen, or when, if you could, you wouldn't crash.

That giro Stage was unusual in that the road was slippy due to water on all the painted surfaces, but in the usual sprint crashes, even the seasoned pros get hurt.
That's all true. But developing an instinct, and ability to tuck and roll, rather than extending your hand helps the chance of reducing injury.

A guy named Eddie Borysewicz had his racers do tumbling exercises for this reason, and he knew a few thing about racing a bike.
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