You’ve likely already seen some professional BMX riders on television or online do some tricks that seem inhuman. Naturally, no one starts that way, and there’s a significant learning curve in getting that good. Often people start with easy tricks that they can learn at home before graduating to more complex maneuvers. However, it can be hard to track your progress if you don’t have a BMX trick list on hand that you check off whenever you learn a new trick. Fortunately, we’ve provided you with a list below and descriptions of each trick. We’ve also distinguished some of the harder BMX freestyle tricks so you can pace yourself accordingly.
As mentioned above, there are some BMW tricks that you can learn from watching a small video or even from seeing a friend perform. A wheelie is a great example and usually works with just about any bike type, including mountain bikes.
For a wheelie, all you have to do is pedal hard, and as you do that, you pull up on the handlebars to lift the front wheel off the ground. This basic trick motion might also come in handy while you’re trying other tricks.
Keep your body weight balanced on the back wheel, so you don’t fall backward and ride this way for a few meters.
Also, something you’ll learn pretty quickly the more you try these things is that practice makes you better, so keep doing the wheelie until you feel good enough and can maintain your balance for longer.
After the wheelie, most people progress to the bunny hop. It can be done on a flat surface or with a ramp. Start by riding your BMX at a comfortable pace with your legs and pedals almost parallel to the ground. After that, lean over and compress your body weight on the bike with some bend in your knees.
Follow up by leaning back your body and jumping as you pull back the bike handles. If done correctly, the front wheel should come off the ground first. Once the back wheel is off the ground, push your arms and bike handlebar forward and tuck your legs. This will give you the most height on your hop. However, it may take a few tries to get the timing right.
Both wheels should land back on the ground at about the same time. If one is preceding the other, it’s probably because you messed up the timing on one of the abovementioned steps. Keep practicing, and eventually, you should be able to do it. Also, once you’re good enough, you can add more style to the trick, such as bending your BMX to one side in midair. You can even explore using a ramp to get more height on your bunny hop.
Others like the track stand, fakie, and 180 hop also belong on the BMX trick list for beginners.
While the hardest BMX freestyle tricks may differ depending on who you ask, there are certainly a few common options. Examples include the Euro table, moto whip, superman, Indian air, tail whip, etc. Pro bikers can have also described the Can-can and no-foot as some of the hardest to pull off.
With the Can-can, you bunny hop; if you do it on a ramp, you should have more hang time in the air. Once you’re airborne, take one foot and lift it over the bike top tube before extending it on the other side. You must be quick and efficient since this foot should return to the pedal before you land.
While it’s tempting to try a few of these after seeing them a few times on YouTube, they can be risky. According to research Trusted Source BMX bicycles: accident comparison with other models A comparison has been made between BMX bicycle accidents and those occurring when children ride other types of bicycle. pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov , such stunts are also responsible for many of the injuries you see in hospital emergency rooms for BMX bikers. However, poor cycling technique and minimal protective headgear are also responsible for some injuries.
Olympic athlete Connor Field's Trusted Source He Suffered ‘the Worst Injury of the Tokyo Games.’ Can He Recover? Connor Fields’s gruesome crash on the Olympic BMX track left him with serious brain trauma, a fractured memory and a lot of questions about the future. www.nytimes.com injury also proves that you should take the risk of BMX bike injuries seriously. Fortunately, BMX riders typically don’t make up a huge part of the 130,000 Trusted Source Bicycle Safety | Transportation Safety | Injury Center | CDC Bicycle trips make up only 1% of all trips in the United States.1 However, bicyclists account for over 2% of people who die in a crash involving a motor vehicle on our nation’s roads. www.cdc.gov injured in bike crashes on roads in the U.S. annually.
It’s best to build up your skills as you slowly progress through trick difficulty. Also, while you likely won’t see most BMX riders wearing protective gear, incorporating them into your learning sessions might be a good idea.
When building a BMX foundation, tricks like the bunny hop, wheelie, and fakie are among the first that newbies need to learn. Once they’ve perfected them, moving on slowly to more complex tricks should be doable.
As for the best way to start learning these tricks, joining a local BMX club would be ideal. That way, you have a community of like-minded individuals with the experience and skills to teach you.
Alternatively, you can use YouTube and social media as a resource while using the local BMX track for experimentation. Even if there’s no formal club, chances are you can get someone more knowledgeable than you to observe and help you correct your mistakes.
Here are the best overall BMX tricks you should have at your fingertips.
The X-up is an improvement on the bunny hop, where once you’re launched in the air, you turn the handlebars 180 degrees and then back straight. While in the air, your hands should be crossed into an X shape hence the name.
The barspin is the next step once you learn the X-up, where instead of keeping hold of your handlebar, you release it and let it spin before catching it again before you land.
With the one-handed X-up, you let go of the handlebar with either the right or left hand and use the other to turn it 180 degrees. Remember to straighten it back out and catch it with your other hand before you land.
The no-foot can takes the Can can to the next level since you’ll need to take both feet off the pedals for a few micro-seconds and let them hang on one side. You’ll, of course, need to reposition them on the pedals before you land.
With the footplant, you start with a bunny hop motion, and once the bike is in the air, you take one foot off the pedal and plant it on the ground. You follow up by jumping back up with the planted foot and resuming the rest of the bunny hop motion.
The superman seat grab requires a high ramp to launch you into the air, and with that, you can take your feet off the pedals while pushing the bike in front of you. In essence, it should look like you’re superman flying through the air with one hand on the handlebar and the other on the bike seat.
The tailwhip is a lot like the barspin. However, instead of the handlebars spinning, you’ll use your feet to kick the rest of the bike around the handlebars and front wheels.
With the turndown, you start with a bunny, hop off a ramp, pull up the bike midair, push your body to one side of the bike, and turn down the handlebar towards your back foot. You’ll also need to kick your legs out straight.
With the tabletop, you’ll turn the bike’s wheels to one side while you try to drop the handlebar on the opposite side while you’re in midair. This can also be done on dirt jumps. Speaking of dirt jumps, if you’re in the market for the best dirt jump bikes, we’ve listed different options at various price points.
With the nose pick, you come off a bunny hop, but instead of landing on both tires, you only land on the front wheel and balance for a few seconds before transitioning out of it.
The icepick is fairly similar to the nose pick since you have to balance on a small point for a few seconds. However, in this case, your balancing point will be the rear peg of your BMX on the edge of the ramp.
The peg grind is the most basic of grinds, and people do them on rails or a ledge. To pull it off, bunny hop and land with the pegs on one side of your bike over the rail while the wheels are flush to the side of the rail. You can then slide to the bottom with your bike before landing on the ground.
This builds on the foundation of a peg grind where your wheels end up on different sides of the rail. However, they still need to be flush to the sides of the rail, with the pegs helping to hold them in place.
The toothpick grind on a ledge or rail is where you balance using your front wheel peg while your back wheel is up in the air.
The 50-50 grind is just a different name for the abovementioned peg grind.
You can only do the Smith grind with a ledge rather than a rail. Here, your front wheel peg should be helping balance on the edge of the ledge while the rear wheel is on top of the ledge. What differentiates this from the toothpick grind is that your back wheel won’t be in the air.
The feeble grind is the opposite of the Smith grind, where the rear wheel peg is grinding on the edge of the ledge while the front wheel rolls on top of the ledge.
With the blunt grind, you grind on the cranks of the BMX rather than the pegs.
To do the disaster, you ride up a quarterpipe, do a bunny hop into a 180-degree turn with your bike. You should land with your bike split on the coping where the front wheel is just under the edge.
With a nose-bonk, you bunny hop and land with your front wheel on the ground with your back wheel raised. You can ride like this for a yard or two before you drop the back wheel back to the ground.
With the X-up grind, you combine the peg grind and the X-up so your hands are crossed while on the ledge.
The Luc-e grind involves grinding on both the rear peg and front pedal. However, unlike the feeble grind where the front wheel would typically be on top of the ledge, this time, it’s tipped below the ledge.
The backside slide can be done on a flat surface, and the goal is to turn the handlebars and front wheel while the back wheel slides on the ground so that it ends up facing the same direction as the front wheel.
With the Luc-e stall, you do a normal Luc-e grind but pause somewhere on the ledge for a second or two before transitioning back to something else.
The feeble stall is a variation of the feeble grind where you stop somewhere on the ledge, then compress your body, lift the front wheel, and hop back in the opposite direction.
With the nose bonk stall, you do a normal nose bonk but pause and balance with your rear wheel in the air while the front wheel is on the ground before hopping into the motion.
The crooked stall involves a normal stall where you pause in the middle before hopping off the rail. Naturally, for this to work, you need a flat rail rather than one that goes down a flight of stairs.
The Smith stall starts as a Smith grind, but you pause somewhere in the middle of your grind with your bike before hopping off into a different motion.
The 50-50 stall involves a 50-50 grind that you pause, balance, and then transition off the rail.
The un-luc-e grind is basically the opposite of the luc-e grind, where you grind on the front peg while the rear peg hangs off the edge. On this BMX freestyle tricks list, this can be one of the hardest stunts to pull off, although it’s not as likely to cause injury as some of the others.
If you’re looking for a great starter bike for learning BMX bike stunts, our list of the best BMX bikes for kids could come in handy in helping you choose a suitable option.
BMX bike weights vary depending on several factors, including the size of the bike, frame, material, wheels, pedals, etc. For a clearer understanding of how these affect the bike’s weight, you can check out our in-depth writeup on BMX bike weight.
That said, the Mongoose Title BMX comes highly recommended by reviewers due to its lightweight aluminum frame and a choice of either 20 or 24-inch wheels to match your needs.
If BMX bikes were as big as road bikes, doing some of the BMX freestyle bike tricks would be impossible. As such, they’re so small, especially compared to other bike types, because they’re designed to be light and maneuverable.
As mentioned above, the weight of BMX bike weights varies depending on the components included. Carbon fiber frames, for instance, are typically quite light, but the overall weight of the bike can be higher depending on the type of wheels and tires you decide to go with.
Steel is a heavier material. That said, most reviewers seem to agree that the alloy steel Tony Hawk BMX bike is a great option for kids, thanks to its design and durability.
Compared to alternatives like road bikes and mountain bikes, BMX bikes are not particularly fast since they’re not as aerodynamically designed. The small wheels and overall size also affect how slow the bikes are.
If you want to learn and perform these bike tricks, you should be prepared for some falls and injuries along the way. However, it shouldn’t be too bad, especially if you take on this BMX trick list gradually. Start with the simplest stunts, like the bunny hop and wheelie, and then build on that. Before you know it, you’ll be stringing up three or four tricks in a row.