Commitment. Whoops can be scary. To be
able to get through a set of whoops fast takes
commitment. In most cases, the faster you go
through them, the easier it is. If you go slow,
you will most likely fall down into the trough, or at the
very least teeter-totter through the whoops.
Weight distribution. Your weight needs to
be spread evenly across the bike. Your body
should look as if you are doing a Romanian
dead-lift when going through a whoop section.
Your butt should be back, with your knees behind your
toes and your head over the handlebars. Too much weight
on either end could result in the front end skipping a
whoop or, worse yet, diving into the middle of a whoop.
Rocking. Not everyone can blitz the top of
whoops, but everyone can use the rocking
motion. The rocking motion starts with hitting
your front wheel on the face of each whoop
and your rear wheel on the backside of each one. Practice
the rocking motion by coming into the section slow. As
your back wheel hits the backside of each whoop, blip the
throttle. In time, you will develop a rocking rhythm that
will get you through the whoops. Rocking is not the
fastest way, but it is the safest way to guarantee that
you’ll get through a section of whoops without losing too
Relax. Learn to relax. As long as your
legs have gripped the bike securely, you
can let your arms and shoulders flow
with the bike. No need to fight it. As
long as you have the correct form, the bike will do most of
the work for you. ❏
Shift up. A
general rule of
thumb is to shift a
gear up before you
enter the whoops. When you
go through a whoop section,
the rear wheel only touches the
ground for a short period of
time. The rest of the time, the
wheel is in midair, having no
contact with the ground. This
makes the bike rev out quickly.
When the bike revs out, the
power flattens, which puts more
weight on the front of the bike,
causing you to lose traction.
Shifting to the next gear will
keep you in the meat of the
power, increase traction, help
keep you straight and keep the
rear end squatted.
Balls of the feet.
Before you enter the
whoops, be sure to
get the balls of your
feet on the footpegs. This will
help distribute your body weight
across the bike. If you are on
your arches, you lose the ability
to use your ankles for stability
and a few more inches of travel.
your lower body to the bike by squeezing
your legs against the bike. Doing this will
allow you to relax your grip and arms so you
can move fluidly with the bike. This will also reduce side-
to-side motion of the bike, keeping the bike stable and
consistent through the whoops.
Toes in. Try pointing your toes out and
doing a squat. Where do your knees go? Out!
If your toes are pointed out going through
the whoops, your knees will also point out,
which will create an opening between your legs and the
bike. This will make you feel disconnected from the bike.
If you have issues with not being able to keep the bike
straight in whoops, pay attention to your feet.
Entry speed. Entering the whoops at the
right speed is critical. A lot of people tend
to come in slow and pick up the pace once
they have a good rhythm going. This causes
issues, as they will lose traction when trying to speed
up. It takes commitment, but if you come in at the same
speed you plan on going through them, it will help you
stay on top of the whoops and keep straight.
Wheel placement. Getting a good rhythm
in the whoops starts with where you place
the front wheel in the first whoop. If your
front wheel is too high, you can skip a
whoop. If it is too low, your front wheel will be lost in the
trenches. Find the sweet spot. Depending on your speed,
the sweet spot will change, but if your weight is distrib-
uted evenly and your speed is consistent, the front wheel
will find the sweet spot without much work on your part.
ABOUT MASTERING WHOOPS