BMX biking, a growing craze among youth, offers more than just a thrill; it's a skillful blend of speed and acrobatics. The ability to pedal backwards, a common query for enthusiasts, isn't just possible, but crucial for mastering tricks.
This backward pedaling is enabled by a freewheel mechanism on some hubs; and manual movement on others. However, it's vital to recognize that BMX models vary.
This article delves into how different freewheel mechanisms influence backpedaling capabilities, the expertise needed for safely executing stunts, and why this feature is pivotal in distinguishing BMX bikes from ordinary bicycles.
Can BMX Bikes Pedal Backwards?
BMX bikes are popular for their versatility and the ability to perform tricks. One of the questions that frequently arises is whether BMX bikes can pedal backward. The answer is yes, but the type of hub you have dictates how it’s possible.
Backward Pedaling with a Cassette Hub
A cassette hub is a type of bike hub that features a freewheel mechanism. This means the hub allows the rider to coast without pedaling while moving forward. When the rider pedals forward, the hub engages and rotates the wheel. However, when the rider pedals backward, the hub disengages and the wheel does not rotate.
Therefore, if a BMX bike has a cassette hub, it cannot pedal backward. The rider must turn the bike around and pedal forward to move in the opposite direction.
Crucially, since the hub disengages when pedaling backwards you will also have to pedal backwards when the bike moves backwards.
Pedaling Backwards with a Freecoaster
A freecoaster is a type of bike hub that allows the rider to travel backward without the need to turn the pedals backward. This hub has a clutch mechanism that disengages when the bike moves backward.
BMX riders who perform tricks and stunts often prefer freecoaster hubs, allowing for more fluid and creative movements. However, freecoaster hubs are generally more expensive than cassette hubs and require more maintenance.
Whether a BMX bike can pedal backward depends on its hub type. A cassette hub does not allow for backward pedaling, while a freecoaster hub does. Riders should consider their riding style and preferences when choosing a hub for their BMX bike.
BMX Tricks Involved in Pedaling Backwards
Pedaling backward on a BMX bike is not just a simple movement, but it involves a set of tricks that require skill and practice. Here are some of the BMX tricks involved in pedaling backward:
Fakie is a BMX trick where the rider pedals backward while rolling forward. This trick involves shifting the rider's weight to the back wheel and pedaling backward to maintain momentum. Fakie is a fundamental trick that every BMX rider needs to master before moving on to other tricks.
Switch footed is a trick where the rider pedals backward with the opposite foot than the one used for forward pedaling. This trick requires the rider to switch their feet while maintaining balance and momentum. Switch-footed is a challenging trick that requires a lot of practice to master.
Rolling backward is a trick where the rider pedals backward while rolling backward. This trick involves shifting the rider's weight to the front wheel and pedaling backward to maintain momentum. Rolling backward is a difficult trick that requires a lot of balance and control.
180 Fakie is a trick where the rider performs a 180-degree turn while rolling backward. This trick involves shifting the rider's weight to the back wheel, performing a 180-degree turn, and pedaling backward to maintain momentum. 180 Fakie is a challenging trick that requires a lot of skill and practice.
Best MTB Hubs
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn commissions by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.