Is it your first time riding an electric dirt bike? Then, this guide is exactly what you need.
Riding an electric dirt bike may seem hard at first. But if you develop good habits right from the start, you’re on your way to enjoying a smooth ride.
What makes an electric dirt bike different?
On the outside, electric dirt bikes look similar to gas-powered bikes. However, it uses an electric motor and a battery for power generation.
If you’re looking for the best electric dirt bikes for teenagers, they come in different configurations and sizes. The best way to know if it’s electric or gas-powered is to look carefully to see the following telltale characteristics:
- absence of an exhaust system, which is the most obvious sign that it’s battery-powered
- no fuel required
- The gas tank is replaced with carefully designed faring
The Correct Rider Position
You can’t just hop on the dirt bike, sit, then off you go. Sitting comfortably is fine if you’re just going for a short ride on a flat road. But if you’re planning to go off-road, you need to know the correct rider position.
The most crucial part of the proper riding position is to stand up on footpegs. Here’s what you need to do.
- Lift your but off the seat for a few inches. This lets your body and legs brace for impact as you bounce along the trail. Not standing up when you go over serious bumps can easily hurt your back or spine.
- Straighten your back when you stand up slightly on the pegs. You should be in a “defensive” mode like a football player getting ready for play.
- Stick out your elbows to make them parallel to the handlebars. This will give you greater power and reaction time when you turn.
- Place the ball of your foot on the footpegs (not the heel). Otherwise, you may carelessly ride the brake lightly with your right foot.
- Lastly, make sure to push your head forward so that your chin is over the handlebars.
This position won’t be comfortable, but if you see big bumps coming up, make sure you always do the proper rider position. It may look like a small thing, but you’ll soon realize that this position will make it feel impossible to crash.
Expect that it’ll be tiring to maintain this position for long aggressive rides, so feel free to sit down and relax on manageable sections. But remember, be ready to spring up anytime you’ll need extra power and shock absorbance.
How To Start the Bike
Simply turn the key to the “on” position or press the “on” button. Then, you need to:
Decide if you need to use the choke
If it’s warm outside or your bike has been running that day, then you may no longer need to use the choke. But if you’re starting in cold conditions, you’ll have to pull out the choke. The choke is often a switch you flip under the battery, like the one you see on the Yamaha TTR-50E. It’s mostly found as a pull-out on the left side of the bike near to where your leg would be when sitting.
Get into neutral
To get into neutral for an electric dirt bike, sit and reach your left foot forward to the gear shifter. Step on the lever in front of the footbeg repeatedly (6 times) to ensure you’re in neutral.
Now, you can start the engine. On new dirt bikes with an electric start, simply press the button. If you used the choke, make sure to push it back in. It’s nice to leave the bike idle for at least 2 minutes before your ride to warm it up a bit.
Control, Shift, and Brake
For dirt bikes with no clutch, commonly, there are only 3 gears. Repeatedly stepping on the shifter puts you in neutral, then one click up means 1st gear, then 2nd, and 3rd. A good reason why most electric dirt bikes are ideal for beginners is that you don’t have gears and clutch to worry about.
There are two brakes on a dirt bike, and most beginners gravitate toward the right-hand brake. If you still aren’t used to the feel of a hand brake, you’re most likely to pull it like you would on a bicycle. This is dangerous as it may send you flying over the handlebars even at a low speed.
Practice squeezing front brakes gently part way. Don’t press it like you would on a bicycle. Squeezing it fast will press down the front of your bike, which isn’t great if you’re going downhill. On the other hand, using a foot brake controls the back tire, which gives the smoothest stop.
Since the foot brake isn’t as “grabby” as the front brakes, if you’re to stop at full speed, you’d come to a smooth stop. It’s easier to use for beginners as you won’t have to worry about having the electric bike seize up and send you flying off.
Crashing is not as simple as it sounds. Most dirt biking injuries are situated below the waste. So if you don’t want to make the same mistake, don’t stick out your foot when you feel that you will crash.
It’s okay to use your foot for stability, but, keep that foot turned horizontal to your bike. Keep it far away from the footpeg, and if you’re crashing, pull that foot in and set it on the footpeg. It’s not a big deal for the bike to lay onto its side on your leg as long as your foot is in a normal rider position.
Always wear protective gears when riding. This includes a helmet, goggles, gloves, a chest protector, good quality dirt bike boots, elbow and knee guards.
For your first rides, everything may still feel a bit awkward. That’s natural since you’re still developing muscle memory. Since it’s your first time riding, don’t take any shortcuts and develop good habits from the beginning and you’ll be a pro in no time.