Baseline Balance Skills for Mountain Bikers

An online course designed to boost your confidence & maneuverability on technical trails


Introduction to Baseline Balance Skills

42 progressive video lessons designed to quickly boost your confidence & maneuverability on technical trails. You’ll gain the ability to creatively and enjoyably solve these common trail riding traps:

  • Clean tight switchbacks
  • Navigate tight trees
  • Roll fast over rough terrain
  • Re-position your bike for the optimal line, every time
  • Remain balanced while a rider dabs or walks in front of you
  • Roll slowly while in control down technical trails
  • Stop without dabbing to quickly scope your line
  • Recover after a mistake and regain composure
  • Adjust tire position on skinnies with ease
  • Confidently hop sideways off logs or ledges
  • Waiting on your bike for a traffic light to change
  • Pause to re-focus and breathe
  • Ride slowly with stability up or down steep technical trails

Learning these balance skills will transform your riding style

  • Track stands
  • Hopping
  • Rocking
  • Trail Integration

Curriculum Based Learning

Progressive video lessons to ensure mastery

Track Stands

1. Theory
2. Ratcheting
3 Corner Ratcheting
4. Dizzy Drill
5. A Momentary Pause
6. Precision
7. Gift of Gravity
8. Technical Trail Ratchets

9. Going Nowhere
10. Big & Small Movements
11. Breathe for Flow
12. Brakethrough
13. Edge Support
14. Sit Down!
15. Four Positions
16. High Pressure Front
17. Variations
18. Bonus! – Riding Fakie


1. Theory
2. Phase 1 – Compression
3. Phase 2 – Launch
4. Bowl Concept
5. Phase 3 – Lift
6. Rhythm Hops to a Stop
7. Brake Hop
8. Proprioception Challenge
9. Precision
10. Curbs
11. Slope Practice


1. Rocking Theory
2. Rolling Rear Rock Motion
3. Rolling Front Rock Motion
4. Rear Rock
5. Full Rock
6. Rocking Rhythm
7. Crank Levelling
8. Big & Small Rocks
9. Sideways Precision
10. Curbs Rock
11. Nudges & Creative Combos
12. Graduate Lesson: Ratchet Hop
13. Trail Integration Examples & Completion!

Baseline Balance Appreciation

Rob Selina

I’ve really benefited from Ryan’s structured lessons and practice. My riding had plateaued for a number of years, but Ryan’s c...

Jess Iburg

Taking the Baseline Balance Skills course has expanded the foundation of my slow speed bike handling skills, and has set me up for improved trai...

Tim Johnson

You have no idea how much I have anticipated this course. I am very nearly obsessing about the things I have learned from your teaching in the s...

Baseline Balance Skills


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Baseline Balance Skills Course

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Critiques: Unlimited video review - film your practice and share for powerful feedback!

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Track stands, hopping and rocking are secret skills that have the biggest impact for the least amount of practice time.

Practice is safe, and will make you a  more confident rider - I can guarantee this based on the results of thousands of riders who have graduated from this course. 

No matter your skill level, learning to track stand, hop and rock will provide the biggest appreciation in abilities.

Each skill is broken down into clear, gradual, and attainable progressions. For a relatively small amount of dedicated practice time you’ll experience incredible on-trail results!

Baseline Balance Skills Progression #7 – the Track Stand
An example lesson


Use your favorite practice hill, although if it’s grass, try to pick an area that is as smooth as possible (not too soft and bumpy), because this will delay you from experiencing the all-important roll back – aka the track stand gift of gravity!

The theory is that as you start ratcheting up hill, gravity wants you to roll backwards down the slope and it’s your pedal pressure forward that prevents that from happening. For this drill, we will actually indulge and use gravity’s force for our track standing advantage!

Roll across the slope and ratchet up the hill in your favorite turning direction before slowing to stop with your feet close to horizontal, just as you have been practicing.

But this time after you come to a momentary stop I want you to ease off the forward pedal pressure even more and just enough so you feel gravity pushing your foot back up which at the same time will mean you will roll backwards ever so slightly.

And it’s not just your feet that ratchet back, but your bike and your whole body will move just slightly back too. At first this may feel strange, but it’s the basis for maintaining a balanced track stand.

You may need to experiment with hill steepness, the steeper the slope the more pronounced and immediate the roll back feedback will be, but the more power and pressure you’ll need to hold you in place, and then start up again with your forward foot pressure.

Practice until this feels normal and natural!

Frequently Asked Mountain Bike Balance Questions

What pre-requisite skill level do I need for this course?

Beginner through Advanced! For beginners who dedicate time for practice these skills are very attainable and safe to learn. They are also building block skills enabling a faster learning progression in many riding situations. Advanced riders often develop ‘hacked’ versions of these skills, so I recommend this course so they can experience the true power of these skills, especially when combined together.

What exactly are the Baseline Balance Skills that you teach?

Balance requires movement, and their are three fundamental balance movement patterns that make up these baseline balance skills.

Trackstands: require rolling back and forth with the front wheel turned – for example this is key for negotiating tight switchbacks.

Hopping: requires both tires to lift off the ground simultaneously – for example this is key for getting out of ruts or to prevent tires from getting jammed on trail obstacles.

Rocking: requires movement and placement of your tires individually – for example to adjust the direction of your bike for the best line possible.

What if I have questions for you as I’m learning?

I’m here for you! Consider me your on-demand coach – simply jot your questions in the comment section below each lesson and I’ll send you a reply.

Can I view these courses on my cell phone?

This course is fully mobile responsive, so it will automatically format to any phone or tablet. Smooth video streaming requires a good cell or wifi connection. Please be mindful of your data-plan limits.

If I take a video of myself learning, would you be willing to review and provide feedback?

You bet! This is a powerful learning strategy and something I encourage. Simply upload the video link to a service like youtube and place the link in the comment field. Then await my reply!

More Baseline Balance Results

David Gorman

I was tired of lacking the skills I needed to ride technical trails, and balance was one of those things that was always elusive.  Ryan&rsq...

Slim Lundeen

The Baseline Balance course, in my opinion, is a must for everyone. That course has helped me to clean obstacles that have plagued me since I st...

Randy Spotts

When I saw the trials riding sequence in The Collective’s 2006 MTB video release entitled “Roam,” I was compelled to find out ...

Graham Gedge

The real benefit for me was breaking the skills down into simple to follow steps with clear written and video explanations of each step. Not onl...

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