Hello, my name is Jordana and I have Bike-xiety.
Hello. My name is Jordana, I’m 34 and I love to ride bikes. You probably think that because I run an organisation committed to women’s cycling that I’m really good. Elite level probably. Basically a professional.
You would be wrong.
The thing is… I’m not naturally sporty.
In fact, I think I’m a big scaredy-cat.
My first road ride I was scared of everything. Cars, dogs, other riders, the wind… On the mountain bike it was single track, trees, roots, rocks, mud, sand… I’m not one of those people who just took naturally to biking. At all. See below.
Learning to ride as an adult meant that every ride I went on, I felt I had lots of nerves and anxiety to overcome, so I wanted to share some tips with others in case they resonate!
I think the best way to overcome anything is to obey the 80/20 rule, meaning I like to be 80% in my comfort zone, 20% outside it.
When you think about doing things outside your comfort zone, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to do anything super-radical. You don’t all of a sudden need to start trying gap jumps and massive drops if you’re not there yet.
For me it might be doing things like focusing on the skills required to do that rock you always stop at. What does it require? Lifting the front wheel. ok, let’s try a few trails that require me to lift the front wheel.
Or let’s say if you’re doing 5 trails, try braking 1 less time on 1 trail the next time you do it!
Be deliberate – but go easy on yourself
Making deliberate attempts to be brave is what helps you get past the fear humps.
I’m really happy when I’m riding in my comfort zone… but the brilliant thing about spending a little bit of time pushing yourself is that eventuallym when you ride, the trails and obstacles falling in that comfort zone gradually shift to more complex things without me putting too much pressure on myself.
How do you overcome your bike-xiety?