… like riding a bike

It’s common knowledge that there are some things that you cannot unlearn once you’ve learnt them, like riding a bike. Right?

Destin Sandlin, creator of the educational video series Smarter Every Day, learnt how to ride a bike that goes left when steered right and vice versa. It took him eight months until it “clicked” – but then he found that he couldn’t ride normal bikes any more!

I’d love to try riding his Backwards Brain Bicycle. When I first tried to ride a recumbent bike I had a similar experience because on a normal bike, you steer mostly by shifting your body weight and only turn the handlebars a little bit to help. On a recumbent, you can’t really shift your weight much, so you have to steer by making lots of tiny movements with the handlebars. (This is especially hard if your recumbent has under-seat steering, though I’ve heard that pivot steering is even harder). It took me a few tries until I managed stopped my brain from trying to shift my weight, but once it clicked, riding the recumbent was not too difficult. Since the directions are not reversed, I can still ride an upright bike like before.

2 Responses to “… like riding a bike”

  1. garret Says:

    I never thought about the fact you cannot shift weight on a recumbent. Interesting!

  2. Andrea Says:

    Garret, if you ever get the chance to go for a test ride on a recumbent, try it – it’s fun! And fortunately, you sit lower and don’t fall very far if your first try doesn’t work out and you fall. 😉