How to Shift Gears: The Basics - 1/2

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Get to know the basics of bike gears in this handy video

Knowing how to use your gears properly is better for you and for your bike...don't forget this video is split into two parts!

MELLOWER "Searching My Name" Published by Alter K

In this video you will learn how to change gears efficiently.

Gears allow you to ride smart: minimizing the effort while maximizing the fun.

Most bikes have two sets of gear cogs.

The chainrings in the front can be controlled with the left shifter.

There are generally a maximum of three chainrings and they are arranged from the smallest to the biggest chainrings.

The left shifter is used for making big changes.

When you rotate the shifter you move to a lower number gear.

The lower the number the easier it is to ride.

The sprockets at the back are controlled by the right shifter.

You can have 3 to 11 sprockets and they are arranged from the biggest to the smallest sprocket.

The right shifter is used for small changes or fine tuning.

Rotating the shifter will change the gear.

There are a few types of mechanisms to shift gears, namely grip shifters and small levers.

In this case we have a grip shifter that you can rotate to change gears.

Always shift the gear while you are pedalling forward.

Make sure to take the load of the pedals as you shift.

Be careful not to force the pedals too hard when changing gears, as, for example, when climbing a steep hill as the gears will have difficulty switching.

If you gears aren't properly indexed, or if your gear cables are slightly frayed, you might need to shift between two gears -slightly beyond the gear you are seeking in order to get the chain to switch sprockets.

Once you've gotten the chain onto the desired gear you can let the gear shifter drop back down to the gear in question Shifting to a higher or outer gear makes it harder to pedal.

Shfting to a lower or inner gear makes it easier to pedal.

Shift gradually, making sure the chain has engaged with each new gear before moving onto the next one.

Avoid cross-chaining.

This is when you use the combination of the smallest chainrings, or the two biggest chainrings, on the front and back gears simultaneously.

Cross-chaining wears out the chain and components of the gear mechanism quickly.

If you hear a grinding metallic noise, it will probably be a sprocket that hasn't caught the chain properly.

Gently try switching gears back and forth.

If it doesn't work you might have to lubricate the chain and the gears or maybe get them adjusted.

Check out our following video on how to shift gears efficiently.

Enjoy your ride.

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