North American Division
|Skill Level 2|
|Year of Introduction: 1998|
Please note that the South Pacific Division version is a bit different in places, so those in New Zealand and Australia etc need to look up the requirements on the SPD website. There is also a handy work book there too.
1. Earn the Cycling Honor.Edit
2. Using a mountain bike and a road bike as examples, show and describe five differences between mountain and road bicycles.Edit
- Tires - Mountain bikes have knobbie tires for gripping the trail. Road bikes have slick tires to minimize rolling resistance, increasing speed and ease of riding.
- Handlebars - Mountain bikes have a wide, flat handlebar to allow better control and a more upright riding style to allow better vision of the trail. Road bikes have a narrower, dropped (downward curved) handlebar to allow more riding positions and more aerodynamics.
- Gearing - Most Mountain bikes have three chainrings (44/36/22) paired with a 7, 8, or 9 speed cassette. Most Road bikes have two chainrings (53/39), larger than a Mountain bike, paired with a smaller 9 or 10 speed cassette. The larger gear ratios on a Road bike allow greater speed on smooth surfaces.
- Shifters / Brake Levers - Mountain bikes have a horizontal brake lever paired with a trigger shifter (rapidfire) or a twist shifter (GripShift). Road bikes have either an integrated vertical lever, meaning that the brake lever is also used for shifting by pushing the lever to the side, or a vertical brake lever paired with downtube shifters, paddle levers on the sides of the downtube used for shifting.
- Wheels - Mountain bike wheels are typically 26 inch wheels, although 29 inch wheels are becoming popular among experienced riders. The rims are sturdy, made to stand up to the abuse of a rough trail. There are many spokes, to support the rim and the hub is beefy to provide a strong foundation. Road bike wheels are typically 700c though 650c wheels are occasionally used by smaller riders. The rims are light, but strong, and are shaped to provide little wind resistance. There are normally fewer spokes that are occasionally bladed (flattened) to cut through the wind. The hub is smaller to provide less of an obstacle for the wind, but is still very strong. Road wheels, however, could not likely stand up to the constant pounding that Mountain bike wheels can.
3. Demonstrate the function and advantages of cleats, bar ends and a front shock on a mountain bike.Edit
4. List at least three materials that mountain bike frames are made from and explain why new materials are always being tested for mountain bike frames.Edit
- Aluminum or Aluminum Alloy
- Carbon Fiber
New materials are being researched to find stiffer, lighter, and more durable frame options.
5. Explain differences between single track, double track, and fire roads.Edit
The essential feature of single track is that it is narrow. In addition it is frequently smooth and flowing, but it may also exhibit technical rocky sections and may be criss-crossed with tree roots. Single track contrasts with double track or fire road which is wide enough for four-wheeled off-road vehicles.
6. Give the definition for the terms “hard tail” and “full suspension” and explain the advantages and disadvantages of a full-suspension bike compared to a hard tail.Edit
A "hard tail" mountain bike only has suspension on the fork, whereas a "full suspension" mountain bike has two suspension devices (one on the fork and one supporting the rear tire from the frame).
A few advantages of having a "hard tail" are that it costs less, has fewer components that can break, and is much easier to operate when climbing up hills.
On the other hand, some of the advantages of a "full suspension" mountain bike are that they are more comfortable (even on rough terrain), can handle greater abuse when riding tough trails, and can be adjusted to fit a number of different types of terrain.
7. Describe the basic rules of courtesy that should be followed when doing off road riding.Edit
8. List 3 basic pieces of safety equipment that should be worn when mountain biking.Edit
- Closed Toe Shoes
- Protective Eyewear
9. Know the 3 most commonly broken bones in mountain biking accidents and how to prevent these injuries from occurring.Edit
Commonly Broken BonesEdit
To prevent injuries from occurring be sure to make choices that decrease the risk of injury-(all injury).
- Wear protective gear.
- Choose trails appropriate to your riding ability and riding experience.
- Be physically fit enough for the trail you choose to ride. Do not ride when fatigued!
- Keep bike in top mechanical shape. When mountain biking, bikes should be checked and properly maintained before every ride.
10. Demonstrate how to properly clean, polish and lube your bike after you ride it.Edit
11. Complete the following riding requirements: All rides must be done on some sort of off-road trail like single track and a given trail may be used for more than one ride or repeated to make a ride long enough to meet the requirements (if needed).Edit
- a. Three 5 mile rides.
- b. Two 10 mile rides.
- c. One 20 mile ride.