24Mountain Bike Terms for Dummies
Ramped: This term is used when talking
about suspension feel. Essentially, it refers
to how consistent the suspension feels as it
goes through its travel. If a fork feels firmer
as it goes through the travel, it is ramping
up. Air-sprung forks and shocks typically
“ramp up” as they go through their travel,
while coil springs do not. Coil springs feel
Roost: Excess dirt that is pushed out
from your rear wheel into the air, usually
hitting your riding buddy in the face.
Scrub: The scrub is a technique that
was invented by motocross star James
“Bubba” Stewart. It requires laying the bike
over before the lip of the jump to clear it as
low as possible and maintain speed.
Sled: This is a general term for a mountain bike, either hardtail or full-suspension,
although it’s typically reserved for longer-travel full-suspension bikes.
Slack: Enduro and downhill riders love
this word almost more than “goggle.”
Slack is used to refer to more relaxed
frame geometry. The slacker it is, the more
technical terrain the bike was designed to
handle and the more stable it will feel. As
a general rule, downhill bikes are slacker
than trailbikes, and trailbikes are slacker
than cross-country race bikes.
Tapered: Tapering refers to the narrowing of the diameter of a fork or head tube
as you move down its length.
Whip: A whip is the act of bringing the
rear wheel forward vigorously during a
jump, almost as if the rider were whipping
the air with the wheel. ❏
Roosted: Proceed with caution when
following your buddies down the trail; you
might get roosted.
Scrub: Keep it low, keep it fast.
skill we all
wish we had.