Young Deakan had come a long way in a short time, but he needed to stand up more and jump without the front dropping. Does this sound like your young one? Join us for our excursion to the Viking town of Dannevirke.
It is always hard to get kids standing and then jumping well with the combination of a KX65 with a body armour/neck brace combo. It can be done, it just takes some extra homework. Any rider in this situation with some idea of self preservation will choose to sit down and jump small enough to stay safe. The first step to fixing this without changing his set up was getting him to bend in the waist, as you so often hear me talk about in these lessons.
I got my thumbs dug in to his lower back while he was standing with his knees behind the fuel tank. It is never fun for the rider, but he obliged quickly by rotating his pelvis forward before I caused too much pain. This is crucial, and he was able to stand much easier having sorted that out because he could now look further ahead.
The problem on jumps was that his knees wanted to collapse forward on the upramp of a jump, and even worse on landings. That was a recipe for the front dropping, but there was something else that compounded the problem.
Because of his natural caution on jumps, he tended to shut the throttle off on the upramp to avoid jumping big. Unfortunately that means the front will drop, so we needed some solid power off the upramp.
Having the knees locked in to the seat with solid power off the upramp, Deakan started looking good. Only time and effort will help him make it consistent, but I was glad to get him on the right track so early in his riding life. I know that his dad would have been happy to see him standing so much, especially seeing as I coached him many years ago as well.