The MTB Hopper kept cropping in my social media feeds. I kept seeing images and films of people enjoying this portable ramp. It looked like a complete blast. I had to have a go!
I happened to mention it to my mentor at MBCUK and suggested that he look into it as a coaching tool. He contacted MTB Hopper and they sent him one to try. Seeing as I suggested it to him, I got the first go!
We pulled the MTB Hopper out of the box up at Adderstone Field at Dalby Forest. he didn’t bring the tabletop part so we’d be jumping onto a flat landing, but that was OK.
Assembly was pretty easy and took the two of us about 10 minutes. It’s one of those processes that will get easier once you’ve done it a few times.
First go I was surprised at how whippy it felt. This thing let’s you get some height (even without the optional extension).
After a few goes each we decided to bring the bunnyhop bar to simulate a gap jump. We started at about a bike length. What fun! We were soon moving the bar further away to see how far we could go. It reminded me of my childhood days, messing around with home-made ramps on BMXs.
Our conversation soon turned to coaching applications. This thing is ideal for coaching!
- You can set it up almost anywhere. Grassy fields can be less intimidating to people getting started with jumps.
- We had it set up on a gentle decline. No having to push back up bike park or 4x tracks, just loop around and hit it again. It’s easy to get lots of attempts in a short space of time, perfect for building confidence!
- It’ll always be the same shape. Using jumps to coach at bike parks and skills loops is OK, but those jumps are different shapes at different venues, they can even change shape over time at the same venue. What’s more, they’re usually in a row of 3 or more, each requiring a different technique. This can be challenging for those new to jumping. So much easier to focus on 1 jump and get comfortable before changing up.
In short, the MTB Hopper is an awesome tool for teaching people to jump. I was so impressed that the MTB Hopper is now my tool of choice for the Mission MTB Airtime Course.
I’m looking forward to spending some more time with the MTB Hopper. I took it out last week for a short session down a lane near where I live…