How To Do Wheelies On Your Dirt Bike

Dirt bike rider doing a wheelie at the sand dunes.

Knowing how to do wheelies on your dirt bike is not only fun and looks ace, but it can get you through and over some tricky and otherwise very difficult situations. If you’re trail riding you will need to be able to pop the front wheel up to get over logs, cross streams and challenge rutted or uneven terrain.

I personally believe it is far easier to do wheelies on a four-stroke than a two-stroke as the power is more predictable and a lot smoother. But if you can wheel stand a two-stroke properly – you can wheelie anything.

Below are some tips that will help you master the art of wheelies – and may also prevent you from flipping your bike and busting yourself up.

  1. Grip your bike firmly with your legs and sit in a central position.
  2. Keep one finger on the clutch and your foot over the rear brake. If you ever feel like you’re going to flip your bike, give the rear brake a light tap to bring her back down.
  3. Choose a higher gear like 3rd or 4th if you are trying to do long, flat beach-style wheelies. Using lower gears can actually be more difficult to keep steady. To lift the wheel up, be in mid-range revs, then apply a quick burst on the accelerator. If needed, pull back lightly on the handlebars at the same time. Once you get good at this, try it standing up.
  4. It’s all about body position, balance and the right amount of acceleration / revs.
  5. Practice. Practice. Practice! The only way I got good at this was by finding a nice long stretch of land (the beach in my case) and practicing. I started off by just lifting the front wheel for a second. Then learned how to hold it up for longer. After a fair bit of practice, you’ll find you can change through the gears as you go and hold the wheelie for as long as you like. There’s a sweet spot – or balancing point where the bike feels weightless. This is where you want to be.  It’s a great feeling.

If you reckon you’ve got that sorted, try this to hone your skills…

  • In the seated position and using first gear, give her a burst of revs, drop the clutch and lift the front wheel. Using the clutch, accelerator and rear brake, try and hold the front wheel up for as long as possible but move forward as slowly as possible. This looks really cool when pulled off, but it is much harder than it looks!

Got Your Wheelies Nailed? Check Out Some More Dirt Bike Riding Tips

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