Flatmattersonline How to: episode one. How to front peg balance.

Hello everyone,

I am getting a few requests to show more how to’s on Flatmattersonline and not only high level riding. So I figured I would branch out with my flatland coaching sessions to instagram, then Youtube. Today I launch episode one of the Flatmattersonline how to, where I describe how to do the balancing stage of the front wheel peg balance to one of my students at my Eastney flatland sessions. Enjoy and have learning flatland.

1. The obvious to begin with, have a bmx bike with pegs. (Here Arthur borrowed my bike).

2. Turn the handlebars at a 90 degree position, notice how Arthur is stood at the beginning of the video.

3. To begin balancing, put your left foot on the peg, left hand on left grip and have your right foot on the floor sideways next to the tyre.

4. Elevate your right foot to the middle of front tyre with your left foot on the front peg.

5. As you elevate your right foot,try to be relaxed and move your foot slightly up and down on the tyre to create the balance point. (refer to Arthur’s technique on video).

The key to learning the front peg balance is to get the following points aligned at the same time, relaxed with point 5, stand up straight, helps also have a focus point to look down (normally the stem/ this may different according to your stance and height).

6. Once you learnt to balance one handed, once you are comfortable. The next stage is no handed balance, use your left leg against the bar to hold the balance point make sure you stood up straight as possible and slowly take your hands off the bars.* it’s really important to remember to keep as still as possible on this trick. Refer to the video, and let us know how you get on.

Flatland is a puzzle, learn to balance first, we shall be back shortly with a how to ride in and out. Then a whole world of flatland fun awaits you! Good luck everybody, tag us when you can balance. Have fun! #bmx #flatland #howtobmx #flatmattersonline #flatmatters #bmxflatland #flatlandbmx

*Arthur appears with permission from his mum.

UK Flatland Championships Day 1

Text: Effraim.
Photos: Matti Hemmings.

Today I made the 6 hour trek from Southsea on the south coast of England to Harrogate, in Yorkshire. Harrogate is in the North of England for all of you across the world that might not know. Harrogate is the home of “Yorkshire Tea”, my favourite brand of tea in the world and what by and large fuels Flatmattersonline updates on the daily. It was pretty awesome to drive past the home of YT today on the way to the Yorkshire events centre for the UK Flatland Championships.

The trek to Harrogate was eventful, with Matti planning my route via the underground (bikes aren’t allowed on the underground) so I missed my train and after a stressful hour or so trying to figure out how I would get to Yorkshire. The guard was nice enough to let me on the train and all was well with the world once again.

When I arrived I was greeted by the man with the largest seatpost in BMX, Matti Hemmings and Davis Dudelis. Matti is out injured so is hobbling about with a swollen ankle. I got in a nice three hour session with Davis getting used to the floor. We have a decent sized floor, fast stone floor, super smooth! After brushing off the initial travel stiffness, I really enjoyed the session, nailing a couple of new lines I am working on whilst Davis was slaying big hop bars to manual bar out with ease, once my session started winding down Davis started playing with rollback grip rides again. Davis is one of the most chilled pros on the scene, Matti wanted to get some more content for the UK Flatland Championships so we fired out a pretty funny short interview that I will get posted as soon as I can. I’m feeling pretty tired now from the travel mostly, a 4am start will do it to you. But I wanted to update you across the globe and let you know what’s going here in the UK, the venue is dialled and we are set for tomorrow’s contest. It’s time for a Yorkshire tea in Yorkshire!

Throwback Thursdays – Worlds Portimao 1998

An absolute belter from the archives for this weeks Throwback Thursdays that was originally filmed by Colin Smith and later edited by Claybom from Brazil. Great riding from the likes of Martti Kuoppa, Andrew Faris, Day Smith, Phil Dolan, Michael Steingraber, Akira Okamura, Marton Szilagyi, Alexis Desolneux, Effraim Catlow, Nathan Penonzek, and many more, this is a good watch!

Repo: UK Flatland Champs / Dreamlands Kent

Text: Effraim.
Photography: Jim Cossey.

Round 1 of the 2018 UK Flatland Championships took place last weekend in Margate, Kent. Margate is a seaside town about an hour and half from central London for all of you reading this outside of the UK. Matti Hemmings once again is the man behind making the event happen, this year a different location and a better set up. Dreamlands, an amusement park smack on Margate seafront which somewhat bizarrely to me, goes in land rather than out towards the sea, two years ago we sat on the seafront having fish n chips after the Wheels and Finns festival and wondered what Dreamlands was. A great use of space and in terms of planning, this place is epic. You wouldn’t know this amusement park was even there, if you drive along the seafront road.

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Repo: Bike Days / Day 1

On Thursday night I flew into Zurich, Switzerland for the annual Bike Days contest. Dan Hennig kindly picked me up from the airport and we kicked it at his new house out in the beautiful countryside on the outskirts of Zurich. Dan picked up Dustyn Alt and Maik Speer on Friday morning before we made the one hour trip to Solothurn.

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The 2017 Flatmattersonline Year End Award Nominees are…..

Happy New Year everyone! It’s time to announce the nominees for the editorial and reader choice 2017 Flatmattersonline Year end awards, thank you to everyone who took the time to vote. As always it is interesting to see what you the reader of Flatmattersonline thinks compared to my editorial votes. And last not certainly not least congratulations to all the nominees.

Flatmatters!

Effraim Catlow

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Battle in the Rockies Part A & B

Mates Tuček documented almost the entire trip of his first time out to the US for the 2017 Battle in the Rockies, check out these Part A and B which document the journey, riding and lifestyle we were living for the week in Colorado. Good vibes!

Catching Up with Todd Carter

I’m really enjoying doing these “Catching Up” interviews and today I interview Todd Carter, one of the smoothest riders in the flatland game and a man that doesn’t get enough credit in the flatland scene. Lot of history with Todd’s longevity in the sport. It was great to interview Todd and hear his story, grab a cuppa and enjoy this episode:

00:56: How long has Todd been riding for, and how did he get into flatland?

3:13: What was Todd’s first flatland competition?

4:38: I never knew that myself and Todd both rode for Hutch, and the Ohio scene shaping Todd’s riding.

8:00: What are some of Todd’s favourite memories from the AFA Masters?

10:29: How flatland is good for physical and emotional health, and forget about life issues?

11:54: What can modern day flatland learn from era such as the AFA masters where there 130 people in Todd’s class?

14:20: Moving from Ohio to Los Angeles and living the Californian dream.

17:45: Moving back to Ohio and building a flatland spot.

21:40: Coming from that era where what music you rode to was a big deal. What music is Todd into?

23:42: Bringing the American Flatland Association back.

26:00: Having two kids that both ride flatland.

29:36: The transition from expert rider to professional.

32:35: Plans for 2018?

33:21: Being a good rolemodel for the flatland scene, and what device would he give to the future generations?

35:47: Any final thanks?

Repo: Battle in the Rockies 2017 Day 4

Text: Effraim.
Photos: Effraim, James McGraw.

Day 4 was the best day yet, I got the flatmatters daily updates done early and walked outside to sunny, but windy as hell conditions. I started washing the floor, which felt like it has become a daily operation. You gotta do what you gotta do to get the best out of riding spots, and James spot is literally perfect. Once his garden gets grassed, I would imagine this spot will stay for the large part dust free. Mates Tucek joined me and helped sweep the spot, I said to Mates I wanted to pull something new today and right as we started filming the winds picked up. Tumble weeds flying past us, and dry leaves smacking you in the face. It felt a little bit like this was a bad idea riding the spot today, but it passed and I really wanted to get back on the progression trail.

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Repo: Battle in the Rockies 2017 Day 3

Day 3 of my annual trip to the Battle in the Rockies contest was awesome. We woke up to sunshine once again, bare in mind the past three years I have visited Colorado it has snowed and generally really cold. I started the day grabbing an early session in on the spot after I hosed down the spot whilst James headed to the airport to pick up Bill Nitschke, I thought I would film a fire hydrant flow line and as I started filming out came James and Mates, if you are on my social media you will have seen that and James’ scream. Sorry for your ears. It was a good start to the day, and today looks the same.

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