Could trail centres be about to get a lot busier?

A British Cycling advice web page is encouraging road riders to ride mountain bikes over winter to help improve their fitness and skills on the bike.

Road riding in winter can be potentially very dangerous with dark nights, icy roads and impatient drivers all hazards to a cyclist, furthermore corrosive salt can be harmful to bikes. By taking in some mountain bike trails, road cyclists can avoid all these hazards and enjoy traffic free riding.

British Cycling lists a number of physical benefits that roadies can gain from rougher riding. These include: boosting top end power, experiencing a total body workout and improving pedalling efficiency. However, it believes the downside to mountain biking are that it takes you longer to recover, you are less able to maintain a constant intensity and there is a greater risk of injury.

Road cyclists can boost their bike handling skills on mountain bike trails. The road offers very few technical challenges but mountain bike trails encourage you to constantly move around the bike, making you a far more dynamic rider.

We know that many cyclists enjoy riding both disciplines, and there’s always cyclocross for those that want the ultimate mix of both. As mountain biking grows will we see more road riders crossing over? What do you think the benefits of mountain biking are for road riders?

You can read the full British Cycling article here