Aerobars -- Aerodynamically designed handlebars that point
toward the front of the bike and have elbow or arm rests.
Ankling -- Pedaling technique which helps build speed and
efficiency. For this technique, toes should be pointed slightly
downward at the bottom of the stroke, slightly upward at
the top of the stroke.
Arm Signals -- Also called hand signals. The direction
in which the arm is positioned to indicate the route you
are turning: left, right, slow down or stop.
ATB -- All-Terrain Bicycle; also known as a Mountain Bike.
Axle -- The shaft on which the wheel revolves.
Bar Ends -- Extensions that can be added on to the handlebars
to allow for better and more efficient body positioning
when cruising and climbing.
Bar End Shifter -- A gear-shifting system that is operated
by twisting the ends of aerobars.
Bead -- The outside edge of the tire, which is stiffened
by a wire.
Bike, Bicycle, Cycle -- A vehicle propelled by human power
with two wheels, one in front of the other and having a
saddle for the rider. The device is steered by turning a
handlebar and driven by pedals.
Binder Bolt -- Any bolt used to attach a part to a bicycle.
Bottom bracket -- The mechanism at the bottom of the bicycle
frame which holds the spindle and crank.
Brakes -- A lever that helps you to slow down and/or stop.
Brake Shoe -- A rubber pad which stops the bike by pressing
on the tire’s rim, creating friction.
Cables -- Metal wires twisted into cables and sometimes covered with plastic
coasting. Cables are used to connect the brake levers to the brakes and to
connect the gear shift levers to the derailleur.
Cadence -- The regular and rhythmic pace at which a cyclist
pedals the bike.
Caliper Brakes -- Any bicycle braking system which works
by opening and closing two brake shoes on the tire’s
rim in a clamping motion, like jaws. Caliper brakes’ hand
controls are usually mounted on the handlebars.
Catch Air -- A type of bicycle stunt riding.
Chain -- A connected series of metal links.
Chain Rings -- The toothed wheels that move the bike chain.
The chain fits over a chain ring’s teeth. When the
rider pedals, the chain ring turns.
Chainset -- The crank, chain rings, and bottom bracket.
Chainstays -- The part of the bicycle frame that runs parallel
to the chain. It connects the bottom bracket to the rear
Chainwheel -- One or more large gears with teeth, located
near the pedals. Also sometimes called the front gear set.
The chainwheel is attached to the bottom bracket and crank.
Click Shifting -- A gear shift lever that clicks into position
when you have hit the right spot for each gear.
Coaster Brake -- (Sometimes called Foot Brakes.) A brake
system located inside the hub of the rear wheel and activated
by pedaling backwards.
Cranks -- The two L-shaped metal arms on either side of
the bike that run from the pedals to the bottom bracket
Crossover Bike -- Also called a half-breed, hybrid or city
bike, this is a cycle that combines elements of both road
bikes and mountain bikes.
Cruiser -- Simple medium or heavyweight single-speed bicycle
with coaster brakes and fenders.
Cyclometer -- A measuring tool for a bicycle, usually measuring
speed and distance traveled.
Derailleur -- The mechanism that guides the chain and allows it to be shifted
from one gear to another. Derailleur is a French word which means, "to
derail" or cause the chain to come off the rail. There are two derailleurs
on a mountain bike: front and rear.
Doubletrack -- Trail wide enough for two cyclists to ride
side by side.
Down Tube -- Part of the bicycle frame which slants downward
at an angle. It runs from the head tube to the bottom bracket.
Dropout -- Small, slotted openings which hold the front
and rear wheel axles. On many bikes the dropouts do not
appear to be separate parts. They are merely the openings
at the ends of two other frame sections: the seat stays
and the front fork.
Fire Road -- A dirt mountain road wide enough for a truck and often used by mountain bikers.
Fork -- The fork is a double-pronged section of the frame
which holds the front wheel and houses the steerer tube.
Many front forks come equipped with shocks designed to absorb
bumps for a smoother ride.
Freestyle -- A type of competition involving stunt riding,
usually performed on curved wooden ramps called quarterpipes.
Freewheel -- The set of gears or sprocket wheels attached
to the rear wheel of the bike. This allows the rear wheel
to keep rolling when you stop pedaling.
Gear Ratio -- A number which indicates the relationship between two gears and
tells you how much work a particular combination of gears will do. To get the
gear ratio, divide the number of teeth in the chainwheel by the number of teeth
in the freewheel.
Gooseneck -- The handlebar stem, which fits inside the
Handlebars -- Use them to steer. This is where your grips, shifters, and brake
levers are mounted.
Headset -- The part of a bicycle that houses the bearings
that allow the steerer tube to rotate.
Head Tube -- Short vertical tube at the very front or head
of the bike. The hand tube contains the stem (which connect
to the handlebars) and the steerer tube from the front fork.
Helmet -- A protective head covering.
Hub -- The part of a wheel that supports the spokes and
holds the ball bearings that enable the wheel to spin smoothly.
Bicycles have tow hubs, one at the center of each wheel.
Index Shifting -- A gear-shifting system in which gears
can be clicked from position to position, making selection
Motocross -- A cross-country bike race held on a dirt track.
Odometer -- A device which measures the distance traveled.
Paddle -- A lever-like part worked by the foot located in the middle of the
bicycle to make it move.
Panniers -- Pouches or saddlebags which are mounted on
a bike carrier and used to carry items.
Quick Releases -- Devices that allow you to quickly tighten or loosen your
seat post and wheels.
Reflector -- A device that reflects light, to be located at the front, and
back of the bike along with both tires. To make yourself more visible.
Rims -- The two metal hoops on which the tubes and tires
Road Bike -- A Lightweight bike with dropped handlebars.
Saddle, Seat -- A place for the rider to sit on top of the bike.
Seat Post -- The tube that holds the saddle and goes inside
the seat tube
Seatstays -- A section of the frame which runs from the
seat tube to the rear wheel dropouts.
Seat Tube -- The more or less vertical tube on the bike
frame which holds the seat post and saddle.
Sew-Ups -- A kind of tire which is actually sewn around
the tube. Also called tubular tires, these are used mostly
Shifter -- The mechanism that allows you to change gears.
On most mountain bikes, the shifters are on the handlebars.
Shock Absorbers or Suspension -- Springs or other devices
on bikes, cars, or other vehicles that absorb bumps and
other jolting movements so that the ride feels smoother.
Singletrack -- Trail wide enough for one rider.
Snake Bites -- Slang for the kind of tire puncture that
occurs when an underinflated tire flattens from pressure
against the wheel rim.
Spin -- To pedal with smooth, fast, and efficient strokes.
Spokes -- The thin metal rods that connect a wheel’s
hub to the rim.
Sprocket -- One of the teeth on a gear or cog.
Switchback -- A very tight turn on a road or trail. Also,
what a rider does when making one of these tight turns.
Tandem -- A bicycle for two riders.
Time Trial -- A timed race in which the racers start one
at a time and race against the clock. Some times trials
measure the distance traveled in a set amount of time. Others
measure the time it takes to cycle for a set distance.
Tire -- A hoop or band of metal, rubber, air-filled rubber
tube, or the likes, placed around a wheel of a bicycle to
form the tread.
Toe Clips -- A small housing on the pedals used to hold
the foot on the pedal.
Top Tube -- The top horizontal tube on a bike frame that
runs from the head tube to the seat tube.
Touring -- Extended bicycle trips, lasting anywhere from
several days to weeks, months or years.
Travel -- The maximum distance a bike’s suspension
moves up and down when a rider hits a major bump.
Tridem -- A bicycle for three riders.
Velodrome -- A track with steep banks or berms, used for bicycle track races.
Washboard -- Soil ripples on a trail that make the ride very bumpy.
Washout -- A water-eroded area on a dirt or gravel trail.
Wheel -- A circular frame arranged to turn on - to roll
along to travel smoothly.
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Mountain Biking (Book by: Chris Hayhurst)
Wheels! The Kid’s Bike (Book by: Megan Stine)
Webster’s New World Book Dictionary