Now you know what the Gear Shifting Components are, it is time to learn the Very Basics of the Mountain Bike Techniques of Shifting Gear.
* The right-hand lever operates the rear gear (moving the chain across the sprockets).
* The left-hand lever operates the front mechanism, which shifts the chain from one chainwheel to another.
* When the chain is on the big chainwheel you will be in a bigger gear - usually used for riding along the flat or downhill.
* The smaller (inner) chainwheels are used for uphill work, riding with luggage, or into a strong headwind, or perhaps around town when you need a low gear to cope with lots of stopping and starting at traffic lights or junctions.
* With the chain on the smallest rear wheel sprocket, you will be in a big gear, travelling further for each revolution of the pedals.
* The biggest sprocket provides your lowest gear for hill climbing or starting off from junctions.
* Unlike a three-speed hub gear, a derailleur mechanism needs you to keep pedalling to get the chain to shift from one sprocket (or chainwheel) to the next.
* Depending on the size (number of teeth) of the chainwheels and the sprockets there will be some overlap of gear sizes between the different chainwheels.
* Whether you ride on the roads or on trails your gear changing has to be instinctive to avoid any problems with traffic or technical terrain. Therefore it is very necessary to understand how the different Gear Shifting Components act together.
Knowing how to shift gears during Mountain Biking is very important. Remember these guidelines as future reference.