Tune Your Suspension
Having your front fork — and if you have one, rear shock — dialed in can make the difference between floating over obstacles and bouncing off them. Setting up your suspension typically means determining the ideal air pressure for your fork and rear shock and setting the rebound speed. "You want your suspension tuned for your weight and riding style," says Wicks. "It's a little bit intimidating, but it's not that hard." A good bike shop can teach you the basics in short order or failing that, there are plenty of resources online. "These days, no one makes a bad bike, if you have it set up correctly," says Wicks. Taking the time to learn what suspension setup works for you can make a big difference in how your bike performs and how you feel out on the trails.