“Scrubbing” jumps is a relatively new technique made famous on the motocross scene by none other than James “Bubba” Stewart. Since the “Bubba Scrub” became a standard technique on the MX scene, it wasn’t long before downhillers were scrubbing the heck out of anything and everything.
While it’s fair to say the technique isn’t crucial all that often on push bikes, the truth is that it looks rad, feels great and is a great way to stay low and hit the backside of short jumps if you are coming in a little too hot. It becomes even trickier once again on a trail bike with your seat up so be sure to drop your seat and take your time when learning how to scrub. Here’s how it’s done:
Step 1 - The set up
Approach the jump in your usual “neutral” position, however you’ll need to be a little lower than usual to allow enough input from your arms and legs to put the bike where you need it to go. Spot the lip of the jump but also pay attention to where the landing is.
Step 2 - Kick the back out
As you roll up the lip, let the bike come up in front and to the side of you whilst aiming to keep the front wheel down low. At the same time, begin to turn the bars in which will help kick the back wheel out slightly and help it clear the top of the lip. By this stage you should be looking at the landing.
Step 3 - Keep it low
Once you’re in the air allow the bike to come up beside you and continue to turn the bars in. The aim is to keep your body low but allow the bike to rise to the side of you as it gets kicked up by the jump. The better you are at it, the lower you will be over the lip. Ideally you shouldn’t be washing off much speed at all during the process. Spot the landing and aim to put your front wheel just over the backside of the landing.
Step 4 - Nose'r in
As you come in for landing, push down on the front end and straighten up your bars. As you straighten your bars, your bike should straighten up at the same time. Ideally you should be coming in nose first for a smooth landing which will help you carry extra speed out of the jump.
Step 5 - Pump on through
As you touch down, push through the landing to get a little extra pump and speed out of the backside of the jump. As throughout the whole process, stay low and keep your legs bent to help soak up the movement of the bike.
Step 6 - Refocus
As you roll out, stand back up and prepare for what’s next in the trail. Comparing your exit speed to your entry speed is the best way to judge how well you have done. If you are landing smooth and just as fast or a little bit faster than the take-off then you are on the right track!
Words: Jared Rando Photos: Jonathan Renton