One of the most basic BMX moves is the wheelie. In contrast to manuals, you must pedal while performing a wheelie to maintain balance. You do this by lifting your front wheel off the ground while moving forward.

With some practice, you'll become more adept at BMX wheelies and be able to combine them with guides to connect some of the trickier BMX moves. Learn how to wheelie on a BMX bike in this helpful guide.

Step-By-Step Guide For Doing Your First BMX Wheelie

1. Find A Good Spot To Practice

You will require a flat ground area 40 to 50 meters long. Ensure that it is a stretch with no traffic or onlookers. The technique is best performed on concrete. However, if you keep falling, consider practicing on grass first before moving to concrete. 

"Use the right equipment, such as knee and elbow pads, a helmet, an L-guard, etc., to prevent serious injuries if you fall. Perform the movements in a park on the grass, and then practice riding your BMX on concrete until you feel comfortable doing so, advises Baroda resident and five-year rider Bhavesh Virwani.

2. Practice Off Your BMX Bike

Put your hands on the handlebars and stand behind the bicycle. Pull the bike upwards and toward you to gain a sense of the bike's weight. Try it a few times to get a feel for how the bike moves when the front wheel lifts.

how to do a wheelie on a bmx bike

3. Learn The Push And Pop Movement

The push-and-pop maneuver is crucial to pulling off a manual or wheelie. This entails depressing the pedal and raising the handlebar at the same time. Now that you have gotten comfortable with whatever bike you have, it is time to put the dominant foot forward.

With your hands on the handlebars and your dominant foot planted firmly on the pedal, take a backward stance behind the bike to learn the push-and-pop motion. Put pressure on the pedal with your foot and simultaneously lift up on the handlebars. When you try this move, ensure the bike isn't leaning to one side.

4. Learn How To Bail

In all extreme sports, the bailout is essential. It occurs when you understand something is amiss with the technique and take precautions to avoid getting wounded.

You often have your full weight behind the bike when doing a manual or wheelie, making it more likely that something will go wrong and cause you to fall backward.

Before you fall and injure yourself, the bailout is to swiftly place your feet firmly on the ground behind the bike.

5. Practice Manuals On The BMX Bike

Wheelies can only be improved by performing manuals and practicing often. Consider this a crucial step for mountain bikes or a must for other bikes, but it will only benefit you in the long run. 

The front wheel needs to lift up. Thus, you need to shift your body weight back and pull the handlebars. You respond to this by softly shifting your weight forward once again.

Here are some ideas for making the manuals simpler:

  • The bicycle must be 40 degrees above the ground. 
  • Arms must be straight. 
  • For balance, the rider's legs must be bent to drive them inward and backward. Lean slightly forward; there's no rush; just make sure you're not pedaling during this process.

6. Practice The Wheelie On Your BMX Bike

You can move on to the wheelie if you feel confident performing the manual. Finding the ideal equilibrium point while seated is crucial while performing a wheelie. 

If you did this correctly, you are currently doing a wheelie. It involves rolling off the bike while seated, bending your chest into the handlebars, pushing and popping motions, and holding the front wheel around 40–45 degrees above the ground with bent elbows. Once the front wheel is off the ground, you stabilize the bike and continue to cycle.

how to wheelie on a bmx bike

Are BMX Bikes Good For Wheelies?

The BMX bike is a superbike made explicitly for pulling a wheelie. Because of the compact frames, strong components, and fat tires used in these bikes' construction. These characteristics help it maintain stability and endure the pressure required to pull wheelies confidently.

Related Article - Best BMX Bikes For Beginners

Why Should You Learn How To Wheelie?

Wheelies are essential biking skills. Wheelies let you ride a bicycle while maintaining the bike in the air and maneuvering various obstacles. When aiming for stylish cycling, wheelies are the ultimate expression of happiness.

Aside from that, it gives you a professional appearance and a lovely feeling! You will always look amazing if you master the perfect wheelie, whether you are riding a standard bike or a mountain bike.

See Also - Guide To BMX Training For Beginners

What Size BMX Bike Is Suitable For Wheelies?

A properly fitted bike will be more enjoyable to ride, more efficient, and more comfortable. You should select the appropriate bike size depending on the bike, your height, riding style, and preferences. You can use this bike size chart to help them select the proper size. 

To get started, consider your riding style, and consider your height.

Read Also - What Size BMX Bike Do I Need?

wheelie on a bmx bike

How Do You Wheelie A Small BMX Bike?

  • Lower your seat. Your seat position will help you maintain your balance and center of gravity as you ride the wheelie while seated. 
  • Shift the bike into medium or low gear, then start rolling. 
  • Lower yourself so that the handlebars support your weight. 
  • Adjust the cranks so that they are at 11:00. 
  • Depress the pedals and raise the handlebars at the same time.
  • Instantly lean back as though you were sitting in a rocking chair and pedal. Otherwise, you risk rolling backward if you don't trust your rear brake. 
  • Spread your arms wide and take a seat on the edge of the seat. 
  • Maintain a thumb on the back wheel while firmly gripping the handle. 
  • Continuously feather the brake to help control speed and avoid falling on your butt.
  • Relax. The front tire height should be fairly high.
  • Start regulating the vertical and sideways balances.
  • If leaning too far back, use the rear brake or pedal to correct the vertical balance (if your front wheel begins to drop). 
  • Don't wait too long to combat the sideways balance; if you do, it will be impossible to recover. 
  • Extend a knee or foot or turn the handles in reverse to correct the sideways balance. (Before you get off, ensure the handlebars are straight.) 
  • To exit the move, allow the front wheel to drop.

How Do You Wheelie On A Mountain Bike?

1. Put On A Helmet

The manual wheelie will move you faster than the pedal wheelie, which increases the risk of falling. Knowing that you would be fully protected if you make mistakes and fall will help you feel more at peace when wearing a helmet.

Get Your Gear - Best Helmets For BMX Riders

2. Start Moving At A Medium Speed On A Moderate Incline

Once you've mastered your balance with this wheelie, it will be simpler to coast down a slope. The downward slope will assist the bike in going at a constant speed because you won't be peddling.

3. Place The Pedals At The Appropriate Position

In the 9 and 3 o'clock positions, align the cranks to level with one another. Stand up on the pedals and maintain a slight knee bend. Ensure your knees are aligned with the pedals before making the forward thrust. 

Just behind the center, your weight should be. The backward motion will cause the cranks to turn slightly, but pedaling is unnecessary.

4. Lean Over The Handlebars 

Your weight should transfer backward to elevate the front wheel, with the handlebars only being raised marginally. Keep your feet centered on the pedals and your arms locked straight. At this point, your back should be behind the seat, and your body should be positioned in a "U" form with your arms and legs straight.

5. Your Weight Should Be Centered Over The Rear Wheel

You need to identify and keep a point of balance above the rear wheel so that you may ride with the front wheel off the ground. To rebalance yourself, push forward with your feet on the pedals while extending your arms vertically and leaning back. Do not pedal.

6. Lift The Front Wheel Between One And One And A Half Feet

Maintain your equilibrium and coast for however long it is necessary. To pull the wheel down, if you find yourself slipping too far back, lightly apply the rear brakes. Push outwards on the pedals and rock your hips backward if the front wheel starts to fall forward.

By raising the bike this way, you can better balance because your upper body is in harmony with the bike. You will also learn how much force is needed to lift the bike off your feet. When we encourage people to practice this step, some of them don't understand.

7. Steadily Lower The Front Wheel

To gently lower the wheel, either tilt your body forward or lightly apply the back brakes. The primary key is to make the pulling force stronger than the pushing force. The forward motion should be powerful to avoid falling backward while popping a wheelie.

Make sure the road is clear before completing the wheelie if you're dodging obstacles on the course; putting the wheel down squarely onto a mountain or branch could result in a fall.

Learn More - BMX Bike Vs Mountain Bike

how to wheelie on a mountain bike


Many people despise following instructions. They immediately get started by hopping on the bike and tugging it in their direction. They stumble a lot, and it takes time, but they finally learn the hard way, so to avoid this, ensure you learn and practice frequently.