Since its creation in early 1970s, BMX riding has progressed into a number of different methods mainly due to the “freestyling” skills of its pioneers. This area of steady development has endeared the sport to many. But just like any creative sport having its own sanctioning body, such as slam dunk, figure skating, driving or gymnastics competitions, categories must be set and guidelines applied whilst creativity is still inspired and perfect setup targeted.
Thus, freestyle BMX or stunt riding now features 5 disciplines: street, park, vert, trails/dirt jump and flatland.
Flatland BMX is usually a riding style performed on smooth flat floors sans the ramps, jumps or grind rails. A nice phrase to put it will be “a form of artistic cycling using a mixture of breakdancing and encompassing certain areas of fighting styles and Zen meditation as a discipline.”
Most flatlanders would tend to be very dedicated to mastering their flatland procedures, not like the riders of other disciplines who are able to switch from street to part to dirt jump and vert at any given time. One of the main causes of this is actually the decreased stability of handling smaller bikes on ramps, dirt and street; yet the shorter wheelbase makes it much simpler for them to spin or stand the bike on one wheel.
Their tricks are carried out by balancing and spinning around the bike in a variety of unexpected positions, working with four of either knurled/grip taped aluminium or plastic pegs—one on the end of each and every wheel hub or axle—to stand on and control it to even more innovative acts.
Depending on their style and inclination, flatlanders would also opt for a front brake, a dual front brake with two levers then one brake cable, front and rear brakes, or no brakes at all. The flatland bike would also have specialized frames with geometry suitable for the users’ needs, when it comes to head tube angle, top tube length, and all that jazz.