BMX Tips

How To X-Up Ride On A BMX!

how to x-up ride bmx

Welcome to my awesome guide on mastering the X-up ride on your BMX.

If you’re ready to add flair to your BMX skills, you’ve come to the right place!

What exactly is an X-up ride in BMX?

It is a trick where the rider rotates the handlebars 180 degrees while the front wheel lifted and then lands with their hands still crossed over each other.

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This creates an “X” shape with the arms, which is maintained as the rider continues to ride.

It’s a semi-challenging trick because it requires the rider to maintain balance and control, all while their arms are crossed in an unnatural position.

If you want to EXPAND your trick repertoire, this guide is tailored just for you.

I will break down the X-up ride step-by-step, making it super accessible and fun to learn.

Are you ready to level up your riding game? Let’s get started.

Why Learn X-Up Rides

Learning the X-Up Ride in BMX is a fantastic idea for several reasons:

  • Skill development: The X-up is a fundamental trick that helps develop your overall bike handling skills. It requires coordination, balance, and precise timing, all essential skills for any BMX rider.
  • Building blocks for advanced tricks: Once you’ve mastered the X-up, you’ll find it easier to progress to more complex tricks. Many advanced BMX maneuvers are variations or combinations that include elements of the X-up.
  • Confidence boost: Successfully learning and executing the X-up can significantly boost your confidence. It’s a impressive trick that feels rewarding to pull off, encouraging you to push your limits further.
  • Fun & creativity: BMX is all about expressing yourself and having fun. The X-up allows for creativity in executing and combining it with other tricks, adding your unique style to your riding. Have you seen any video from Johnny Raekes? He’s a MASTER of X-up rides, grinds, etc.

Overall, learning the X-up Ride is not just about adding another trick to your list; it’s about improving as a rider.

How To X-Up Ride On A BMX (Step-By-Step Guide)

Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to perform an X-up ride like a champ:

Step 1: Get Comfortable With Your BMX

Spend time getting comfortable with your BMX bike. Ensure you are at ease with basic riding, turning, and jumping.

And don’t forget to warm up!

Step 2: Start With Safety Gear

Always wear a helmet, knee pads, elbow pads, and shin pads. Safety is paramount, especially when learning new tricks.

Luckily, when learning the X-up ride on flatground, crashing won’t be as painful. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t wear safety gear – at least BMX helmet!

Step 3: Learn To Handle the Handlebars

learn to handle the handlebars in x-up
Start by practicing the motion of rotating the handlebars while on the ground.

Rotate them 180 degrees so your arms cross, and then bring them back.

As I demonstrate in the video above, rotate the handlebar and the ride with your hands crossed while using one leg to balance.

Once fully comfortable, place the leg on your pedals and start pedaling – yes, with your hands in an X-up position.

Stay at this step for as long as necessary, no rush.

Step 4: Handlebar Turns

When you pull your handlebar off the ground, rotate it as quickly as possible.

Land in an X-up and unrotate it right away. Don’t yet aim for riding like this, just get familiar with doing an X-up and landing it that way.

dont hold your bars too wide

Pro tip: It’s important how you grip your handlebar – the closer together you have your hands, the easier the X-up ride will be.

bring your hands closer together for easier x-up

This is especially important today, when the bars go significantly bigger.

Step 5: Do The X-Up Ride

do the x-up ride on bmx
Once you’re comfortable with handlebar turns and landing with your hands crossed, it’s time for the final step.

The X-up ride!

I recommend you start with a slower speed. Even though balancing is more challenging, it’s better to get comfortable with more speed gradually.

You can ride with your arms crossed for as long as you want.

Maintain your balance and control of the bike.

Step 6: Uncross & Regain Control

Finally, uncross your arms (when you’re done with it) and regain the normal riding position.

Just like you get into the X-up ride by pulling the handlebar up, you get out of it.

Do this smoothly to maintain control.

Step 7: Practice & Progress

Practice the X-up ride regularly.

Start small, with low speed. The next step would be to increase speed and ride in this position for longer distances.

The next and final step is to introduce the X-up ride into and out of tricks, taking your combos to the next level.

Remember, practice is key in BMX.

Each rider progresses at their own pace, so focus on your journey and enjoy the learning process.

Conclusion: Master X-Up Rides!

And there you have it – your journey into mastering the X-up ride on a BMX.

Remember, every expert was once a beginner, and the path to mastery is filled with trial and error.

Don’t be discouraged by the falls; they’re just stepping stones to your success.

The X-up ride is not just a trick; it’s a testament to your dedication, balance, and willingness to push the boundaries.

As you continue to practice, you’ll find that what once seemed challenging will become second nature.

Each time you land an X-up, you’re building confidence, skill, and a deeper connection with your BMX.

So, keep riding, keep experimenting, and most importantly, keep enjoying the process.


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About Author

Rok has been riding BMX for 20+ years, and when he's not having a session, he binges on videos, new product drops and works on creating the best content (sharing tips, tricks & more to make riding bikes easier for you) for The BMX Dude.