How To Use Road Bicycle Gears

How To Use Road Bicycle Gears

Road bicycle gears enable riders to ride at a comfortable effort level over almost any terrain, but, to be able to do this, riders first must be able to use their gears intuitively. In this video, Manon explains how to use road bike gears, as well as sharing some handy tips to help fix any problems you might encounter and ride more smoothly out on the road!

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ES_Windows Down (Instrumental Version) – Velee
ES_Mind and Flesh (Instrumental Version) – Roof
ES_Death Dance (Instrumental Version) – Luftmensch

Photos: © Velo Collection (TDW) / Getty Images & © Bettiniphoto /

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Readers Comments (50)

  1. When she said "the very first bicycle-only had one gear" like it was crazy then I’m over here only using one gear when I’m climbing and riding

  2. 20 years ago I was just getting into clipless pedals. I stopped while being in essentially biggie smalls. There was a very slight uphill, and when I stood on the right pedal my bike didn’t move an inch. I slowly started falling toward my clipped-in pedal and got all the way to the ground before I unclipped. Not hurt, just embarrassed.

    Moral of the story, downshifting when you stop is a good idea lol.

  3. Another female first rate presenter on the GCN show. Go Manon 🙂

  4. Angela Mcdougall turner February 27, 2021 @ 9:47 pm


  5. WHY am I watching this… oh.. .that’s right… Manon…

  6. Completely avoided the important chain-line consideration?

  7. Timothy james Fernandez February 27, 2021 @ 9:51 pm

    Can someone pls change your logo and jersey style.

  8. This is indeed a confusing topic…😆 at least for me…

  9. ConteudoAnimal com br February 27, 2021 @ 9:53 pm

    Manon you are the best on this channel !!! … maybe a join with Matt Stephens would be the most perfect channel regarding road / track cycling

  10. OMG! Will the next episode show how to ride or review which the best balance bike for adults is? 🤔

  11. Next week on the GCN channel: Wheels, what are they? How do they work? Why are they round? Would square wheels work better? Do we really need 2 wheels? Isn’t that just extra weight? All these questions and less answered in the next show.

  12. Being a layman and thinking of getting into roadbike discipline this is tremendously helpful.

  13. Love GCN videos. They are great. Can you pleqse please please tell me what the music that starts at 4:21 is. Tried all of the songs on the description and was not able to find it. Thanks a bunch.

  14. She’s lovely

  15. I have just upgraded from a boardman hybrid ( owned for 3 years )that had such a tiny small ring ,the chain used to trying to get on the big ring if it was not judged carefully ! Gave up using the small ring ! Just upgraded to half decent road bike Scott addict 20 and after a 1000 km of cycling I just tried the small ring today going uphill ! Would sub 22 kmh be ideal for the small ring up hill

  16. I’ve got my first triathlon start a year ago and during the bicycle stage I first discovered that my ring tend to go over the highest chain ring when shifting up. So the chain flew off in the very important situation and I started to think on the better place to stop and rearrange it. Surprisingly for myself I figured out on how to take it back on the ring while riding – simply put front derailleur on the low chain ring position and slowly pedal up. I still don’t know how to fix this issue mechanically but I’ve got used to do more smooth shifting yet loosing some precious time before the downhill especially.

  17. "it even could be your gear cables"

    My funny gear story is that I changed my cassette, chain and bought all the right equipment to change these parts, while the problem was the gear cable being filthy and not releasing its tension smoothly. I bought €150 worth of stuff for my bike, but as it turned out I only needed €15. Moral of the story: don’t assume the gear cable is the last thing you should check like I saw on numerous esteemed online sources. I’d advise to make sure you have a clean and functioning gear cable before you go changing half your group set.

    But I am also very happy with my new cassette and chain.

  18. Manon is so cheerful and positive, great video though!
    I just got my first road bike from Halfords, the Carrera Vanquish Road Bike 2020. Already done like 3 or 4 rides, an hour each. Watching this video has taught me very well. I am trying to increase distance/time each ride but I’m new to riding more on the road as I made the switch from mountain biking. Will be watching more of your videos in due time.

  19. When talking about changing down at lights Manon should also have mentioned doing the same for a sharp bend.. I see so many people struggling out of a hairpin in the wrong gear, instead of being able to accelerate away.

  20. I don’t shift gears when going uphill.. Instead I will shout ora ora oraaa and spin faster

  21. I have maybe a silly question, but perhaps someone can help me:
    What could be a logic reason to change gears at the back with the right hand, and braking the front with this hand,
    and shifting the front gears (if there is more than one sprocket) with the left hand, and braking the back?

    Wouldn’t it be much more logically, to brake and shift the front with one hand and brake and shift the back with the other hand?

  22. it is a lovely video..👍 nice explanation. not to forget to mention the lovely lady 😍☺️. thaank you sweet heart made me smile a whole vid.

  23. Thanks for this one. 🤣💖🙏🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

  24. What is this gorgeous ladies’s accent?

  25. A note from a real pro, an ex bike messenger with a decade of bike courier service throughout Canadian winters. You DO NOT ride big ring in front and big cassette in back. You want to keep your chain lined up relatively straight. So on a 3 ring front with say a 9 speed cassette in back, you only want to drop or go up about 3 gears in back before switching front derailer rings. So, small ring for the biggest 3 or 4 cogs in back. Then the middle ring for the next 3 then the big ring in front for the tallest 3 or 4 gears in back. Big ring in front and big cog in back stresses out the rear derailer and can wear it out quicker. Plus you sometimes get the chain rubbing on the front derailer mechanism.

  26. I’m just here because of Manon.

  27. Still can’t get over how bling Manon’s forks are.

  28. I’m 5’2 in hight what size of road bike do I need to ride

  29. Big chain ring make me ride fast, small chain make me go up hill, big cog make pedaling harder, small cog make pedaling easier

  30. I just want to know one thing.
    WTF do people want Prestas?

  31. Manon is a great presenter!

  32. …….when you have been riding your SRAM 1x gravel bike a lot and change to the Shimano road bike – first 5 minutes can be sketchy!

  33. My friend told me that he thought each gear was a differend mode and he never changed geare because he lost the owners manual😂😂😂

  34. Nice bike..

  35. Global Cycling Network February 27, 2021 @ 10:19 pm

    Do you have a friend who’s new to cycling? Why not share this video with them! Let us know if you found this video helpful for your riding in the comments below 👇

  36. Manon, your grandpa, Alan Rickman, was a great actor.

  37. Rode Tour of the Peak sportive a good few years ago, couple of hours in there was quite a fast descent into a forest area with sharp left hander at the bottom, what you couldn’t see was this went straight into a very steep uphill ramp. All you could hear was that awful crunching noise of people desperately trying to get down their cassette under load. I rode this 3 times over the years and I didn’t get it right until the third one

  38. My friend doesn’t understand his gears when we go riding so I always bring him on hilly trails so that he tries fakes that he’s not dying on the climbs with his huge ratios

  39. Bring back half-step gearing!

  40. Had the gear cable go on me once. Screwed the bottom stop right in on the derailer which left it running in a bit more favourable gear. So wasn’t quite so bad, but a good tip should it happen to you

  41. I was riding out of the saddle on a climb then my chain jumped then i crash in someone’s front garden while there was a party going on that house

  42. Nice one Manon

  43. I always keep my gears on 7 cuz I like how hard it makes it and I have a pretty good bike

  44. I hadn’t a clue how to change gears as I’m new to the world of cycling. Thanks for informing us newbies so well Manon.

  45. Hi all, semi new to cycling and have a question. Sorry in advance if i don’t use correct terminology…

    I have a bike with 3 gears in the front and 9 in the back. I find myself riding with my 2 front and anywhere between 7 and 4 in the back. I cycle between the 7 and 4 depending on the incline or decline, trying not to change more than 2 gears on a single hill mid-climb or descent, and pre-empt what gear i will be comfortable in as i approach so i maintain a consistent cadence.

    Question: Am i making best use of my shifting? It seems this video may suggest shifting more with my front gears to tackle slopes. Any thoughts?

    My concern is if i use my front gears more, i often then have to adjust my rear gears anyway because it will then be too easy or hard to pedal. I rarely switch my front gears because of this, but am trying to be mindful not to cross-chain.

    Thx in advance. Cheers!

  46. I got back into cycling last year after about 10 years. I thought it would be a good idea to dust off my old road bike and take it for a 20mile spin. Unfortunately, I had forgotten that it had down tube gear leavers and wasn’t working particularly well, jumping to harder gears. I also had forgotten how hard it was to unclip your shoes when your legs are completely goosed! I was reminded of all of this when I was half way up a very steep climb, my gears jumped, I could no longer pedal. Luckily, I managed to unclip one of my feet just in time. Unluckily, my bike was falling to the opposite side!

  47. Very Nice video! Next Manon’s video could be some tips on changing gears while cornering, how to approach and exit the corner in the most efficient way.

  48. This is so much better than the past videos y’all made about changing gears it’s simple. It is hard to find a video that explains it like I am a 5 year old which is what I am looking for.

  49. If I’ve told you once, I’ve told your a million times…don’t exaggerate!!!

  50. 2:45 boys will be boys and will always here something different though 😏

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