35 BMX Terms

Bicycle motocross, or BMX for short, is a sport that has been around since the early 1970s. It involves riding bicycles off-road, on tracks with jumps and ramps called “dirt bikes.” Riders use their hands to balance themselves while biking over obstacles. This blog post discusses common words you may not know related to BMX riders.

35 Common BMX Terms

Some of these terms are tough to pronounce at first glance, but once you get them down they become second nature!

  • Alligator Pit: Any obstacle that could seriously injure someone.
  • Bank: a large, sloping hill or ramp used in BMX racing
  • Barspin: when a rider brings their front wheel around and then swings it back to its original position with his hands on the handlebars.
  • Biff: to crash.
  • Biker: someone who rides BMX bikes.
  • Blow: when you don’t get enough air on your trick and land before reaching an obstacle. It can also mean expertly riding over obstacles or doing tricks at high speeds.
  • Butcher: if people are trying to do stunts with their bodies in a way that looks like they have no control over how their body moves during the process, this word for them! To butcher means to cut meat badly; so butchering something would be cutting it up improperly.
  • Case: when kids break both of their wrists while biking off-road without any protection on their hands, this word is used to describe what it looks like.
  • Clean: when a rider does all of the tricks they intended to do without getting off balance and going into an awkward position; also called “flawless.”
  • Combo: two or more stunts that are connected together in sequence so that the bike can’t stop after one trick before continuing with another.
  • Dead Sailor: The rider takes a trick in mid-air and the bike falls to the ground before he can complete his intended aerial move.
  • Dialed: using BMX bike in a way that is difficult to do.
  • Dubs: Twenty-inch bike wheels, dubs, are the standard size for BMX.
  • Eat: if someone ends up eating dirt or sand after they fall off their BMX bike, this term can be used to describe it! It’s often spelled with two words like eat dirt because of how much the person ate during the process.
  • Endo: a trick where riders hold on to one hand and then use their body weight to break traction with gravity while making circular motions before landing on the ground again.
  • Flip: there are different types of flips including but not exclusive to the “Rockstar,” the “Nosegrind,” and the “Stalefish.”
  • Flow: when a rider is able to do tricks at high speeds without missing an obstacle.
  • Gnar: something that’s gnarly would be hardcore or tough or something that is particularly cool or awesome. 
  • Huck: to give something a try.
  • Hucker: someone who hucks.
  • Launch: this term is used when a rider doesn’t jump from the ground before riding on an obstacle like stairs or ramps; it can also mean starting to ride off-road without any pedaling.
  • Loop Out: when you are able to do tricks while spinning around in circles, but then your bike starts moving faster than you anticipated and causes you to crash out of control.
  • Mission: riding under the cover to avoid police and security.
  • OTB:  it stands for going over the handlebars.
  • Pinch the Biscuit: this is an easy trick to do, which is to grip the seat with your legs during a barspin. But it’s also dangerous because there isn’t much protection for your hands if you fall over while doing it.
  • Poser: people who ride BMX bikes in a way that looks like they’re trying too hard; these people might even be wearing outfits with bright colors instead of riding clothes so they stand out more next to other riders (even though bikes are usually black).
  • Pull: what felt like something difficult at first becomes easier with practice because you know what to do.
  • Sandbagger: in BMX this usually means not telling anyone that the person can’t ride or just doing easy tricks like spins and manuals while pretending it’s hard on purpose.
  • Scorpion: when riders need both hands for stability so their feet don’t touch the ground, but then their bike starts moving faster than anticipated causing them to crash out of control at an angle (most likely hitting dirt from back-to-front).
  • Shredder: another term used by BMXers for people who love bikes and riding aggressively, often throwing their bikes into all types of obstacles.
  • Sketch: something that’s sketchy would be dangerous, but in BMX it means when a rider does tricks while being unstable on the bike because they’re off-balance or not balanced enough; also known as challenging yourself to do more than you wanted to.
  • Snake: this term is used for people who cut in front of someone, interrupting their run or causing an accident.
  • Squatter: people who squat down low onto their bicycles so that there’s little contact between the ground and the tires which causes them to move faster.
  • Throwing Bombs: this term is used in BMX racing for landing and blowing a tire.
  • Wood-Pusher: someone in BMX racing that wants to do tricks off of wood ramps which are usually not meant for use with bikes, but people still try anyways.

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