The Science of Balancing on a Bike

Picture 2013-09-04 at 4.40.06 PM

“Every time I show the film — whether it’s to film students at USC or UCLA or I’m going to a festival — that’s always the first question: How did Kermit ride the bicycle? And my stock answer is: I put him on a three-wheeler until he got his balance, and then I put him on the two-wheeler.”

— James Frawley, director of The Muppet Movie

There are a lot of companies that design bicycles, but actually little scientific understanding of how the parameters of a bike affect riding dynamics or a person’s (or muppet’s) ability to control the bike.

What makes one bicycle harder to control? How can we fine tune the vehicle to make it easier to balance?

Engineers at UC Davis are studying how we ride bikes in order to answer these questions.

Watch the video here

2 thoughts on “The Science of Balancing on a Bike

  1. Debbie faver

    When I ride I often adjust with my butt, like on my motorcycle. When I steer, I lean (camber thrust). Just helping if I can.

    Great idea and Best of Luck and regards.
    debbie

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