Doing a Stoppie

MI2 Stoppie

Seen Ethan Hunt do it and kill the baddies at the same time in Mission Impossible 2? Well, here you'll learn how to get the rear end up first.

But before you try anything mentioned below, be informed that motorcycle stunts are very dangerous and illegal on public roads and car parks. If you really have to, then try it only if your home has a driveway as long as that of the Istana!

And of course, be prepared to pay for the repairs and injuries that will surely follow...
The owners of this website will not be responsible for any property damages, injuries or loss of life due to actions taken by readers after reading this page.

So you wanna do a stoppie? Actually, it's easy, if you know the secret.

And the secret is....

65 km/h stoppie = sliding the front end (front end skids)
15 km/h stoppie = easy trick. Apply the brake smoothly, not instantly!

That's what does the trick - simply trying it at 15-25 km/h. It's just because at 15 km/h, we have a lot more confidence. And it's much safer. Doing it slowly and smoothly are the most important, but there's more to it:

Try it at 15 km/h. Find an open parking lot and do a couple runs, more aggressive each time so you get comfortable with it.

You grab the front brake slowly at first and apply progressively more brake until the front end is fully loaded. On your practice runs (before you actually start doing stoppies), let go of the front brake before you stop completely - get used to keeping your balance after you release the front brake.

Loading the front forks is important, because it transfers the forces from the bike's weight onto the front before you bring the rear up. You can't just get a stoppie by instantly applying full front brake! That'll just slide the front (even at 15 km/h if you pull too fast).

Why? Without the bike's full weight on the front tire, the braking force will be greater than the tire's stopping power and it will start to slide. This is because stopping power (friction) is proportional to the force pushing the tire onto the ground (vertically). When the front end dives, the bike's full weight is holding the front tire onto the ground.

Keep going further with the brake lever each pass until the rear end comes up. Be ready to release your front brake as soon as you feel uncomfortable with how high the rear end is. It'll be a good idea to release the brake as soon as the rear tire got off the ground - better to get used to it in stages.

Don't use any rear brake and don't expect the rear brake to keep you from going over like it does with wheelies. In fact, if you apply the rear brake while the rear wheel is up in the air, it'll make it harder to balance when you come back down.

Balancing is pretty important to pull off the trick without embarassment. Usually, a fouled stoppie will simply make you put your foot down. If you are going straight when you do the stoppie, it'll be a lot easier. Even when going straight, you'll find the back end could come down as far as 30 cm (a foot) from where it'd be if it were straight.

Keep the bike in 1st gear, because you'll want to accelerate once you come down to stabilize the bike (and leave the spectators behind !).

A stoppie done right will have you in the air for a good 2-3 (or more) seconds, and landing firmly on the pegs - ready to go again! Landing a little crooked, but still perfectly balanced looks even cooler for some reason.

There are more subtle tricks like standing up on the pegs a little before braking to make it last longer, but I wouldn't try that for starters.

Have fun and ride safe always!