6 Tips On How To Bike Uphill Without Keeling Over At The Top

Riding a bike uphill is a challenge no matter if you’re a beginner or more experienced rider.

It burns like nothing else.

But it’s a killer workout. If you’re going at a leisurely pace, you’re using about 281 calories an hour for a 155-pound individual.

If you ramp it to a vigorous level, you’re talking about 704 calories.

Now that’s intense. And that’s exactly what uphill biking is. Let’s go over some tips to help you get up those hills.

1. Get a Head Start

You can give yourself a jump on it by pedaling faster while you’re on the flats to give you some momentum as you approach.

The extra speed will get you up the first part of it without taxing your body too much.

2. Maintain Proper Form

You need to keep two things in mind when ascending hills:

  • ​Aerodynamics
  • ​Power-to-Weight Ratio

​​Both concern your stance on the bike and its effects.

Try to stay in the saddle for less steep climbs of 10 degree slopes or less. Your position won’t add to the wind resistance that will make it harder. Any advantage you can use, do it.

This is one of those things.

It also keeps your center of gravity lower which can help you leverage the force of your muscles better. You should maintain a flat back and not hunch over the front of your bike. Bend your elbows for better aerodynamics.

10 Degree Slopes

3. Stand Up If You Must

That said, feel free to stand up if it’s a really steep climb but only if you have to do it.

The ride itself is hard, but doing it this way will tap into more energy stores. Then, the concern exists for bonking if you run out of fuel.

4. Keep Your Mind on the Task

Resist the temptation to keep looking ahead to see how close you are to the top. That will mess with your proper form.

Sure, it’s hard, but you might get distracted and forget to do things like breathing. A calm, steady breath is the order of the day.

5. Practice

Uphill Cycling Practice

Riding uphill isn’t something you can do easily without practicing.

It requires using muscles differently and blowing through a lot of fuel quickly. There is no shortcut to good cardiovascular fitness. It takes time and effort.

It’s especially important for beginners. Remember all those gears you have? Well, there’s only one way you’ll get comfortable switching them to maintain your pace on that climb.

6. Reconsider Your Ride

If you’re serious about biking, you might want to think about switching out your current steed for something that is better suited to intense training. You have a few options that include:

​​​The last one may seem counterintuitive, but trust us.

You’ll build some wicked muscle mass by making your workouts harder. And they will be with that kind of bike.


Learning how to bike uphill without getting tired is a daunting task no matter what your fitness level.

The key is leverage all of your advantages to optimize your energy use. That includes making exercise a priority.

About the Author Max Shumpert

Over the last few years, I’ve taken my love of the outdoors, hiking, skiing, trekking and exploring to the next level by starting this site. I started a bike shop in Denver, CO, and have seen amazing growth over the last few years. Getting paid to do what I love has been a dream come true for me. That’s also what led me to start BikesReviewed.com. In my shop, I spend a large amount of time helping people find the perfect bike for them and the style of biking they’re going to be doing. It only made sense that I expanded my reach and got online, making it possible for me to help people all over the world. If biking and staying fit is your priority, too, you’ve come to the right place.

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