I LOVE Trials riding! The people who can do this are superheroes! WIRED has a great article on Trials riding. Well worth the time.
Motorcycles are dangerous, even when the rider is skilled and the bike is outfitted with modern safety features. So what happens when you ditch the paved roads for natural terrain and instead of simply avoiding the boulder in front you, you decide to ride up and over it? You have trials motorcycle riding, either the pinnacle of two-wheeled badassery or the dangerous product of gearheads with more ambition than brains.
The idea is simple: Strip a motorcycle of every part possible until it’s basically a mountain bike with a small motor, and take it up a massively treacherous hill. Speed isn’t the goal here, the way to win is to keep your feet off the ground and make it to the top. Since all riders have the same amount of power at their disposal, the game is about the exquisite use of throttle, braking, and clutch, along with weight shifting. A good run requires a near perfect performance from the rider.
“Trials is a big secret in America,” says Gary LaPlante, owner of Motoventures riding school and author of How to Ride Off-Road Motorcycles. It “represents an extreme faction of the sport.”
READ more at WIRED