Is Mountain Biking More Dangerous Than Road Biking? – GoMTBiking

Published by Praful N on

Mountain biking and road biking are normally considered as extreme sports! But which is more dangerous? 

So, Is mountain biking more dangerous than road biking? No, mountain biking is less dangerous compared to road biking. Sources say that injuries and deaths are found more in the case of road biking compared to mountain biking because of unexpected obstacles like vehicles and pedestrians. Mountain biking can also be super dangerous if you are not aware of the skills.

I decided to glance at how common the injuries are in both sports in this article and make sure you start your mountain biking journey with confidence.

Let’s dive in

How dangerous is road biking compared to mountain biking?

As I said road biking is more dangerous compared to mountain biking because of the deaths caused.

But, mountain biking injuries can be very similar if you’re not on the right path.

Unfortunately, making mistakes while riding in both streams is so common.

Falling apart is one of the common mistakes found and can easily be corrected by practicing for the long term.

But some major risks have caused so many injuries that are:

  • Fracture in hand or wrist
  • Fractured shoulder
  • Trauma to the face
  • Head trauma
  • Fractured forearm

Source: Is Mountain Biking Dangerous?

The major risks for both of them are different for each of them. Let’s check them out.

Risks involved in Road biking making it more dangerous

The biggest risk of road biking is all about other users on the road. There are some tiny risks involved in road biking, but the major ones are the users opposite to us.

  • Motorists 
  • Pedestrians 
  • Potholes 

Injuries because of Motorists in road biking

It’s so common during road biking to have a faceoff with the people driving cars or motorcycles.

These faceoffs can be deadly for you causing severe injuries which sometimes leads to DEATH.

But, going at the right speed and path on a road full of cars and motorcycles can highly reduce the risk of major accidents.

So, NEVER ride your bike too close to a car. Sometimes, he might suddenly open his and you might get hit.

Injuries because of Pedestrians in road biking

This problem can be risky sometimes when there is a huge number of people walking on the footpath.

So go on the right path while riding a bike on the road. This problem doesn’t sound risky, but always expect unexpected scenes from pedestrians.

 Injuries because of Potholes

Potholes on the road can make you difficult to ride on

Sometimes the road is not that good for you. A can small pothole on the road can make you fall off the bike and hit you with multiple injuries that can be dangerous.

So whenever you ride a bike, check for potholes and ride slowly on those tiny dents.

Risks involved in mountain biking

As I said, both the major risks involved are different from each other.

Mountain biking major risks have everything to do with nature. Yeah, that’s right, trees and debris.

But sometimes, you might also face some collisions with other bikers and hikers on your path.

  • Trees and debris
  • Hikers
  • Other bikers

Trees and debris can be a major obstacle

Sometimes riding downhill or uphill, you might lose control of your bike and get with a tree.

This can hurt you a lot because both the movements involve high speed and pace.

So NEVER ride fast when you see some distraction from a huge tree on your path.


Similar to pedestrians in road biking, hikers can be an unexpected problem in your way.

Yes, you can hit the brake. But sometimes you’re fast downhill or uphill which can be uncontrollable for you to hit the brake.

So the chances are, you collide with a hiker, and both of them are injured.

As I said, always expect unexpected scenes from a hiker.

Other riders being the obstacle in mountain biking

Sometimes when you’re not solo biking. Chances are you can hit the other biker on the road.

So keep a slow pace when you’re not riding solo.

How to avoid major mountain biking injuries?

Being a mountain biker myself, here are some of my best tips for you to follow as a mountain biker.

And yes these tips are also applicable for a road biker.

Riding safe can lessen the number of injuries in mountain biking

This tip can seem common for you. But, this is the most important tip to be considered while riding a mountain bike.

As I have mentioned many of the risks above, everything is related to your riding style, pace, and speed.

If you’re a professional, you know how it works. But for the complete beginners riding at a slow pace in your initial journey of mountain biking can help you be on a safer side.

Gear up your mountain bike to lessen the injuries

If your bike has a problem with any of the parts for example brake or tire.

Then as a mountain biker, you’ll have difficulty too.

  • Check the functioning of your brakes before you start a ride.
  • Check whether you’re bike tires are suitably inflated
  • Check whether you’re bike frame has no cracks before riding
  • Check the bolts of your mountain bike

If you’re conscious about all the parts of the bike mentioned above. Then you’re set to go.

Safety gear up for yourself


Wearing and not wearing a helmet during your ride can make a lot of difference in preventing injuries.

Wearing a helmet is said to decrease severe injuries by up to 39%. That’s great, you’re more likely to have fewer injuries if you wear a helmet.

But don’t forget to wear other safety equipment which are can make your ride safer.

You’ll have to wear :

  • Mountain biking gloves
  • Biking pads
  • Knee pad and elbow pad
  • Shin guards
  • Biking shoes
  • Water bottle(very essential to fuel up)

Make sure, you’re ready with all the safety gear before you start a ride.

Get a good quality mountain bike

A good quality mountain bike

Having a good quality mountain bike can save you from many of the dangers while riding an MTB.

There is no problem with professional bikers as they have many years of experience riding an MTB.

The main problem is associated with beginners. Beginner bikers usually go for cheap MTB’s, which are not worth it.

Some of them are good, but you might have a difficulty in choosing them. So always go for good quality mountain bikes in your budget.

Pay attention while riding MTBs

Never get distracted when you’re on a ride, NEVER EVER.

In my experience, I have injured myself so many times just by getting distracted and not paying attention to the path.

So always be focused on your path. As I have mentioned some of the risk factors involving in this, you need to be good at being focused.

Adjust your mountain bike for your style

Whatever terrain you’re riding on. Adjust your brake levers and handlebars according to your ride.

This simple adjustment can decrease your chances of getting a tennis elbow injury.

Accept the risks of mountain biking

If you’re a beginner and you’re just getting into mountain biking. Just learn to accept the risks.

Every sport has a risk. That doesn’t mean that you cannot play them.

Even if you follow all these tips mentioned above, you will have some chances of getting injured. It’s so common.

Learn skills from experts

Being a beginner you’ll be committing some mistakes in your initial stages.

So try to learn some skills and techniques from experienced bikers. This will give you an initial boost in your journey.

The Bottom line

Is mountain biking more dangerous than road biking? The answer is no. But it can be dangerous if you’re not paying attention to your skills.

Injuries and risks are there in every sport out there. But avoiding them is the most important thing.

If you’re a beginner follow all the tips mentioned above and enjoy your journey as a mountain biker.

If you enjoyed this article about mountain biking, share it with your friends and colleagues!

Related article: Is Mountain biking more dangerous than skiing? – GoMTBiking