When to Shift
You want to shift to an easier gear on hills (climbs) or when you’re riding into the wind. Use a harder gear on flats or if the wind is blowing from behind (a tailwind). When in doubt, shift before the terrain changes, especially on hills. Don’t wait until you can feel the incline kick in before you shift; shift gears in anticipation of the incline. When you shift, keep pedaling but ease up on the pedals, especially on hills—if you’re pushing hard or if you stop pedaling completely, the chain may skip or fall off.