1. Your brakes need to work that’s a fact we all know. But how they work is the issue.
  2. When I was younger I saw a kid catch a beating from his dad because he was not riding fast enough but on further inspection the father found out that he had in fact left the brakes clamped onto the rear wheel and of course that was why the kid was not going fast but the damage had already been done. This is a perfect example of how bad brake management can ruin a race.
  3. The positioning of the brake lever on the bars must be comfortable for the rider and must not be to high that if the rider falls, they could break there hand or wrist.
  4. The inner cable should be lubricated sufficiently so it runs freely in the casing, and there should be no kinks in the cable because this will cause friction which will start unnecessary problems with the brakes.
  5. The brakes should be pretty easy to pull and the tension should be easy. With modern day technology the V-Brake has made breaking a lot easier.
  6. Break blocks should run parallel to the rim and should not touch the tire in any way or this may cause the tire to wear out faster. The break blokes should also be totally on the rim because if some of the break block is not being used then your breaking capacity is not at a maximum.
  7. When setting the width of the brake arms please insure it is as narrow as possible as you don’t want your shoe to get caught in the brakes which will cause you to fall unnecessarily.
  8. When finding the position for the brake spring a general norm is just to stick it in the middle of the three adjusting holes please just ensure there is enough tension for it to pull back off the rim.
  9. The brakes are on and it is time for the final settings, this is the most important part because you have to get the settings right for how you like them to feel. The norm is to have the brakes set so when pulling them the movement is as short as possible so that they respond immediately. If your rim is buckled then ease the brakes off so that the break blokes are not touching the rim and the wheel spins freely.

And remember always ride it like you stole it.