So you think you’re a pretty good cyclist, do you? You’ve climbed how many hills without breaking a sweat? Completed how many tours? Sure, that’s impressive, but tell us this: can you ride this bike?
We bet you can’t. We’re almost certain you can’t, in fact.
This is the “backwards brain bicycle,” an unholy device that’s built to trip up even the most hardened, ride-tested cyclist on the planet. The steering on this ride is built in reverse: when you try to turn right, it turns left; when you try to turn left, it turns right. It’s a simple change, but you’d be amazed how much of a difference it actually makes. Naturally, intrepid cyclists will look at this inviting-looking cruiser and think it’s just a matter of alternating the two, treating a left turn like a right and so forth. Easy, right? Nope. That, as Destin of YouTube’s Smarter Every Day fame points out, is where almost everybody fails.
Don’t feel bad, though. This is what happens when laws of momentum, balance and basic physics conspire with a cyclist’s lifelong riding knowledge to flip that knowledge on its ear, and it’s pretty hilarious to watch. Even Col. Chris Hadfield—a trained military pilot and astronaut with a master’s degree in aviation, maybe nine of them—couldn’t stay up on the wobbly, confounding bike.
The science behind it is fascinating, but we’ll let Smarter Every Day do the teaching. Check it out: