Breakdance biking gives Terry Adams wings

Dan Ryan and Dan Ryan

Terry Adams is a professional flatland BMX rider. He competes in contests around the world and won an X Games Gold Medal in 2005. Recently, he has been touring college campuses, including Northwestern, around the country in partnership with Red Bull to promote the sport. He sat down to talk with The Daily about his trip.


DAILY: What is Flatland BMX exactly?

Adams: Flatland BMX is basically like break dancing on a bike. It’s a pretty artistic style of BMX. The other styles of BMX are more like jumping and rails and vert and dirt. Flatland is all on the flat ground, and it’s a bunch of spins. It’s a very intricate form of riding that’s pretty complex.

DAILY: What motivated you to get started with flatland?

Adams: The reason I chose flatland was basically, as a kid, it looked pretty crazy watching it on TV. It was pretty difficult for me to understand. And doing it for 17 years now and watching other riders, it’s a pretty complex sport. I do it for a living, and it’s hard for me to understand what’s going on. And that’s really what drew me to it.

DAILY: So you’ve been going to different college campuses essentially to promote the sport?

Adams: The college campus stuff is more or less, like, laidback. It’s no real demo. I’m kind of just like finding a spot that’s flat and riding, and if students want to come up and watch, they watch. If not, they just walk past. This is a Red Bull college tour, and this is Day, like, 50 right now. I started in Atlanta. I’ve probably hit, like, 120 campuses. It’s kind of been a whirlwind. Is it getting anyone into riding? Maybe not. But the students who walk up and have questions, it definitely educates them. A lot of the time they think I’m just a student.

DAILY: Is it hard to travel around and do this everyday?

Adams: I would say, for me to complain, I would have to be slapped in the face. It’s just riding a bike, and it was my dream as a kid to do this for a living. And now it’s happening, and I definitely don’t want to take any day for granted. It’s not hard at all. It’s what I love to do.

More information on Terry Adams can be found at or at his Twitter page @terryadamsbmx.

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