Jose Yanez, First Person To Back Flip A Bicycle And Motorcycle

jose janez woodward

jose yanez circus
In 1985, Jose Yanez came from completely outside the loop and invented the backflip on a bicycle, changing action sports forever. No one was but Jose was doing back flips back then. He performed his amazing trick in numerous BMX publications, BMX nationals and even the circus. Jose was also the stunt double Bill Allen in the classic BMX movie Rad where he did his back flip. Then in 1991 he invented the backflip on a motorcycle, flipping an 80cc motorcycle on a giant wooden box jump. The funny thing was Jose’ wasn’t your typical BMXer meaning he didn’t do really do BMX. Jose’ was so ahead of his time, he even did a ramp to ramp back flip on a skateboard in 1990 and he’s actually the reason box jumps were created:
jose yanez back flip

In 1991, Jose Yanez became the first person to backflip a motocross bike. Jose was the inventor of the backflip on a bicycle, and performed the flip as a stuntman in the movie RAD (1985). Even before inventing the backflip on a bicycle, Jose had envisioned doing a flip on a motorcycle- except he wanted to do a front flip. Jose was the top gymnast at Dysart High School in Arizona, and he started looking to flip on a motorcycle after having missed out on an opportunity at a free ride at Olympic Training Camp because his family had to move to Colorado for financial reasons. When his practice attempts to front flip a motorcycle met with miserable failure, Jose decided to learn a backflip on a BMX bike after being inspired by flatland BMX riders he watched while on vacation in Mission Beach, California. Jose Yanez first learned the backflip on a bicycle by jumping into the Salt River outside of Phoenix, then first attempted and pulled a ramp-to-ramp backflip in front of a breathless crowd at Chandler BMX in 1984.

Years later, Jose decided to learn the backflip on a motorcycle, and practiced for it by flipping his motorcycle into the Salt River, just as he had done with his BMX bike. He would kill the engine on his 80cc motorcycle just before he hit the water to prevent damage to the bike. Jose Yanez performed the world’s first ramp-to-ramp motocross backflip on an 80cc motorcycle in October, 1991 on an 8′ tall box jump he built himself in Pagosa Springs, Colorado. This flip was documented on video and will be featured in an upcoming documentary produced by Psychicflyingmonkey Productions on the life of Jose Yanez, which will be released late 2015. Jose’s next motocross backflip attempt, this time for The National Enquirer resulted in a crash that kept Jose off motorcycles and bicycles for two years due to an injured knee.

jose janez woodward
Find out more about BMX Legend Jose “DeCat” Yanez on
Double Back Flip into water 1987:

Documentary fundraiser video:

Back Flip into foam 2011


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