On the road bike you ride through turns far much less than you ride in a straight line. Therefore we practice cornering much less, while good cornering is much harder than riding straight ahead :).
Especially in the corners, there’s a lot to gain.
Good cornering is also nice for your buddies in a group ride. If your cornering skills leave much to be desired, you lose a lot of speed, but also need to accelerate much more after the corner. Moreover, your drop of speed may sometimes be unexpected, and you scare your buddies behind you. If you ride through a corner nice and smoothly, you will please the ones behind you.
Cornering in a descent is also to be learned, either consciously or unconsciously.
To peddle or not to peddle?
Have a look when you’re out in a group ride how everybody takes a corner. Unwittingly, most let their speed drop a lot in front of an upcoming corner and stop peddling for too long. There is a better, faster and safer way! Try to learn how long you can keep pedaling.
How do I actually ride a turn on the road bike?
Do practice cornering. Find a car park or a course. And try it out. Which line do you choose? When do you brake and how hard? What is your posture? How long do you keep peddling? What angles can you ride? How do you actually steer? Where do you look? It’s fun to discover what you do and what you don’t do. And thereby your skills will increase.
You can tape a matchbox under the pedals. If you hit the ground, it will be less intense compared to when you do hit the ground with the pedal itself.
By the way, if you tap the pedal to the floor it’s usually without (much) harm. And after a few times you don’t get scared as badly :).
photo / video (to make yet)
Bike agility is very helping for cornering. An exercise in riding skills, for example, is setting your water bottle on the ground while riding, and pick it up again on the next pass.
To ride along a row of water bottles provides a great sense of cornering. These bottles, which you have obviously already put down while riding :), can be put increasingly closer together or further apart. This would provide a different way of improving your riding skills. Steering more from shoulder / bars in short turns and more from the hips / saddle in longer turns. Try it out.
See how this rider steers these short turns from his shoulders, the seat remains relatively in the same position, and even in the curve he pushes on the paddles to make extra speed.
Slaloming you can do easily during a ride. On a road or on a bike path with an interrupted center-line. Go slaloming around it. Vary the speed and length of the slalom, for instance take three bars per curve, two bars per curve, and so on. Notice how you make those curves. Do you steer by moving the bars or by shifting your weight? Do you steer with your hips or your shoulders (or both)? Do you move your weight in the forward/backward direction? Do you press your front wheel on the half of the curve? And then again do you move your weight backwards? Do you accelerate? Will there be rhythm in your movements in the successive corners? Move your hands. On the brake levers. Down the drops. Tight along the stem, as in the movie. Then you learn more and more to steer by shifting your weight.
In this longer turns the rider steers by shifting his weight from the hip / saddle.
You can practice this also on a city bike or mountain bike. If you practice on other bikes, you ‘ll notice these react differently when taking curves, and you’ll discover what you actually do. As a result, your cornering skills will improve.
See also the difference in unconscious and conscious learning: Learning
The foregoing is all about examining how you ride your curves and discover what works and what does not work. Of course, there are some tried and tested set of rules about the way you can corner best.