We study the phenomenon of gyroscopic precession and the analogues of inertial forces within the framework of general relativity. Covariant connections between the two are established for circular orbits in stationary spacetimes with axial symmetry. Specializing to static spacetimes, we prove that gyroscopic precession and centrifugal force both reverse at the photon orbits. Simultaneous non-reversal of these in the case of stationary spacetimes is discussed. Further insight is gained in the case of static spacetime by considering the phenomena in a spacetime conformal to the original one. Gravi-electric and gravi-magnetic fields are studied and their relation to inertial forces is established.