Riding a motorcycle can be an exhilarating experience, but let’s face it – we can all use some help to level up our skills and avoid becoming the next viral sensation on YouTube.
So, whether you’re an experienced rider or just starting out, we’ve compiled 15 helpful motorcycle riding tips and tricks that’ll keep you safe on the road. So, buckle up – or should we say, strap on your helmet – and let’s get started!
15 Motorcycle Riding Tips and Tricks
1. Master the basics: crawl before you wheelie
Sure, you want to be popping wheelies and doing stoppies like a pro, but first, let’s make sure you’ve got the basics down. Practice clutch control, throttle control, and braking until they become second nature. After all, you can’t build a stunt-riding career on a foundation of stalling and jerky gear changes.
2. Look where you want to go: the art of staring
Your mom always told you it’s impolite to stare, but when it comes to riding a motorcycle, staring is precisely what you need to do. Focus your eyes on the exit of a turn, and your bike will naturally follow. And if you happen to find yourself staring at a pothole, snap out of it and look where you actually want to go!
3. Maintain a safe following distance: no tailgating, please!
We get it, you’re eager to show off your shiny new bike, but resist the urge to tailgate the car in front of you. Instead, follow the two-second rule for a safe following distance. And no, drafting behind a semi-truck like you’re in a Fast & Furious movie is not a smart move.
4. Use both brakes: teamwork makes the dream work
When it comes to stopping, your front and rear brakes are like Batman and Robin – they work best as a team. Use both brakes when coming to a stop for smooth, efficient, and balanced braking. No one wants to be known as “that rider” who only uses the rear brake and skids through every intersection. Make sure you press both brake levers.
5. Be mindful of your body position: embrace your inner gymnast
Think of motorcycle riding as a graceful dance between you and your bike. Your body position plays a significant role in maintaining balance and control. So, channel your inner gymnast, grip the tank with your knees, and lean into turns like you’re on Dancing with the Stars.
6. Be visible: the brighter, the better
You might not want to look like a traffic cone, but wearing bright or reflective clothing will make you more visible to other motorists. And besides, who wouldn’t want to rock a neon yellow jacket and matching helmet? Fashion and safety – it’s a win-win.
7. Ride defensively: channel your inner psychic
Anticipate potential hazards and be prepared to react. Think of yourself as a motorcycle-riding psychic, always one step ahead of the cars, pedestrians, and obstacles around you. If you can see into the future (or at least pretend to), you’ll be better equipped to handle the surprises the road throws your way.
8. Maintain your motorcycle: treat your bike like your baby
Show your motorcycle some love by keeping it well-maintained. Regularly check your tire pressure, brakes, and lights to ensure optimal performance. After all, a happy bike is a reliable bike, and nobody wants to be stranded on the side of the road with a broken-down motorcycle and a bruised ego.
9. Dress for safety: slide into the right gear
We know you want to look cool riding your motorcycle, but your safety should come first. Wear appropriate gear like a helmet, gloves, riding jacket, pants, and boots – think of it as your superhero costume, complete with armor. Embrace the leather (or textile) and know that you’re not only looking stylish but also protecting yourself from road rash and other potential injuries.
10. Take a motorcycle safety course: embrace your inner student
No matter how many years you’ve been riding, there’s always room for improvement. Sign up for a motorcycle safety course to learn new techniques, sharpen your skills, and maybe even make new riding buddies. Plus, you might get a discount on your insurance for being a responsible rider – talk about a win-win situation!
11. Learn to counter-steer: defy physics like a boss
The concept of counter-steering might seem counterintuitive at first, but it’s a critical skill to master for smooth and controlled cornering. Gently push the handlebar in the direction you want to go, and watch in awe as your motorcycle leans and turns like magic. Congratulations, you’ve just defied the laws of physics!
12. Know when to call it a day: listen to your inner voice
If you’re feeling tired, stressed, or just not “in the zone,” it’s time to call it a day. Riding a motorcycle requires focus and concentration, and pushing yourself to ride when you’re not feeling up to it can be a recipe for disaster. Remember, there’s no shame in taking a break or postponing a ride – your motorcycle will always be there, waiting for you to hit the road again.
13. Keep your cool in traffic: channel your inner Zen master
Navigating through heavy traffic can be frustrating, but losing your cool won’t get you anywhere faster. Instead, take a deep breath, maintain a safe following distance, and remember that you’re on a motorcycle – you’re already cooler than 99% of the people stuck in their cars.
14. Develop your situational awareness: be the Sherlock Holmes of the road
While riding, constantly scan your surroundings and be aware of what’s happening around you. Like a detective piecing together clues, gather information from your mirrors, peripheral vision, and even the sounds of approaching vehicles. With your newfound powers of observation, you’ll be ready to react to any situation that comes your way.
15. Make friends with other riders: join the motorcycle brother/sisterhood
Connecting with fellow motorcyclists can make your riding experience more enjoyable and rewarding. Join local riding clubs, participate in group rides, or attend motorcycle events to share stories, exchange tips, and make lasting friendships. After all, what’s better than hitting the open road with a group of like-minded riders?
So there you have it – 15 motorcycle riding tips and tricks to help you become a better rider. By mastering these skills, you’ll be well on your way to becoming the best rider you can be. Remember, motorcycle riding is all about enjoying the freedom of the open road, so keep laughing, learning, and loving every mile. Happy riding!