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Old May 23rd, 2016, 04:34 AM   #1
ZeroGravity360
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fear of riding?

Sooooo! I was all confident to ride to and from work today. I told my mom i was going to do it, because why not? But the things my mom said to me really scared me and made me feel like I wasn't ready, even though I felt like i was. Does anyone have this problem? How do you get over it? granted I am 27, not a young person, but I feel as though my mom is so angry with me even getting a bike, she says anything to stop me from riding. She really scared me telling me I needed emergency contacts on my jacket so when I got into an accident they knew who to call...
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 04:57 AM   #2
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Ride when you feel confident. There are certainly days where people are off, whether it be from their mind being else where or other situations. It doesn't help you recognize your surroundings and help protect yourself if you aren't riding with your mind in it. I would just tell your mom it is something you want to do and if she can't give positive feed back towards your enjoyments then her comments are not welcome, and she is better off keeping them to her self.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 05:09 AM   #3
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That's just plain common sense. Why does asking you to carry emergency contacts scare you? I made a card with all my emergency info in it, even my blood type. It's in my jacket.

The perception of risk and the actual risk rarely line up. She's giving an emotional response that is likely based not on fact, but on her fear that her daughter might get hurt or killed. Which, you must admit, is a perfectly valid concern.

Her reaction is also likely based on a mental image of irresponsible motorcycle riders. Remember the incident in NYC a couple of years ago with a mob of motorcyclists getting into an altercation with a family in an SUV? That's the image people have of us, whether we're responsible riders or not. You don't remember the person on a Ninja 250 riding calmly along. You remember the squid who just dive-bombed you at 100 mph, swerving within two feet of your front fender.

Often, those who don't want to let you ride are more concerned about others hitting you than they are about you losing control. But life is full of such hazards that can injure or kill you. Get hit by a bus crossing the street and you don't have the benefit of a helmet, right?

Look at it this way: Does she let you ride a bicycle? I assume she insists you wear a helmet. Does she have a cow if you don't? If a car slams into you on a bicycle (even if you are wearing a helmet), you're likely to get hurt worse than if you go down on your bike wearing full gear. What in her view makes a motorcycle different?

You're an adult. It's your right to do as you please. But you should respect your elders and have an intelligent, reasoned conversation about the issue.

Knowledge goes a long way towards overcoming fear. How about asking her to follow you on the way to work one day, so she can actually see what it's like?
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 05:54 AM   #4
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I would recommend sitting down with your mom and having a talk with her. It seems she is scared that something could happen to you on the bike and is taking it out on you in an unhealthy way. Show her how you are being responsible by wearing gear and taking it slow as you are learning. Another way to show how serious you are about riding and maybe get rid of some of her fear is to take an MSF course and also pick up some books/videos on street riding techniques. Learn how to keep yourself out of harms way the best you can and hopefully she will back off. If not, then just let it go in one ear and out the other because you will always have someone telling you that riding is too dangerous and you will get killed.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:09 AM   #5
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I would recommend sitting down with your mom and having a talk with her. It seems she is scared that something could happen to you on the bike and is taking it out on you in an unhealthy way. Show her how you are being responsible by wearing gear and taking it slow as you are learning. Another way to show how serious you are about riding and maybe get rid of some of her fear is to take an MSF course and also pick up some books/videos on street riding techniques. Learn how to keep yourself out of harms way the best you can and hopefully she will back off. If not, then just let it go in one ear and out the other because you will always have someone telling you that riding is too dangerous and you will get killed.
Thank you, really. I don't understand why she is so fearful. She used to ride motorcycles when she was my age, but with out a helmet!! Yes people die in bike accidents, but I could also live my life in fear and only drive a car my whole life and die in a car accident. There was a horrible accident last night where a semi smashed into another semi but there was a car in between and demolished the car and killed the driver. My mom doesn't understand that by constantly saying things she shouldn't and trying to talk me out of doing things shes not letting me live my life, she got to! I want to too.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:19 AM   #6
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Back when I rode a CBR1100XX my license plate was my blood type, "A NEG" carrying your emergency contact information is a good idea. I also had a small laminated picture of my wife and kids on the instrument cluster of my bike. yeah it was fun to open the throttle and go fast, but every time I looked down at my speedometer I saw what was really important. Kept me grounded.

As for your mom, back when I started riding, my mom was a nurse, she worked in a Veterans Administration Kidney Dialysis unit. Everyone of her patients that got a kidney transplant the donor was a young male motorcycle rider who crashed (most not wearing helmets I believe). Her only experience with motorcycles was with those who died and donated organs to her patients. So she was more than slightly biased against motorcycles. Since I lived half way across the country it was pretty easy to just not tell her when I rode.

My mom is now in her 80's, she still doesn't like motorcycles, but she doesn't actively campaign against me riding them.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:38 AM   #7
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Back when I rode a CBR1100XX my license plate was my blood type, "A NEG" carrying your emergency contact information is a good idea. I also had a small laminated picture of my wife and kids on the instrument cluster of my bike. yeah it was fun to open the throttle and go fast, but every time I looked down at my speedometer I saw what was really important. Kept me grounded.

As for your mom, back when I started riding, my mom was a nurse, she worked in a Veterans Administration Kidney Dialysis unit. Everyone of her patients that got a kidney transplant the donor was a young male motorcycle rider who crashed (most not wearing helmets I believe). Her only experience with motorcycles was with those who died and donated organs to her patients. So she was more than slightly biased against motorcycles. Since I lived half way across the country it was pretty easy to just not tell her when I rode.

My mom is now in her 80's, she still doesn't like motorcycles, but she doesn't actively campaign against me riding them.
She knows plenty of bikers, I think that is why she is so scared, because many times they want to go fast, lose control and get seriously injured. I plan to take the MSF course at the end of next month (soonest I could get in) but I dont want to just not ride until then!
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:48 AM   #8
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She knows plenty of bikers, I think that is why she is so scared, because many times they want to go fast, lose control and get seriously injured. I plan to take the MSF course at the end of next month (soonest I could get in) but I dont want to just not ride until then!
I did not know you hadn't taken the MSF course yet.

Back when I started to ride (mid 1980's) there was no MSF course (well there was it just wasn't popular yet and wasn't required).

When my daughter wanted to learn to ride I signed her up for a course last summer, then I found our Harley Davidson did a free course for veterans and active duty military. So I signed up for one as well. I thought it would be a good way for me to know what she had been taught so I could reinforce the learning.

I have to say even with my years of riding and reading motorcycle magazine articles I learned a lot in the class. Especially low speed handling techniques.

I really suggest you slow down, crawl before you walk and wait for your commuting until after you take the class.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:51 AM   #9
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My mother sounds just like yours lol but it is because she saw my uncle stuck in a hospital bed and physical rehab from his motorcycle accident so I respect her concern for me and her opposition to me owning a bike.

Although I did get her to ride 2 up with me one day around the neighborhood (pretty sure that won her over). Just talk with her about it. She is entitled to her perspective and you to yours.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 07:11 AM   #10
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Help your Mom by calmly explaining how you are working on reducing the risks (wearing proper gear, never riding impaired, getting training, etc). Have her join you at the MSF class so she can see what they teach and how it helps you be a better rider. She rode, so she is focusing on the risks, but show her you acknowledge those risks by preparing for and mitigating them as much as you can.

Having emergency contacts on you is a good idea too. I wear a dogtag and an anklet with two phone numbers and a access code to a service with my medical history. Plus I am a member of a roadside service plan and two different emergency air transport plans. Planning for what happens after an accident has helped my Dad feel better about me riding far from home where I'm beyond his ability to help.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 07:18 AM   #11
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Wait till after your MSF before commuting, please?
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 07:18 AM   #12
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I have contact info set-up under ICE - In Case of Emergency in my (unlocked) phone.

If she listens to media statistics she would be scared. They keep saying how motorcycle deaths are increasing - which is true. BUT, there are many factors that they don't point out. Lack of a helmet is #1, but there are also time of day issues (bar time), speed, and drug or alcohol use involved. All preventable factors.

Tell her again that you wear all of the gear and ride responsibly. Feeling confident, and showing confidence, in your abilities will help both of you. Some type of rider course is always a good idea.

Years ago I was just leaving on a 2000 mi cycle trip when my wife turns to me and says - "I got a bad feeling about this..." Made it home fine. I never thought about it again.

You need to keep focused and not let others' doubts creep into your thoughts. The more you think about something bad happening the more likely it will happen (human mental process).
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 07:25 AM   #13
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Wait till after your MSF before commuting, please?
I just feel like my bike is going to waist, which in the end makes me feel worse. I bought it to be able to commute and in the long run save on gas. But I guess all of you are right. I can still take my weekend and after rush our adventures...
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 08:01 AM   #14
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I just feel like my bike is going to waist, which in the end makes me feel worse. I bought it to be able to commute and in the long run save on gas. But I guess all of you are right. I can still take my weekend and after rush our adventures...
You have many years of riding ahead of you. Keep it that way by getting properly training from folks who know, and get a good skill base for you to build from. No need to rush.

You may feel old but you are not. I did not get my first bike until I was 48, I am now 54 and looking forward to many more years of riding.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 08:04 AM   #15
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You have many years of riding ahead of you. Keep it that way by getting properly training from folks who know, and get a good skill base for you to build from. No need to rush.

You may feel old but you are not. I did not get my first bike until I was 48, I am now 54 and looking forward to many more years of riding.
Thank you, I do feel very old. Everyone I ride with started very young 18,19. and its just hard being the "rookie" at 27, let alone a girl. I just feel like the noob outcast some times and I really do want to get out there more and gain more respect from other riders, but I really dont see it happeneing any time soon.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 08:14 AM   #16
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After you get the MSF get a track day or two and some coaching and you will be better then the guys who have been riding for 10 years and not done a track day.

Careful, I hear doing track days is as addictive as crack.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 08:20 AM   #17
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Your mom will adjust with time. It's kind of her job to worry about you

Don't bother about what your friends think. Just ride at a speed you feel comfortable, concentrate on the road, and remember all the lessons you've read about handling turns, navigating traffic, etc etc.

If you have a friend with a dirt bike I think that's a great to prepare for the street. I was much more confident after a friend of mine took me dirt riding a few times. Let's you practice without all the street danger/pressure.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 10:13 AM   #18
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Yeah, I think most has been touched on but I'll bundle it all up for you.

1. Sounds like you are a biker, it is in your blood, your soul runs on two wheels, cages lean the wrong way when you corner. That is near on impossible to change. It's like willing your hair to be blond when you are a brunette. You can dye it, you can bleach it, but what keeps coming out of your head is brunette. Mom needs to understand that nagging and threatening won't change what you are. She sees only the danger, not how two wheels gives your soul wings.

2. Gear up, get the good stuff, get the stuff that fits your properly, and ATGATT. I want you to feel naked if you don't have your boots, gloves, helmet, CT Jacket, lumbar protection, etc on. Yes it's hot, yes it's some what constrictive... Yes you look wicked awesome wearing it.

3. MSF, learn the right way, from the right people, right from the start, and then practice. My dad said, " Practice make Permanent, not necessarily perfect." If you practice things perfectly over and over, then and only then, does practice make perfect. He said if you do something wrong, it takes 10 times doing it right to remove the "wrong" from your muscles and mind.

4. ride, just ride... there is no substitute for just putting miles under you. Unless you are doing something very wrong, learning how to shift with out even thinking, braking and down shifting, judging approach and corner entry speeds visually, lean angles, aggressive braking, head checks, signal use... all come with repetition. The more you do them, the more comfortable and able you will become.


so, take a hard look in the mirror, is your motorcycle part of your Internal Locus of Identity? When you see you, is it on two or 4 wheels? I ride a motorcycle, i'm forced to drive a car when it's raining, or snowing, or I have to carry more then my back pack will hold... but I ride a bike. Once that question is answered, convincing mom, over coming fear, spending the time to become competent/advanced/expert/elite is going to be time well spent in your mind. Oh and don't let the "girl" thing throw you, or anyone else for that matter. Mom sees "biker chick"... you young lady are a "scooter hottie"

ask me now I know all this... this is my daughter, and we have had this very same conversation.



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Old May 23rd, 2016, 10:31 AM   #19
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Thank you, all of you, for the encouraging words. I might get more practice under my belt before I start commuting. I will take the MSF course at the end of next month. It just kills me to see my bike sitting there when I leave for work in the morning.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 10:56 AM   #20
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Your mom will adjust with time. It's kind of her job to worry about you

Don't bother about what your friends think. Just ride at a speed you feel comfortable, concentrate on the road, and remember all the lessons you've read about handling turns, navigating traffic, etc etc.

If you have a friend with a dirt bike I think that's a great to prepare for the street. I was much more confident after a friend of mine took me dirt riding a few times. Let's you practice without all the street danger/pressure.
I was just about to add that.

Dirt bikes are great learning tools. Lots of constant corrections needed to keep things in-check and the consequences are less severe (most of the time) when you step over the line.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 11:01 AM   #21
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When I first got married and wanted to start riding, I did something that was, in hindsight, brilliant if I do say so myself.

I had my wife take the MSF course with me.

Why not do it with your mom? It's a fun way to spend the day and it'll help alleviate her fears because she'll see with her own eyes that not everyone is like the bikers she's known.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 11:11 AM   #22
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When I first got married and wanted to start riding, I did something that was, in hindsight, brilliant if I do say so myself.

I had my wife take the MSF course with me.

Why not do it with your mom? It's a fun way to spend the day and it'll help alleviate her fears because she'll see with her own eyes that not everyone is like the bikers she's known.
This is a REALLY good idea, I dont know if I can get her to go with me though. She lives an hour north of me right now. I know she doesnt live with me and cant see what I do, but shes still my mom! lol! Even at 27 I am still scared of my mom.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 11:11 AM   #23
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ask me now I know all this... this is my daughter, and we have had this very same conversation.



I've mentioned my daughters several times to ZG360 and realized she probably hasn't seen pictures. These have been posted before in older threads.









And a one son riding, the other son is taking his MSF BRC today and tomorrow.

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Old May 23rd, 2016, 11:15 AM   #24
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Both of you have beautiful daughters! I just wish more women rode! I am the only one I know that currently rides. The other one almost killed herself at the dragon a month ago!
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 01:32 PM   #25
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It's becoming much more acceptable for ladies to ride. Back when I got out of the Navy and got a real job, I parked next to a Vulcan 454 and wondered who the guy was that rode to work every day.

One day I met "him". Her name was Nancy and both she and her sister rode bikes. Her sister was on a GPz1000 and road the wheels off.

I'm telling you, in 10 - 15 years the MotoGP will be won by a woman. Rossi is like 5'4" and 135 lbm... It's hard to find guys that small...

My sister is 4' 11-1/2" and a buck 10 ... lot bigger pool to choose from when the ladies start to have the same amount of time and experience on the bikes.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 01:49 PM   #26
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You don't sound that confident about your riding skills if your mom can scare you enough not to ride by asking you to take a reasonable safety precaution.

Take the MSF, get confidence, and control over your bike. It's not going anywhere.

Ride safe!

Also Rossi is like 6'
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 01:56 PM   #27
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I'm telling you, in 10 - 15 years the MotoGP will be won by a woman. Rossi is like 5'4" and 135 lbm... It's hard to find guys that small...
I think that's more Pedrosa's size.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 01:59 PM   #28
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Both of you have beautiful daughters! I just wish more women rode! .....
Trying to do my part.

Got my wife to take a BRC about 20 years ago. She had a bit of a head cold and didn't think much of it, turned into an inner ear infection that really affected her balance. She kept dropping the bike and gave up. She has no desire to try to learn again.

Oldest daughter just has no desire to ride, not her thing. She doesn't even want to ride on the back. (must have traumatized her as a child) She did ride dirt bikes a bit when she was little. She's just not the adventuresome type.

The youngest one, if I had any hair left it would all be gray. Teaching your child to ride is a ton of fun, but on the street it is very nerve racking. I at least really feel a responsibility for their safety and anything that happens to them. If I am riding in the lead I spend more time looking in my mirror than looking ahead. I do really like the Sena Bluetooth headsets for keeping in contact as we ride.

And I'm about to go through it all over again with the 3rd kid starting on a motorcycle.

The parent part of me can see why your mom doesn't want you riding. As a parent we want to protect our children from any harm. I also think we parents tend to be more protective of our daughters than our sons.

The rider part of me takes over and I know I can't protect them from all harm, but I can at least make sure they are as trained and prepared as they can be.

Anyhow, long ramble, but female ridership is going up. Keep riding safe and you will attract more women to riding.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 02:42 PM   #29
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As someone who had the state police come to our door at 10 oclock at night,after wondering where my dad was all day(morgue)........emergency contacts are a smart idea to have on you. If you get spooked,sit that day out. Your mom cares is why she is saying the REAL things she is saying,and she isnt necassarily wrong in doing so. If you cant listen....accept....and move on,perhaps a little more group ride time is what you need,instead of solo.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 03:05 PM   #30
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Jumping into this thread a bit late but here's my 2 cents

It's perfectly natural for people who care about you to be worried as you begin riding, it is a very dangerous activity after all. My family had much stress about me riding when I first began and I can understand why. Deep down you can understand why as well but you chose to begin riding because you enjoy it, you chose to ride for yourself rather than for someone else.

As for your age, everyone is different and begins doing things at different points in their lives. To begin riding at your age has its advantages, one of the best ones being a mature approach to riding allowing personal safety to be of higher concern.

When it comes to emergency contacts, I always have an emergency contact card on me. The way I see it, if I end up in a situation where I am in critical condition I want those important to me to know about it.


other notes:
-you have plenty of time ahead of you to ride, don't worry about your bike wasting away until you have some training under your belt.
-Rossi is 5'11" fools, though he is 135lbs
-commuting bike only has its downsides so it's nice to drive every once in a while even when you have the bike
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 03:40 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by britx303 View Post
As someone who had the state police come to our door at 10 oclock at night,after wondering where my dad was all day(morgue)........emergency contacts are a smart idea to have on you. If you get spooked,sit that day out. Your mom cares is why she is saying the REAL things she is saying,and she isnt necassarily wrong in doing so. If you cant listen....accept....and move on,perhaps a little more group ride time is what you need,instead of solo.
My personal opinion is group rides are a bad idea for newbies. Trying to keep up pushes them into going faster than they should.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 03:50 PM   #32
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Group rides for n00bs are a good idea only if they are small groups organized by experienced, mature riders specifically for n00bs.
Parking lot practice (I still do that with over 40 years experience) and solo, quiet secondary roads are where best to learn if not at a track day or school. And study TOTW11 as well as other defensive riding resources before throwing yourself into the mele of commuter traffic. Your life depends on it and I'm not being dramatic. Especially if you regard yourself as clumsy and doubly so if you think you're a rock star.

Keep in mind: we old farts know a lot of dead riders. We had moments too but some luck and education kept us around.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 04:01 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by allanoue View Post
My personal opinion is group rides are a bad idea for newbies. Trying to keep up pushes them into going faster than they should.


Group rides often wind up being more about keeping the group together and rounding up lost sheep than actually riding. It's a distraction you don't need. Peer pressure, self consciousness, worries about losing your way... all of that.

Saddle time is where it's at. Get out there and ride when you have nothing else to worry about. Work up to the challenging stuff.

And get that course done! Study hard, pay attention, learn stuff, be safe.

Recommended reading: Any of David Hough's books, all of which are about safe street riding.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 04:05 PM   #34
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I agree with the group rides for newbies. Cruiser rides sure since those tend to be more laid back but not sport bike rides.

Though it is good to ride with 1-3 people who are willing to accommodate the beginner pace and make the newbie comfortable so that they can learn from the other rider's experience
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 04:45 PM   #35
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Sooooo! I was all confident to ride to and from work today. I told my mom i was going to do it, because why not? But the things my mom said to me really scared me and made me feel like I wasn't ready, even though I felt like i was..........I feel as though my mom is so angry with me even getting a bike, she says anything to stop me from riding.....
You are wrong, your mother is right.
You are extremely vulnerable at this point; only that you don't know all the things that can hurt you, really quick and really bad.

Please, please, read each of these links:

https://www.ninjette.org/forums/showthread.php?t=121405

https://www.ninjette.org/forums/showthread.php?t=205589

https://www.ninjette.org/forums/showthread.php?t=158739

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_o...he_Hurt_Report

Now, you are your biggest danger because you are over-confident.
Only education, time and persistent practice will make you more conscious of the actual dangers and a safer rider.
Enthusiastic commuting and group rides seldom achieve that, the common bad result is learning bad habits that will need to be unlearned later on.

During the first months of riding, the newbie is the greatest danger to himself.
She/he is developing skills that are non-natural, and that takes time, more for some, less for others.
After the rider learns the basic skills, immediately becomes overconfident, speeds up and lowers the guard.

It always takes a dangerous or complicated situation to trigger one or more survival reactions and to make that rider wake up to the realm that her/his basic skills are less than enough to survive in traffic, and that the need for education continues.

It is safer if that unavoidable complicated situation happens to that newbie in the best possible environment.

There is a time for everything in life, and learning to ride motorcycles in adverse conditions (heavy traffic, night, rain, fog) is no exception; only that the time for that is not while the rider is learning to become one with her/his machine.

"The rider is the wild card, the unpredictable and variable component in the package. And his problem is with the SRs that are triggered, nothing else." - Keith Code


(SRs: Survival reactions that are natural but are contrary to the basic principles of riding a motorcycle well.)

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Old May 23rd, 2016, 06:39 PM   #36
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My personal opinion is group rides are a bad idea for newbies. Trying to keep up pushes them into going faster than they should.
Then she also doesnt need to ride with motogp wannabes.Keep the group to a smaller number,with people that will respect each other as fellow riders,even newer riders. If they cannot handle that,then they are people she doesnt need to ride with anyway.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 08:15 PM   #37
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As a newer rider, I remember well the hesitation about commuting. You are right to be respectful of it. Commuter traffic moves faster and more erratically than weekend traffic. If it's possible, take the MSF course before you start to commute. One month seems like a lot, but it will fly by so quickly.
I bought a book, Proficient Motorcycling which I find super helpful in becoming a more proficient and confident rider. It will cover much of what is in the MSF course, so buy a copy now. It does not supersede the MSF course, but it is invaluable. All motorcyclists should own a copy. Seriously.
If it's possible, you could get a taste of commuter time traffic by riding your moto immediately after getting home and venturing forth nearby where there is still some traffic. That way you will have the option of turning back if it freaks you out too much. That is what I did. It really helped me to understand my skill level and emphasized how much more experience I needed.
Your mom will probably always try to talk you out of riding. My mother does, but with the knowledge I have from MSF, I can talk to her about statistics. More motorcyclists who haven't taken the course and who are new riders tend to have accidents than those who have taken MSF for example. I know I'll never convince her, but being able to recite the stats and how I am always ATGATT and did take the course, have helped to keep those conversations to a minimum. In the end, be prepared to ride without anyone's approval but other riders and the admiring looks of other people when they see you arrive in your gear and on your moto. It really is something special that many dream of, but fewer actually accomplish.
Be safe. You're still young and have so many years of riding to come.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 08:59 PM   #38
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Yeah, I think most has been touched on but I'll bundle it all up for you.

1. Sounds like you are a biker, it is in your blood, your soul runs on two wheels, cages lean the wrong way when you corner. That is near on impossible to change. It's like willing your hair to be blond when you are a brunette. You can dye it, you can bleach it, but what keeps coming out of your head is brunette. Mom needs to understand that nagging and threatening won't change what you are. She sees only the danger, not how two wheels gives your soul wings.

2. Gear up, get the good stuff, get the stuff that fits your properly, and ATGATT. I want you to feel naked if you don't have your boots, gloves, helmet, CT Jacket, lumbar protection, etc on. Yes it's hot, yes it's some what constrictive... Yes you look wicked awesome wearing it.

3. MSF, learn the right way, from the right people, right from the start, and then practice. My dad said, " Practice make Permanent, not necessarily perfect." If you practice things perfectly over and over, then and only then, does practice make perfect. He said if you do something wrong, it takes 10 times doing it right to remove the "wrong" from your muscles and mind.

4. ride, just ride... there is no substitute for just putting miles under you. Unless you are doing something very wrong, learning how to shift with out even thinking, braking and down shifting, judging approach and corner entry speeds visually, lean angles, aggressive braking, head checks, signal use... all come with repetition. The more you do them, the more comfortable and able you will become.


so, take a hard look in the mirror, is your motorcycle part of your Internal Locus of Identity? When you see you, is it on two or 4 wheels? I ride a motorcycle, i'm forced to drive a car when it's raining, or snowing, or I have to carry more then my back pack will hold... but I ride a bike. Once that question is answered, convincing mom, over coming fear, spending the time to become competent/advanced/expert/elite is going to be time well spent in your mind. Oh and don't let the "girl" thing throw you, or anyone else for that matter. Mom sees "biker chick"... you young lady are a "scooter hottie"
Just wanted to say these are some beautiful words.

Zero, I really get how you feel about seeing your bike "go to waste" though. It's just an emotional thing, but when I was first starting to ride and couldn't really manage it at all, just wobbling around my street at 15mph, I didn't have the confidence to practice more than once a week. I felt like I was a failure somehow every time I looked at my bike. Like I had this beautiful creation just sitting there more or less untouched, when she could have been being loved by someone who could ride.

But everyone has to start somewhere. And I got to the point where I'm riding her every day when I can. Even then, I feel a pang of remorse when I look at her and I have to take the car, whether it's because I need to carry something heavy or go on the freeway or, like today, when I had to go and pick up the bolt I needed to ride her safely again. There's something about driving that feels wrong now, even though I loved to do it before. I just want to spend all my time with her. But I know it's best for both of us if I take it slow and only do what I can manage.

On the MSF - I will say both that it taught me a lot and that everyone should try it once, and that it's not for everyone. I took it twice, first time we had to quit because my friend suffered severe heatstroke, second time I just got overwhelmed by the pace and started zoning out, and decided to tap out before I got myself in an accident. I don't learn well in group settings or with just verbal instructions, and the pace that I was expected to understand things at was way too fast. Plus the instructors were kind of assholes tbh. It definitely took me from "can't start the bike" to "can ride a little", but I still felt I was missing something.

I took a private course with Dom Schreiber at expertmotorcycletraining.com (not an ad, I swear!) This guy is amazing. He's a motorcycle cop who is patient and a great teacher and really got me confident doing low speed stuff. If you're anywhere in his vicinity, I can't recommend him enough. The MSF expects you to do low speed stuff but doesn't teach how in my opinion. Dom taught me how to actually do it on a more-than-150cc bike.
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Old May 23rd, 2016, 11:38 PM   #39
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By getting on the bike, you are assuming the risk.

If you don't feel like assuming the risk, don't get on the bike.

Our modern society in the west is very 'hand holding' and 'coddling' -- yet motorcycles will continue to the be exception, not the rule.

Recently a very close friend of mine -- aged 60+, who has been riding bikes his entire life since age eight -- crashed a dirtbike while fooling around on his own private property. Long story short, four broken vertebrae in the neck and he's lucky to be walking. Could have easily been paralyzed from the neck down instead, at which point his life would be over.

If you don't feel like assuming the risk, don't get on the bike.

The person I mentioned.. still has no recollection of what happened and never will. He remembers putting on his helmet and starting the bike as he has done a thousand times before, but the rest of what unfolded is a giant question mark in his brain.

Dangit, why are we thinking about this again. It's the same repetitive mental thought loop and if you don't break the cycle, it will become a self fulfilling prophecy.

Think happy thoughts!
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Old May 24th, 2016, 12:43 AM   #40
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I didn't read the whole thread but explain to your mom that although you appreciate and understand her concern for your well-being, you're extremely disappointed with how she's not respecting your choices as an adult and can't understand that this is what makes you happy.
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