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Old March 29th, 2021, 07:14 PM   #1
Misti
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If you can't ride....how do you keep those skills

Welp,

With Covid preventing me from travelling and coaching like I'm used too, it has also meant that I haven't ridden a sportbike in over a year (the longest I've ever gone)....anyone else in this situation?

How do you keep up your riding skills when you can't ride, or when you can't ride the bikes or the style you are used to?
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Old March 29th, 2021, 07:23 PM   #2
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I take the opportunity to ride the very rural and sometimes twisty roads around my area, which is the tobacco fields and woods of North Carolina. I'll also be at Deals Gap for a week in early May for the annual 2-stroke meet, now with masks and social distance.
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Old March 30th, 2021, 05:51 PM   #3
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@Misty,
Great question as always. I do lots of rerunning past track trips in my head and I play some video games. Both methods are not perfect but they keep the fundamentals fresh in your mind. These methods keep my mind focused on reference points for braking, turn in, brake release, roll on ECT. The only thing I can do for body position and the actual physical end of things is to go to the gym, stretch and strength train. I do have a walk in heated basement so I can go work/sit on my prodigy anytime but its just not the same as the front end lifting over a rise or the wind lasting past as I sit up to brake from 100+ MPH but I was stupid enough to live in New England. I used to ride MX all winter when possible but that stopped when an 11 year old boy on a KX80 broke his leg at our spot and the F%$#^ing parents sued the land owner! I am going in the morning to look at a new property which will allow me to ride dirt right from the garage, may have to start a "Rossi" type ranch and invite ya'all to come show what you can do in the dirt!
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Old March 31st, 2021, 07:08 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Misti View Post
Welp,

With Covid preventing me from travelling and coaching like I'm used too, it has also meant that I haven't ridden a sportbike in over a year (the longest I've ever gone)....anyone else in this situation?

How do you keep up your riding skills when you can't ride, or when you can't ride the bikes or the style you are used to?
I rode once last year, and it was only for about 75 miles (120 km). For the first time since I was an absolute newb, I'm nervous about getting on my bike. I've been doing core strengthening exercises, rewatching some of my old riding videos, and reminding myself of how many miles I've logged on that bike.
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Old May 3rd, 2021, 08:02 PM   #5
Misti
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@Misty,
Great question as always. I do lots of rerunning past track trips in my head and I play some video games. Both methods are not perfect but they keep the fundamentals fresh in your mind. These methods keep my mind focused on reference points for braking, turn in, brake release, roll on ECT. The only thing I can do for body position and the actual physical end of things is to go to the gym, stretch and strength train. I do have a walk in heated basement so I can go work/sit on my prodigy anytime but its just not the same as the front end lifting over a rise or the wind lasting past as I sit up to brake from 100+ MPH but I was stupid enough to live in New England. I used to ride MX all winter when possible but that stopped when an 11 year old boy on a KX80 broke his leg at our spot and the F%$#^ing parents sued the land owner! I am going in the morning to look at a new property which will allow me to ride dirt right from the garage, may have to start a "Rossi" type ranch and invite ya'all to come show what you can do in the dirt!
Nice. Good suggestions. I'm lucky in that we can ride dirt almost all through the winter so I picked up a KTM 200xcw and have just been riding trails and a bit of MX. I also find that riding mountain bikes and sometimes practicing certain visual skills while riding helps keep things a bit more sharp. But, boy do I miss it

What do you think is the first skill to go? Would it be the perception of speed or physical aspects like body position or emergency braking? I just try and take the opportunity to ride whatever I can, when I can! Even looking into hitting the go-kart track on a mini bike if I can't get on a big track soo.
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Old July 29th, 2021, 12:15 AM   #6
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How to keep your skills up is a tough one as there is no real substitute to riding
even if it's just to the grocery store , you use it or you loose it...its that simple
so don't wait for the opportunity to ride, look and find the opportunity to ride
there is a big difference there.
A year of absence from riding and you have to get the feel all over again
I know I just have done 2 years without riding and i"m like a newbee !
my balance is gone the judgement on when to brake is gone and if you throw in a different bike it just complicates it even more
so Ride... force yourself to ride even if it's only a short jaunt, at least once a week a 10 minute ride will keep the memory fresh it's far better than having to start at ground zero like me, 2 years is too long !
Bob.......
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Old August 16th, 2021, 08:28 AM   #7
Misti
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Originally Posted by Bob KellyIII View Post
How to keep your skills up is a tough one as there is no real substitute to riding
even if it's just to the grocery store , you use it or you loose it...its that simple
so don't wait for the opportunity to ride, look and find the opportunity to ride
there is a big difference there.
A year of absence from riding and you have to get the feel all over again
I know I just have done 2 years without riding and i"m like a newbee !
my balance is gone the judgement on when to brake is gone and if you throw in a different bike it just complicates it even more
so Ride... force yourself to ride even if it's only a short jaunt, at least once a week a 10 minute ride will keep the memory fresh it's far better than having to start at ground zero like me, 2 years is too long !
Bob.......
I feel like riding the dirt and trails and practicing as much as possible has helped a ton. I finally got out on a sportibke, a borrowed KTM 390 and had a blast- it wasn't too bad at all and I felt super comfortable and natural on the bike! Can't wait to get back to coaching!!! I have been doing a ton of riding clinics, learning enduro skills and keeping up with my visual skills in a different kind of environment (through trails instead of pavement) but every time I drive or ride anywhere I try and make sure I'm practicing something!

What are some of the things you keep going back to practicing while riding? What do you think is your most practiced skill?
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Old August 16th, 2021, 12:35 PM   #8
Bob KellyIII
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Most practiced skill ????
I'd have to say "braking" ...let me explain, I'm an ol' codger that learned you never touch the front brake when riding dirt.... and use it very sparingly on the street.... We know better Now days, so I am into practicing braking everywhere I go.... some day I hope it will become habit, but so fat the only habit that is there is hit the back brake. so I have a long way to go....
.... Next would be cornering judgement.... speed into the corner,lean angle and
how much braking and to what point before I release the brakes and roll on the throttle.... so far my practicing has been very conservative... in cornering
but at one time I could really rip through the corners.... not any more !
and I accept that.... I have to build up that skill again, or I will surely go off the high side... .
.... I think the most important skill you can have is how to stop your bike as fast as possible.... it's far more important than any other skill .....
but keep your eye on your rear view mirrors as the car behind you cannot stop near as fast......
I had a signal light change from yellow to red as I was approaching at the speed limit , I grabbed both binders and stopped the bike at the line
but the pickup truck behind me had to make a panic stop behind me... he came to a foot of hitting me... when he slid to a stop.... remember that !
you may not be as lucky.... I picked out my escape rout and was ready to execute it but a car came from the other direction and prevented it... so I watched him slide up to me... I did pull up a bit LOL..... if I hadn't he would have hit me.
......
the street is by far the most dangerous place for a bike rider to be. Car drivers do not see you, they pull out in front of you even with your lights on
.... they didn't expect to see a bike so they didn't see it.
I lost count of the times people have pulled out in front of me on a motorcycle... I usually just maneuver around them and go my way and they look so shocked to see me pass them... there is no need for Rude Gestures
or anything of the sort.... they well know what they did wrong.
if You get so Pissed off that your ready to fight when some one does that to you then you should not be riding a motorcycle...
Suck it Up Guys..it happens !
to Ride a motorcycle on the street is a exercise in defencive driving.
you will not be treated like your a car.... your a nuisance to car drivers....
and you don't want to piss someone off as he's driving a 2 tone object that can run over you....
Keep it friendly, keep it polite, be forgiving and you'll live longer !
.....
Bob.....
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Old October 12th, 2021, 06:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
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What are some of the things you keep going back to practicing while riding? What do you think is your most practiced skill?
I have to say it has been learning the lines of the track I'm at and body positioning. Mainly body positioning because I only have enough money and time to go to the track once every other month. I have been squeezing in go-kart tracks in the meantime, but big track day events help me learn my potentials at speed and using all my experiences I've gained at the kart tracks. I've been down for a while though because I stupidly high-sided a Grom and it did the works on me... Luckily I was fully geared up and I'm healing quickly
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Old October 25th, 2021, 06:57 AM   #10
Misti
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I have to say it has been learning the lines of the track I'm at and body positioning. Mainly body positioning because I only have enough money and time to go to the track once every other month. I have been squeezing in go-kart tracks in the meantime, but big track day events help me learn my potentials at speed and using all my experiences I've gained at the kart tracks. I've been down for a while though because I stupidly high-sided a Grom and it did the works on me... Luckily I was fully geared up and I'm healing quickly
Sometimes it's the little bikes that kick you off the hardest, lol. Glad you are healing up quickly.

Learning lines and body position are tricky skills to practice if you haven't been riding much. I like how you are squeezing in go-kart track riding and using that time to practice- all the skills translate and that kind of practice will help a ton! And I'm a big fan of using little bikes to practice skills whenever possible as well. What would you say are some effective ways of learning lines at a track? Do you have a method? What actually makes a good line around a race track anyway?

M
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Old January 9th, 2022, 09:57 AM   #11
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Sometimes it's the little bikes that kick you off the hardest, lol. Glad you are healing up quickly.

Learning lines and body position are tricky skills to practice if you haven't been riding much. I like how you are squeezing in go-kart track riding and using that time to practice- all the skills translate and that kind of practice will help a ton! And I'm a big fan of using little bikes to practice skills whenever possible as well. What would you say are some effective ways of learning lines at a track? Do you have a method? What actually makes a good line around a race track anyway?

M
Those are great questions! You know I have a hard time following the "race lines". You see, I'm not fast... so many people use many different lines around the track because they are on different types of bikes, or they are different levels of "fast" riders, and/or the traffic usually dictates how you are going to enter and exit a corner too. I started to focus on just "fun" riding lately. Working on getting comfortable riding around and using all the controls, while finding better ways to feel relaxed enough to play harder, if that makes any sense. I found that if I'm thinking about body positioning and all the other things that make a track rider "motogp" ready, than I'm overthinking and actually becoming slower and fatiguing faster.

I recently got back on the bike since my accident and it was pretty fun. I wasn't in the best shape either because in the last 3.5 months, I haven't exercised or been eating the best of foods. So the lack of taking care of myself really showed in my abilities on the track. I couldn't get my upper body to crouch in like I wanted and leaning into curves was a bit of a challenge because I kept feeling my chest protector dig into my arm pits. I realized being fit is necessary to properly ride at ones limits on a bike now
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Old February 13th, 2022, 08:32 PM   #12
Misti
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Those are great questions! You know I have a hard time following the "race lines". You see, I'm not fast... so many people use many different lines around the track because they are on different types of bikes, or they are different levels of "fast" riders, and/or the traffic usually dictates how you are going to enter and exit a corner too. I started to focus on just "fun" riding lately. Working on getting comfortable riding around and using all the controls, while finding better ways to feel relaxed enough to play harder, if that makes any sense. I found that if I'm thinking about body positioning and all the other things that make a track rider "motogp" ready, than I'm overthinking and actually becoming slower and fatiguing faster.

I recently got back on the bike since my accident and it was pretty fun. I wasn't in the best shape either because in the last 3.5 months, I haven't exercised or been eating the best of foods. So the lack of taking care of myself really showed in my abilities on the track. I couldn't get my upper body to crouch in like I wanted and leaning into curves was a bit of a challenge because I kept feeling my chest protector dig into my arm pits. I realized being fit is necessary to properly ride at ones limits on a bike now
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