Motorcycle riding technique: mistakes to avoid

August 7, 2019

While they represent only 2% of road traffic, motorized two-wheelers account for nearly half of seriously injured people and 22% of those killed, according to Road Safety. If the excessive speed and the‘blood alcohol levels are among the leading causes of death in France, other too frequent errors are responsible for these tragedies. Here are some tips to limit the risk of a motorcycle accident.

Motorcycle riding technique: mistakes to avoid

1 / Confuse road and circuit

On the handlebars of a sports motorcycle, the urge to play the accelerator can come quickly. Even if the chorus comes back in a loop in driving school, it is better to repeat it: the road is not a race track.

Thrill seekers can experience the adrenaline rush as much as they want on the track. The public road is shared with other users, motorists, but also pedestrians, cyclists, etc..

Sometimes rally competition reflexes come to the surface. A biker may want to to put the knee in a turn. Except that on the road, it risks nibble continuous line, which in itself represents an offense. More serious, it risks surprising the driver of the vehicle in front, or even hitting him. !

For those who wish to release their impulses for speed and improve sporty driving, it is advisable to register for a motorcycle riding course to experience a real moment of pleasure in complete safety.

2 / Badly anticipating and negotiating turns

Negotiating a bend on a motorcycle can be learned when obtaining a motorcycle driver’s license, but also via motorcycle improvement courses. In young drivers, but also more experienced drivers, this error can be common. A bad anticipation of the curve, a hesitant maneuver, and it’s a cold sweat, even a crash !

First, make sure you have a good posture. Stay supported on your legs, keep your back straight, your hands on the handlebars without tensing too much to maintain the flexibility of your motorcycle and better handling. The gaze is also essential to take its trajectory. The mistake is to focus on the road.

On the contrary, it is necessary look away to the farthest exit point. The best way to safely approach a turn is to have the widest possible viewing angle.

In addition to technique, be aware of the environment. Match your speed to traffic. Then, as the instructors keep repeating during driving lessons, take a good look at the road surface..

White stripes, dents, potholes, oil puddles, wet leaves and chippings are real dangers for bikers.

3 / Give too much trust to other road users

Motorists tend to think of the road as theirs. Two-wheelers are too often ignored, on the highway as in town. The collision due to an unintentional denial of priority is a major cause of accidents.

Never assume that you have been seen, especially at an intersection or roundabout. To be seen, remember to turn on the low beam, put on your turn signal, etc..

It is also advisable to wear a showy outfit: a fluorescent motorcycle jacket or a suit with reflective stripes. Finally, respect the safety distances !

Not all riders think of spotting the motorcycle in their mirrors, or even checking the blind spot. Keep this in mind and anticipate the reaction of other road users as much as possible.

4 / Do stunt figures on an open road

Wheeling or burn, etc. tricks on the road are of course an infringement of the rules of the road on a motorcycle. But to indulge in two-wheel rodeo is also to put yourself in danger. On a closed track, a failed figure, provided you have good motorcycle equipment, exposes the rider to some bruises.

On the road, the risk of a serious collision is never far away. It is of course also a risk for others, for a car, but also for a pedestrian.

5 / being too tense

On braking

The brake use distribution on a motorcycle not equipped with ABS should generally be 70-80% on the front brake and 20-30% on the rear brake. When braking, the motorcycle or scooter has a natural tendency to dive forward: this is the mass transfer. The rear wheel loses grip and may even take off.

Unless there is emergency braking, be sure to adopt a smooth and smooth ride. Sudden braking can cause a skid. Be careful not to block the front wheel or the rear wheel, otherwise you expose yourself to a risk of falling even at low speed.

In a bend

Braking in a bend exposes the risk of slipping. Better to bow and counter-steer if you feel like you’re leaving, because when you tense up, any maneuver becomes impossible.

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