With summer right around the corner there is no better time to refresh your motorcycle safety than now.
1. Ride according to your skills and ability:
Pretty straight forward on this one. While some roads may look easy enough, riders do require a lot of practice before they can take on challenging hair pin turns safely. So practice, practice, practice,.....and then some more practice.
2. Take a motorcycle safety course:
Just like when you learned to drive a car you took a drivers education course, so why should riding a motorcycle be any different. We may all think we know everything when it comes to riding our bikes, but I can guarantee you that you will learn something new and something that might save your life one day by taking a weekend to take a safety course led by instructors who more than likely have far more experience than you.
3. Get Ready to Roll:
Before each ride take time to walk around your bike and check to make sure your signals, horn, and lights are in working order. Additionally check the belt, chain, or shaft, the brakes, and your tire for wear and proper pressure.
4. Wear the right riding gear:
Although wearing riding gear is not the law and even in some states it is not required to wear a helmet,.... come on it is the smart thing to do if you value your life. This includes a helmet, boots, gloves, jackets with armor, and pants with armor. There is no reason you should skimp on these purchases as these will be what could save your life one day. As they say "WEAR ALL THE GEAR, ALL THE TIME." Pictured to the left is the gear I wear all the time regardless of how long or short the trip may be. The pants and jacket are well equipped with shoulder, elbow, back, knee, and hip protection. They are designed knowing that these areas are the most prone to impact or abrasion.
5. Ride defensively:
The gear you wear should provide you with protection from the elements, debris, and road rash. But it is always most important to be aware of other drivers as they may not see you even when you are sure they are staring right at you. I've had drivers pull out right in front of me while I was looking them dead in the eyes, so don't assume others see you when you think they do.
6. Look where you want to go and watch out for road hazards:
If you are staring at a rock in the road, more than likely you are going to hit that rock. Your eyes will lead you where you want to go so always be looking as far ahead as possible for road hazards or debris, and when cornering be sure to look through the corner where you want to go.
7. Stay in your comfort zone:
The only person who knows your strengths and riding skills best is you. Make sure that the route you select is not more than one you can handle. The more familiar you are with the route, the easier it will be for you to focus on the task at hand.
8. Ride in a good mood:
Make sure you are well rested, in a good mood, free of any stress, and are happy about getting out on the road. If you are upset or stressed with outside factors it will affect your ability to ride at your best. So be happy and enjoy yourself out there!
With summer fast approaching we are all looking forward to getting out on two wheels. Remember to be safe and that most motorists are not going to be aware of your presence. The only thing you can control are your actions and your ability to protect yourself. So be safe and have fun!!!