How to become a confident & competent rider?

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Primalcarl
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How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by Primalcarl » Apr 14th, '19, 20:02

How did everyone here develop their skills and confidence to become a good rider?

It's much easier to make mistakes on 2 wheels and the consequences are expensive and potentially painful!

Need to stop riding like my gran!

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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by billinom8s » Apr 14th, '19, 20:45

started at 16, worked dmy way up the cc chart, rode Rd350LCs. Rode lots of shoite bikes.

Then i started to follow dynamight on rideouts, taught me to relax and not use my brakes as much. For me, getting better and smoother was more about time in the saddle rather than looking for the magic setting or bike. I'm comfortable doing what i do, sometimes push the envelope but am never in a hurry to get anywhere(or taste hospital food)
For me it's a case of knowing that there will always be someone faster and someone slower - fact. Just enjoy riding and spend time in the saddle, there's no substitute for time served and experience.
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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by menzies3032 » Apr 14th, '19, 21:02

got my L plates at 16 on a Suzuki TS50x at 17 went into a Honda MTX125 which I passed my test on. Then left bikes until 2010 when I got a K1 600. Having been a total lune on the 125 I knew straight away training was needed. Also the words of my dad stuck in my mind “your older now and you won’t bounce if you fall off”

Got twist of the wrist II and read it multiple times
Found as many You Tube clips of California Superbikes School as I could find and mixed it with the learning from the book which is the same methodology. My mantra then became to always “keep the bike stable.”

Attended the Police Bike Safe day and watched all of there supporting videos.

Then got into the YouTube channel and web site life at lean and still watch it to this day.

Then got on track and got into the whole track day thing and got teachings from better riders (ie Gee46) and also attended British SuperBike School for further instruction.

Soon to be getting further tuition from the owner of Smallboys Track Bikes who is an accomplished racer and and Ex No Limits instructor.
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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by julesh » Apr 14th, '19, 21:03

I do a lot of cycling, that helped me immensely when I started riding motorcycles, ie - I was aware what utter knobs there are out there driving around and knew how to ride defensively, time in the seat and trackdays where you can explore your potential in a safe, friendly and helpful environment is also a great help

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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by Jug_Inspector » Apr 14th, '19, 21:53

Following more experienced and better riders is a good way as you'll pick up their lines and "flow".

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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by ptolemyx » Apr 15th, '19, 07:56

Define a "good rider"??????

I have confidence in knowing my incompetence :mrgreen:

And there's nothing wrong in riding like your gran, much better than pushing beyond your personal comfort levels.
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Jug_Inspector
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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by Jug_Inspector » Apr 15th, '19, 09:19

Yup, confidence isn't always accompanied by competence, I have far more of one than the other, and I try to remember that.

But seriously, how do you get better at anything???
In this instance you are defining better as faster... well you do it by pushing yourself... there's no other way to do, that I'm aware off.

Question is how to do it as safely as possible. Training would be good start I guess.

Have you been on any forum rides?

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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by royb » Apr 15th, '19, 12:17

The machine must be in good order and it goes without saying so must you.
Confidence is acquired over time, riding on many different journeys.

Learn how to ride really slow so you can control your machine in traffic.
Do not follow racing lines on the road.

Do the advanced bikers course; really invaluable.

Although the biking sensation is fabulous,just remember you are vulnerable and not in a tin box (car). We will all end up in a wooden box (think on and try not to hasten it).

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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by Scotty » Apr 15th, '19, 12:55

An old proverb worth remembering: You get old riders, and you get bold riders, but very rarely do you get old, bold riders....

The roads are a bit of a jungle (metaphorically, with less vegetation, obviously), they're often congested, and full of drivers who are inattentive, stupid, careless or just plain aggressive. There are topographical hazards in addition to those presented by other vehicles; corners, hidden hazards, walls, drain covers, agricultural debris (mud or bovine excrement) and so on... Do you necessarily need to ride at a millionty to get somewhere 30 seconds earlier? Nothing is worth risking your life for. Of course there'll always be quicker and slower riders, but the quicker ones are often older and wiser (see proverb above), some people are more naturally talented than others, some are better learners.

The OP has been a member for nearly three years, so is probably not a newbie. If you're still dissatisfied with your riding, why not consider some more training. There should be enough training schools around who'll do more than cram learners to pass the test, somebody will offer more advanced training. It's generally about having confidence in your ability to do what's needed, if you've never been taught how to do it properly and you haven't managed to pick it up and learn by yourself, then get some tuition. It could help you to get more from your riding, and could help keep you alive.
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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by motorbike_tom » Apr 16th, '19, 08:08

One of the best things I heard when I was a new rider was "you start with two bags when riding. An empty bag of skill and a full bag of luck. Try to fill one up before the other empties"

Personally, I know I'm not a fantastic rider and a crash or two has made me more reserved about road riding which is no bad thing as looking back I was a cock at times. However I now ride everything from off-road, to touring, to track and commuting and I find the more you ride... the better you get! As long as you are prepared to constantly change and evolve what you are doing.

Take a look at bike safe, IAM, or SAM (somerset advanced motorcyclists) for advanced riding techniques if you want to progress your skills.

Plus riding like your Gran could be a misnomer for being slow. For all we know she could be an ex TT riding legend :wink:
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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by Bullet » Apr 16th, '19, 21:10

I just get on the bike and enjoy it

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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by TLS-Moose » Apr 16th, '19, 21:21

^^^ What Bullet says. I think we can all be prone to overthink these things.

On little tip I've seen said a few times is to find a (quiet) twisty but flowing stretch of road you know pretty well and ride it at a speed where you know you will not have to touch the brakes throughout the stretch. Then go back and repeat. Once you've got it nailed without having to touch the brakes, up the pace a little (5mph?) and keep your hands away from the brakes. Keep repeating. Then go find another stretch.
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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by ptolemyx » Apr 17th, '19, 06:27

How to become a confused and incontinent rider?

Now I have the answer to that :mrgreen:
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Re: How to become a confident & competent rider?

Post by MikeZ » Apr 17th, '19, 19:27

I started at 16 so that's 40years next year of riding nearly every day (within reason). I would say as per Moose.
My only advice would be, look and see everything but do not concentrate on small spot because you will not see what's coming next (nor from the side), then you can feel relaxed with your surroundings.
Ride at your speed, too slow or too fast is a recipe for stupid mistakes.
I've only been doing trackdays for 6 years but it has improved my road riding because it reduces need for speed on road, but actually makes you quicker and smoother.
Take all advice but ignore the stuff you think is crap.
Practice, practice, practice.

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