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Thursday, June 13, 2024

Learning the Open Road: What New Motorcyclists Should Know

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The open road calls motorcyclists and invites them on freeing adventures. For those new to the lifestyle, open highways and unseen horizons are thrilling yet present challenges and responsibilities. Here’s what new motorcyclists should know to prepare for the incredible journey on two wheels.

Understanding Your Machine

The first and foremost lesson in motorcycling is getting to know your bike. Spend time understanding its mechanics, capabilities, and most importantly, its limitations. Whether you’re riding a sportbike, cruiser, or dual-sport, your motorcycle has unique characteristics and handling specifics.

Familiarize yourself with the owner’s manual and learn to check the oil, coolant, brake fluid, and tire pressure to save yourself from potential hazards and ensure a smooth ride.

Safety Gear as Your Armor

Your safety gear is a necessity. Helmets, gloves, riding jackets, boots, and armored pants can significantly reduce the risk of severe injuries should you get in an accident. When choosing your gear, prioritize quality and comfort over style. You’ll be happy to know that many options provide all three! In the event of an incident, your gear is your first line of protection. Don’t skimp on it!

The Art of Defensive Riding

Defensive riding is perhaps the most crucial skill a motorcyclist can develop. One part of motorcycle etiquette to keep in mind is to operate safely on the road. As a general rule of thumb, always assume you are invisible to other drivers, and keep a keen eye on the behavior of vehicles around you. Maintain a safe distance behind other drivers, double-check your blind spots before acting, and be especially cautious at intersections.

Joining a Community

The motorcycling community is vast and welcoming, with countless groups and forums online where people share experiences, advice, and friendships. Local clubs often organize rides, allowing new riders to gain experience while under the watchful eyes of veterans. Participating in these communities can provide invaluable insights, from the best local routes to advanced mechanical advice. Plus, the bonds forged with fellow riders are enduring and can lead to unforgettable adventures.

Planning Your Journeys

Planning is crucial before hitting the road. Check the weather, prepare your route, and ensure your motorcycle is in prime condition. It’s always a good idea to inform someone about your route and expected return. Packing essentials like water, snacks, a basic tool kit, and a first-aid kit can be a lifesaver.

See Your Journey Through to the End

Learning the open road as a new motorcyclist is an adventure that will broaden your horizons in unexpected ways. With the right approach to preparation, safety, and ongoing education, the world is yours to explore. Remember, the joy of motorcycling is as much about the journey as the destination.

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