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Motorbike and Anxiety disorder?

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by Romie, Jan 18, 2009.

  1. Hello, before I worry about if im going to try and get my motorbike license, I just want to get peoples views on this. I suffer from a general anxiety disorder and the occasional panic attack. Im just wondering if its a bad idea to ride a bike with these conditions?

  2. It's fine. Go for your life and have a ball. :)

    Any day you feel overly anxious or likely to have a panic attack, you can either stay off the bike or carry a brown paper bag. :)
  3. do the practice days through h.a.r.t. or such or just the 2 days l's test. you'l see then whether its for you or not. never know till you try. good luck
  4. people ride and drive in all kinds of less than ideal states of mind, so i wouldnt discount you from riding.

    keep in mind you realise youre very vulnerable and rush hour traffic can be pretty stressful so you need to keep focus on what youre doing. if you have a panic attack i think you should pull over
  5. That might be something you could ask your GP, they would be able to give a more educated opinion than any of us :wink:

  6. You really should consult a specialist rather than this mob.
    Any advice other than see a medical/psychiatric specialist should be taken with a grain of salt.
  7. +1 for the above
  8. From my experience any advice from medical specialists should be taken with possibly even greater grain of salt... but yeah, it's hard to advise without knowing how severe your condition is. How do you go with driving - does that cause panic attacks for you? If it does, I think you can forget about riding, in traffic at least.
  9. Some things don't cause anxiety/panic attacks. If you feel ok riding a bike then ride.

    Mind you, a low level of general anxiety on the road is not necessarily a bad thing. It'll certainly keep you aware of what all the other road users are doing.
  10. You might find that with a few kms under your belt you become less anxious in general - not just on the bike. Choose your battles when starting out though.
  11. Depends how bad you have it. I think the only person who can answer the question is you. If you feel up to it then do it.

    You drive a car right? So its not that much more to ride a bike once you get used to it in my opinion.
  12. Its not to bad I guess, I do manage it without drugs. Somethings makes my heart explode while others dont. EG I can go clubbing where the clubs are packed, talk to random people just fine but if I enter a huge shopping centre or get a hair cut I feel like my heart is going to explode. When I use to drive, I didnt have any noticable anxiety issues.

    I just wanted to see if anyone has/is in a similar situation and rides. I guess best way is to go for my L's and see how it goes. I think id be fine by my self on the road although I think the L's test will definately cause some anxiety.
  13. You say generalized anxiety disorder, so you don't have any triggers to set it off? If you know the triggers you can sometimes work around the problem.
  14. I have the same condition and it poses no problems for my riding. I rarely have panic attacks (years apart) and stopped the meds many years ago, but I was still riding even when the condition was much worse. I have always ridden bikes and I think it helped to have that outlet for my energy (though I take a lot bigger risks if my head's in a muddle).

    Given that you can drive it shouldn't be a problem for you either. Just be aware of your moods and manage your riding behaviour accordingly. Ultimately, only you can decide if riding is safe for you. The condition is not a danger, it's how well you manage your moods and behaviour that will detirmine your safety. :)
  15. Regarding getting my motorbike licence the only trigger that I can think of is being in a social environment where I dont know anyone, this sometimes can trigger anxiety. So the L's test could be an issue unless I can keep my self calm.
  16. You'll be right, trust me :)
  17. This might not help any, but i always rememebered that the day I took up riding motorbikes, was the day that I suddenly gained a great confidence & ease about the world around me.
    From riding around on my parents property to racing MX & enduros as soon as I was old enough to pay my way & get myself out to those events, it seemed like a smooth transistion. There were alot of problems, issues & moments of danger in all of that, but looking back it was nothing but a thing.
    The bike riding put everything else into a different perspective.

    I still ride bikes 25 year later, for no apprant reason except it a great release & helps me sort my head out about what is worth thinking/worring about.
  18. I reckon as long as you can tell when its gonna happen and can pull over youll be fine.

    Pulling over doesnt take much time so you should be cool.

    I used to suffer from anxiety and if I could distract myself I could avoid a panic attack as strange as it seems. Focusing on riding might be something to distract you? just speed away from the traffic? :)
  19. It's the best medicine. Totally go for it. What - are you going to let GAD stop you from you living your life? No way, get out there.
  20. Its easier said than done though. A lot of the time, it is out of the persons control when a panic attack/anxiety will come on and it can be extremely debilitating.