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Over cautious?

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by slayertat, Sep 4, 2015.

  1. Hi Everyone,
    Long time lurker first time poster besides the welcome post.
    I grew up riding trail bikes then in my Late twenties I bought a scooter , it wasn't fast enough so I just went and bought a bigger bike, I never bothered about a license and after being done 3 times I just got rid of it.
    Now the crux of my problem is after the long ten or so years away I started to long for a bike again, but this time I did it properly, doing courses and also getting my License.
    When I rode before I had zero worries I would ride like the wind full of confidence(false) and never bothered with gear or anything (foolishly). Now I am geared to the max, Ive watched all theses videos of crashes (that fatal one too) and all things to avoid etc. I realised I was doing many things wrong and its a wonder I never died in the past
    But now It seems all my confidence has been eroded and I am just way safety conscious all the time. Constantly on the lookout for what can kill me and almost fearful when on the bike?
    Im not sure how this change came over me but one minute ill be starting to enjoy the ride again and my mind will start chastising me "get on the ball man, keep your mind on the job, watch for danger , watch for danger.
    I feel like im so focused now on not dieing im going to bring it upon myself.
    Has anyone ever gone through this type of thing before? my wife says it might be an age thing where perhaps I value my life a bit more now and im not prepared to take risks I once was?

  2. Age, responsibility and experience.
    • Agree Agree x 8
  3. Heya! Coincidentally, being extra alert and paranoid (ok maybe not that extreme) of safety probably saved my life today. This morning on my way to school I was doing 60 on the left lane. There were a lot of cars on the right lane and I was watching each one as I passed them. And wouldn't you know it, a probably impatient driver suddenly turned left into a small street (he did a left turn from the right lane) without signalling and most likely didn't check his mirrors as my bike came around 2 feet away from his rear side. I had to grab my brakes and managed to slow in time but if I was not paying attention for that split second, he would have taken me out
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. What TWEETTWEET said, age and wisdom but with time in the saddle it will become more and more enjoyable.
  5. Knowledge can be a dangerous thing. But can also save your butt.

    I would suggest that a bit more riding will see your roadcraft improving so that lots of the little checks "driver on a side street waiting to pull out.." will just become automatic and you can get back to enjoying riding.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  6. Your problem is that you are too outward focused not inward focused enough: What's after me? vs What am I doing? Not sure how to say it but you have to become content that you are doing what you can and that that is good enough, self empowerment or something. Reading a twist of the wrist 2 will probably help like that, take your mind off fear and onto technique to start with.
    • Agree Agree x 2
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  7. Nothing wrong with being over cautious....could save your life one day.
  8. I don't totally agree; it could but... It could also toss you off a cliff; Being overcautious can take attention away from riding properly which is the final and absolute goal. The OP seems wise being aware of this fact.
  9. ok spose there is that....:) me, I am cautious....but I am like that in everyday life...
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. If you read the web, watch youtube etc, they will give you the impression that you are lucky if you don't die every time you ride your bike.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  11. Coming back from a long break can be a dangerous time, staying cautious untill your back in the game properley is a wise move.
    Things are not as they were, I had a 20 year break myself.
  12. I reckon the worst thing I did was watch YouTube vids.. scared the shit outta me. It took a year or so and a lot of kms in the saddle to get the confidence I needed.

    Almost everything that could happen, probably will at some point on the road.
    People will try to be first at the lights.. so they will cut in front.. When there's a gap.. someone will jump into it (usually without looking or indicating).. People are in a rush to get to work (still trying to figure that one out) so they'll speed and make thoughtless moves.. people are also in a rush to get home.. so the same process applies.. If they see a cop, they'll go hard on the brakes.. red light camera ahead? be sure as the sunset they'll stop as soon as the light flicks to amber..

    Just give yourself a 3 second gap ..if someone jumps into that space.. just ease off the throttle till you have it back.. and buffer away from anything you deem to be a hazard. Filter if it's legal for you.. be weary of everyone if you're not. Don't hesitate to let people know that you're not happy with their actions (for example, if someone sits on my rear tyre at the lights I'll swing around, lift me visor.. point to the lack of space and do the "what up with that?!?" move and shake my head.. they usually look sheepish and back off at the next lights lol..)

    Have fun, find a mentor, take some courses.. love every moment :D
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  13. Do a training course. Somewhere off the road so you can focus on riding and get some confidence. I think not being confident on a bike is dangerous. Apart from that it just takes a while.
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  14. Instead of watching all these videos of motorcycle crashes, you should start watching more on motorcycle road craft :D The brain is a very lazy cognitive piece of junk. If you show it too much of one thing (i.e., motorcycle accidents) then it starts to think that they happen more than they statistically occur. That is called the 'availability heuristic', like when people watch too many shows of plane crashes - they start to believe they happen all the time or that flying isn't as safe as it actually is. So I think lots of exposure to things showing good motorcycling technique; teaching your brain that yes it is possible to be a safe rider and protect yourself. That might help to counteract your "over-cautiousness".

    Edit: not that being cautious is a bad thing, but if excessive cautiousness (or too much anxiety/arousal) impeded on performance, then my suggestion applies, is what I mean to say :)
    • Agree Agree x 2
  15. Cautious = good.

    Scared = bad

    Be aware of the risks, sure, but don't go out with the expectation of not making it home. Manage the risk and enjoy the ride.
    • Agree Agree x 6
  16. Hey another thing to remember you need to get used to your new ride and feel comfortable on it once that happens ( with time and kms ) you will be able to relax and start riding smoother and faster. Enjoy the ride!
  17. Just ride: keep your speed down, gear up, be aware of blind spots, don't ride unpredictability, expect people not to see you and think like a car driver.

    You honestly just start to accept everyone's out to kill you and develop a 6th sense to anticipate danger.
  18. Time in the saddle calmed my nerves.

    I went from having to psych myself up to go riding to actually just casually putting on my helmet and going for a cruise.

    I only really feel uneasy now when I get caught out in adverse conditions. ie. Strong winds with rain on the motorway with trucks flying past around you, but those conditions make me uneasy in my car lol.
  19. Congrats on getting a licence this time :)
    (many of us were YDaFoC at some point)
  20. :ROFLMAO:the acronym had me scratching my head for a bit, just got it :LOL:
    • Like Like x 1