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Skills improvement this festive season

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by dima, Dec 26, 2012.

  1. Hi,

    So I have a spare week I can dedicate to motorcycling.
    Going for a ride is fun, but I want to spend this time more productively and work on improving my riding.

    What I want do do:

    - HART (obvious)
    - trials bikes (what skills can I learn from it?)
    - dirt bike (where can I do it? Want to know how it feels to slide)
    - gymkhana (how and where?)
    - some mentoring if possible
    - lots of practice...

    Any suggestions RE the list above?

    What are the other things to "boost" the riding skills?

  2. Practice what they teach you at the HART course would be a good start. Practice, practice, practice.
    Dirt bikes etc I'd just treat as fun and focus on one main course (the HART one).
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Pick one of those and master it would be my advice.
    A dirtbike will help and hurt a lot. Will help you get the sensation of balance when sliding...and hurt when you end the day and realize how out of shape you are.
    Trials.. I grew up on this shoite. Not for the beginner, but would help you out in every way. Trials is the pinnacle of technical riding.... and believe me falling down a rock face hurts a lot :)
    Can you say you are a master of the basics ?
    can you pull a bike up form 60kmp/h in 7meters..That's what's considered average for an advanced rider. It can be done in 5m.
    Turn your fig 8 into a clover leaf, and then do it one handed.
    If you can find a place to do it "jousting is great and safe for two bikes to race without having to avoid each other. Put two witches hats 50m apart and go hard. One either side...just like a treadly race.
    Set up a slalom 10m apart but 5m in width. And get good enough to take it in second.
    What I'm getting at are the basics are so important, and mastering them will make mastering the more scary faster side of riding easier
    • Like Like x 3
  4. bretto61 wow, some awesome, awesome suggestions!

    Now I need a riding buddy for sure. Anyone up to? :)
  5. With only a week I'd pick one thing and practice it.

    You don't want to try and do too much too quickly. Doing this will fill your head with far too many things to think about and ultimately cause you to make mistakes.

    So in your shoes, I would do the HART course, and then just ride the rest of the time focusing on what you learnt from the course, even just picking one or two things that stood out from the course each day would help tremendously.
  6. Some update if anyone is interested.
    I only did HART.
    Glad raven was happy to mentor me.
    Really plenty to work on.

    But I would still do more training if anything would be available these days.
  7. Go watch twist of the wrist 2 by keith code. Theres a torrent on the net but its not that much to buy either.

    Teaches you the correct technique to go quicker. The basics i suppose. Turned my spur riding from "fcuk ended up in the dirt" to "fcuk this is awesome"
  8. Yeah, I watched it multiple times and done the superbike school too.
    But there are a few things many people don't agree with (such as chopping the throttle and running wide - still trying to do it, but it's a myth for me now).

    I take any advice these days with a grain of salt.
  9. You could try out a week long tour, packing (economically) a weeks worth of stuff on the bike and keeping a relatively small proportion of the total mileage on main highways. This will improve your riding in a lot of ways you don't appreciate until you do a multi day tour.

    Dirt bike is always a good idea: not necessarily in this week off, but you can try at some later time what I did a while back, when I was in SE Asia anyway - Cambodia in my case - I hired a dirt bike + experienced Cambodian dirt bike rider and got him to lead me around. Cheapie, cheapie compared to doing similar in Australia. I'm still not good at it or anything, but getting someone to teach you dirt biking in a developing country will give you both cheaper tuition and more busted up roads ;)
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Agree about the dirt bikes, although you probably know more than me if you have been doing trials.

    I think you are off on the 60km/h stopping distance though. Even if you ignore reaction time and distance, then 1G deceleration, which is slightly optimistic, would give you about 14m stopping distance from 60km/h. Five metres is only the length of a family sized station wagon.
  11. experience in the saddle - as above has been mentioned...week long trip would train you good and hard....live eat breathe motorbike ...no other distractions besides where you'll get petrol...eat...and stay for the night...

    but it isn't really teaching you anything new...just...perfecting your existing skills and learning how to deal with fatigue
  12. #12 Nightowl, Jan 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 13, 2015
    Ummm, why be practicing this? :shock:

    Methinks you're doin' it wrong ;) here's a couple of potential outcomes ...


    If tend towards oversteering, chances are you're likely to be countering the running wide phenomena.

    Developing smooth throttle control will stand you in good stead when upgrade (if not it can come back to bite).

    As you've done the Superbike School, I'd have thought they'd have covered the "no brakes" drill.

    This is also a good one to practice in addition to the top suggestions given.
  13. If I am assessing for a license..ie P's. I give you 15m to pull it up @ 60.
    And yup 5m is a controlled stop, as in you know your going to do it.

    Most bikes can achieve over 1G in stopping power.
  14. Yeah chopping the throttle is only part one of keith's 'code'. Mastering the part where you try to avoid, at all costs, looking where you go....that one's hard mannn

    Nah but srsly wut?
  15. Are you insured for any potential injuries through travel insurance? Sounds like a great idea to do the dirt stuff in SE Asia!
  16. I'm fairly sure what you're talking about there is NOT chopping the throttle. Chopping (or rolling off the throttle quickly) the throttle will almost always cause the bike to straighten up, and the bike to run wide. If you did it at a really severe lean angle you are almost definitely going to lose the front wheel and crash.

    dnagir, what are things people don't agree with? I think you may have misunderstood something somewhere as no rider training I have done has disagreed with what Twist of the Wrist teaches.
  17. Thought that might be the case Desmond, just wanted to make sure no one mistook your attempt at humour and thought it might be a good idea to chop the throttle mid corner.
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Bretto, you're right that most bikes (but not most riders) can achieve better than 1G deceleraion rate. However, to stop from 60 km/h in 5 m you'd need a deceleration rate of about 2.8 G's, and no bike can achieve that!

    In fact, giving your students 15 m to stop is a bit harsh in my opinion... They'd need to achieve a consistent rate of deceleration of about 0.95 G. That's achievable on most (probably all) bikes in dry conditions, but is not something you'd expect from an inexperienced rider :)
  19. You need to check if your travel insurance policy covers motorcycle use. Some do, some don't.

    I recommend Cambodia :) Laos would be good too but it is less developed and harder to hire dirt bikes although people still do it.
    • Like Like x 1