OK so the reason for this post is because in another post I said I will be enduringly grateful to the late Jeremy Bowdler of TwoWheels magazine for a tip that vastly improved my gearshift technique, and Raven suggested I share it, so here it is. The first ever newbie instruction I read on upshifting came from a few years old photocopy (don't know when published) by "Dave Gibson of Stay Upright". Here is my shortened summary of it's steps: 1) Check mirrors. 2) Throttle off to idle speed. 3) De-clutch quickly to disconnect drive from engine to rear wheel. 4) Lift gear lever to stop and hold it. 5) Smoothly release clutch lever all the way, while gently rolling throttle back on. 6) When clutch is fully re-engaged [...] release pressure from the gear lever. Those instructions are pretty typical of all the instruction for newbies I saw. So I rode like that for the first few months. Then, I read this by JB in TwoWheels Sep 2011:The key to quick and smooth shifting is to preload the gearshift pedal. The idea is to take the slack out of the transmission system before you try to shift. To shift up, push gently up on the shift pedal until you feel some resistance. Go too far and you'll upshift anyway, but at this stage you just want slight upwards pressure on the pedal. When it's time to shift, disengaging the clutch even just a tiny bit should allow the gear dogs to slide home smoothly and quickly. Then it's a question of easing out the clutch lever smoothly. Note that smoothly (not quickly or slowly) is the key. Get the sequence right and gearshifts can be made with the merest brush of one finger on the clutch. It's well worth practising. Downshifting is much the same in reverse, though the clutch work is slightly slower and more deliberate (you have to get the engine, gearbox and wheels turning at the appropriate speeds as quickly as possible). Preload the pedal, pull the clutch lever in and at the same time rev the engine to the speed it will be turning in the next gear down, snick the pedal and ease out the clutch. Easy to type, difficult to do.That preload upshifting technique is awesomely smooth and quick, the merest touch of the clutch allows the gear to shift, and it's not hard to do. .. I still say "f**k yeah" to myself every time I get it perfect! \\/ Thanks JB. My downshifts are still dodgy .. its harder! And fellow newbies, don't push the gear lever too hard before you clutch, or you will get a nasty crunch of gears.