Being on a motorcycle is a little bit of excitement, freedom and peace. On the back of the motorcycle nothing matters anymore, it’s just you and the road, the scenery around. It’s like the perfect ballance between yourself and the world, and I’m just the passenger.
And all these went away when, after a minor incident last year, this season I was so afraid to ride. At every corner, while leaning, I thought we were going to crash. Moreover I was terrified of leaning on the right side – which was strange, I couldn’t explain it to myself either, ”cause leaning on the left is more dangerous, you have the cars coming from the other lane. I used to be so excited every time we went for a ride and I wanted to feel that again.
So, after a small search around the web I did find some advice on what to do and how to act while the motorcycle is leaning.
I cured myself while riding with Mau on long distances and on unknown roads (I observed that when I knew some corner was coming I was panicking) and respecting the rule to go along with the rider and watch over the turning shoulder.
In order to be the kind of passenger riders want to travel with and, as a girl, after 4 years of riding, I want you to remember:
- To wear clothing that will offer protection in case of an accident: footwear that protects your ankles, durable pants, an abrasion resistant jacket that zips up to your neck, gloves and of course the helmet (a good, quality one) – this makes you feel safe while being safe.
- When mounting the motorcycle make sure to let the driver know it and watch for the footpegs to be down. Try to always get on the bike from the left side. This way you will also avoid the hot exhaust pipes that can burn right through the heaviest pants.
- Once you are on the motorcycle plant your feet on the footpegs and place your hands on the riders hips, on the handle bars the moto can have on sides or in the back. In my case, while riding the red girl Suzuki SV I put my hands on the tank and all of my body weight distributes on my hands. When riding the bad boy Burgman I use the lateral handles.
- And it’s probably gonna hurt. Not only your hands. Sometimes your legs, if you squeeze too tight, and maybe your back. Let your rider know how you feel, if you need to get off and stretch.
- As previously mentioned, a golden rule for me is related to leaning. Motorcycles turn by leaning, not by steering like cars do. Don’t panic and try to position yourself for a perfect turn just by looking over the rider’s shoulder in the direction of the turn – this will put your weight where it belongs.
- The helmet will kill your looks. It’s not like in the commercials – big volume, sauvage, nice hair-do after removing it. Try to put your hair in a braid (it’s the best) or in a low bun.
- Get rid of your purse, minimize everything you need. Try to use a small make-up bag that can be stored under the saddle.
- Motorcyclists are really friendly and they wave at each other while riding. I got so excited the first time someone saluted us. Now I get a feeling of camaraderie and closeness each time someone does the biker wave to us.
- Keep your eyes on the road while you enjoy the scenery.
- Enjoy the adventure of being free and wild!