Anyone that has ever ridden a motorcycle will know that it can be a form of fun that makes your adrenaline rush, but motorcycles can also be dangerous and they need to be respected because of that.
Statistically, motorcyclists are a lot more likely to die in a crash than people who drive cars, but a lot of people are able to ride their motorcycles for years and years without ever having a single accident.
Knowing 9 motorcycle safety tips can help you stay among them.
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Tip 1: The importance of wearing a helmet
Whether or not a helmet should be worn is often an emotional topic in the world of motorcycles, but the reality is that the risk of not wearing a helmet greatly outweighs the risk of wearing them.
Statistically, fatal head injuries in crashes are around 40% more likely if the rider was not wearing a helmet.
Severe brain injuries are also three times more likely. You have to remember that our skulls and our brains are actually incredibly delicate.
A severe injury could lead to loss of life or permanent disability due to the amount of trauma that could have been caused.
Studies have proven that full-face helmets are the best option due to their strength and durability.
Helmets have also come a long way, as they are now lightweight and comfortable.
Tip 2: Sticking to a bike that you can handle
Whether you are a new rider or someone who is getting back into riding after a few decades of avoiding motorcycles, you need to know your own limits.
The performance of modern motorcycles is intense, having advanced a lot over the past few decades.
It can be really easy to find yourself out of your depth with modern bikes.
The best thing that you can do involves finding a motorcycle that suits you and your riding style, opposed to trying to change yourself to suit the motorcycle.
When seated, you should be able to plant both of your feet firmly on the floor, not just your tip toes.
It should also be really easy for you to get onto and off of the bike. You also have to consider what you want to get out of the motorcycle.
Do you need to keep up with fast moving traffic, or do you want a bike for standard commuting?
Tip 3: Making sure that you have the right gear
Jeans and a top will never protect you from the road if you do have an accident and end up coming off of your bike.
Even sliding your bike can result in a lot of damage if you are not wearing appropriate gear.
The right gear will offer you the maximum amount of protection possible, not only in a crash situation, but also from wind chill, bugs and flying debris.
You should expect to get road rash sooner or later if you do go out on your motorcycle without wearing proper gear.
Ideally, you should always be wearing either a leather or a reinforced jacket, strong gloves, full pants and over the ankle boots.
You should even wear these in the heat of summer.
Tip 4: Learning to work with the weather, rather than against it
If you can avoid riding your motorcycle in bad weather conditions, you should.
Riding when the road is slippery really reduces the margin for error that you would usually have, while the rain also affects your own field of visibility.
Your tires will not grip the road very well and going around corners can begin to feel nerve wracking.
If you do have to ride in the rain, then you should try to make sure that you do not make any sudden maneuvers.
Try to be careful and be gentle on both your brakes and steering.
Tip 5: Concentrating on the road
Motorcycle accidents are known to occur as quickly as you can blink, especially when either car drivers or motorcycle riders are not paying attention to the road.
You need to keep your mind on your surroundings.
When riding a motorcycle, it is a good idea to always err on the side of caution, riding in a defensive way.
Try to make sure that you never go into the blind spot of another driver and make sure that you use your turn signals well in advance, ensuring that other drivers have had enough time to notice you.
Tip 6: Practice and keep your skills in check
You should never ride a motorcycle without having completed a formal riding education program, you should also make sure that you have a license for your motorcycle.
Even then, it is a really good idea to go on new riding courses from time to time.
These can occasionally teach you some new things, or allow you to focus on things that you might have become slack on without realizing.
Tip 7: Get used to checking over your bike before you ride
Never get on your motorcycle without checking it over first. It is really good to get into the habit of doing this each and every time you go out to ride your bike.
Should anything be wrong, it would be best to find out about it before you find out about the problem in the worst possible way.
Check the tires, underneath your bike, all of your lights, your turn signals and both your hydraulic and coolant fluids.
Once you have mounted your bike, you should check your clutch and throttle are functioning correctly, your mirrors, your brakes and your horn.
Tip 8: Always be in your best frame of mind when riding
There are certain circumstances that should lead to you never riding your motorcycle.
You should never ride when you are too tired, or when there are either drugs or alcohol in your system.
It is worth noting that some prescription drugs can also be dangerous, as a lot of them have side effects that include slow reaction times, dizziness and drowsiness.
You should always check your medication.
Talk to your doctor if you feel that your medication might affect your riding, as there may be alternative medications that you can take.
Tip 9: Knowing either the trail or your limits
Being familiar with a trail can make it really easy to ride your motorcycle, as you know where every corner or bump in the road is, what the surface of the road is like and the speed at which you can go at.
When you are riding in an unfamiliar territory, you need to know your own limits.
You might go around a blind corner fast and hit gravel, which could be disastrous.
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Your own safety when riding your motorcycle is always something that you should consider, as doing something risky naturally increases your own risk.
Make sure that you pay attention to everything around you and your own actions, as that awareness can be the key to protecting yourself on the road.
David Williams is an author with a passion for motorcycles and all things related to the world of two-wheeled vehicles. His expertise is evident on his website, The Moto Expert, where he shares his knowledge and insights with fellow enthusiasts. Follow him on social media to stay up-to-date on the latest motorcycle news, reviews, and trends. Whether you’re a seasoned rider or just starting out, David’s content is sure to inform and entertain. Join his community and become a part of the conversation today.