Basic counter steering (CBT)

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Basic counter steering for learner motorcycle riders

Counter steering takes time to master

Counter steering is an essential skill for safely navigating through corners at speed. At slow speed the handlebars are turned to steer the bike (as with the U-turn and figure-of-eight). Counter steering takes time to master and learner riders tend to improve as they develop ‘muscle memory’ through ongoing practice. Riders should ensure that their speed in corners does not exceed their ability!

Push on the ‘inside’ bar

Look in the direction of intended travel. In a bend look ‘through’ the corner and to the exit of the bend. Locate the aiming point through the corner and at the start of the corner, gently push the handlebar with the palm of the hand – down and away (in the direction of travel). This weight-transfer results in the motorcycle leaning in to the corner and as this happens, it becomes a natural manoeuvre to navigate the bend.

  • To counter steer right – Look right – Push right
  • To counter steer left – Look left – Push left

Counter steering is a progressive skill and must be practiced and first mastered at slower speeds. With progressive practice comes increasing confidence and competence.

To safely counter steer, remember

  • Look in the direction of intended travel
  • Keep the head up, look ahead and ‘through’ the corner
  • Do not look down at the ground
  • Do not focus on a single point
  • With the palm of the hand – push the handlebar forward, down and in the intended direction of travel
  • Relax and go with it
  • Lean slightly in to the corner
  • The bike will go where your chin is pointing
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Get free access to the CBT audio guide

FREE membership includes:
CBT essential audio guide

CBT tip sheets

Rider basics
Key skills
Junction guide
Road rides

Resources do not substitute professional motorcycle training and are subject to our terms.