The added challenge of limited space
The U-turn exercise is an excellent opportunity for new riders to practice developing their slow control skills within the confines of a limited area. Confidence in implementing this manoeuvre pays dividends in a number of ‘real-life’ road scenario’s and can contribute significantly to rider safety.
This U-turn is usually practiced in a safe environment and between painted lines or a set of cones. This ensures there are no physical barriers in place in the early stages. The U-turn exercise requires slow control co-ordination of clutch, throttle, rear brake, steering, body posture and head position. Unlike the figure-of-eight exercise there is the added challenge of limited space.
Mirror checks and lifesavers are required
The key is for the rider to ‘create’ maximum room within the turning area, whilst maintaining full control of the clutch, throttle and rear brake (if needed). Mirror checks and lifesavers are required, as this exercise is intended to represent performing a U-turn between two kerbs of a road – where there is a clear requirement for these observations
- Carry out rear observations before pulling away
- Keep the machine steady and under full control whilst riding parallel to the ‘line’ (kerb)
- Carry out a lifesaver before turning
- Ensure motorcycle is close to the ‘line’ (kerb) prior to turning – this creates maximum turning space
- Look in the intended direction of travel throughout
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