Demanding the highest levels of observation
Whilst for many, biking is an exhilarating pastime – increasing numbers are opting to learn to ride a motorcycle for economic reasons. On-the-whole, motorcycles are less expensive to purchase, tax and insure than cars. Taking account of how much it costs to learn to ride a motorcycle, bikes offer a cheaper route to getting mobile for the first time. Parking is generally easier and less expensive with a motorcycle. Motorcycles can also afford faster travel, by allowing riders to minimise the frustrations of traffic congestion. Given these benefits, there is also a good case to learn to ride a motorcycle for environmental reasons.
All good arguments in favour of two wheels, but on the flip-side – new (and existing) riders must recognise and take responsibility for their own vulnerability on the roads. This requires an investment in good protective clothing, plus a commitment to both ‘learner’ and ongoing skills training. On today’s faster, congested and more ‘distracted’ roads – rider responsibility demands the highest levels of observation, anticipation and of intuitively reading-the-road.
Keep it on the black stuff!
Following on from Compulsory Basic Training (CBT) – riders who successfully pass their Module One (MOD1) and Module Two (MOD2) practical tests, can (from age 24) gain an unrestricted motorcycle licence. Whilst this training sets minimum standards for learner riders, allowing them to ride unaccompanied – it is effectively the lowest measure of rider skill and rider safety. This slightly contentious observation is supported by statistics that attribute a disproportionate number of motorcycle accidents to rider error.
For new riders reading this, can we therefore suggest that CBT, MOD1 and MOD2 do not tick all the boxes of how best to learn to ride a motorcycle. As such, novice motorcycle riders should take to the roads with care, with responsibility and with a commitment to levels of ongoing and advanced motorcycle training. Keep it on the black stuff!
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