I am soooo scared! Help!

by JoAnn
(Hamburg, NY)

Got my permit, got my helmet, jacket and boots. Took the written part of the motorcycle safety course and passed with flying colors. Got out on the range and FROZE!!!! Actually steamed up the inside of the helmet, lol!

I bought a bike and it is an automatic. I know all of you out there with standard bikes are laughing at this point because riding an automatic should be simple. But, I have never in my life ridden anything with a motor other than a car. I am TERRIFIED to give it any throttle whatsoever. I can't get myself to go fast enough to put my feet on the pegs.

My boyfriend is so patient with me, I can't believe it. Went to a parking lot and I was able to ride about 15' three times and then I had to stop because I was going into a full-blown panic attack. He said fine, we'll do it again when you're ready.

How can I get over that fear of actually moving. 5 miles per hour feels like 105 to me!

Comments for I am soooo scared! Help!

Click here to add your own comments

Jun 13, 2011
Thank you, CANewbie
by: JoAnn

I feel your pain. I'm now going up and down the parking lot but still afraid to turn. Dear God it makes me so angry when I read about these people who never rode before and just get on and go. I got a DVD by Jerry "Motorman" Palladino entitled Ride Like a Pro for the Ladies. Will watch it this week. This guy is a motorcycle cop and he has a whole series of DVD's. This one is no longer sold (BF got it on EBay for me).

Keep me posted on your progress.

Jun 13, 2011
Scared to death of putting my feet on the pegs
by: CAnewbie

I got my Motorcycle permit last Thursday. On Saturday I went up to Sacramento with my DH and his buddy Alex to pick up my blue 2010 Ninja 250. Both of them ride Ducati's....They already say how "gentle" the 250 is compared to their 848's.

On Saturday night we went to a parking lot when I practiced duck walking. I got my feet up on the pegs, but had problems with "grabbing" the breaks because I wasn't use to the controls. I probably drove back and forth three times and attempted a turn, but panicked. But I didn't drop my bike! I know I can't be scared to put my feet on the pegs but I am.

Sunday, we went to the same parking lot to just work on the breaking. Without turning on the bike my DH would push me and tell me when to stop. I learned using one finger on my controls is enough to stop the whole bike. I also worked on the rear break.

May 30, 2011
A Little More Progress
by: JoAnn

So...here I am again. Back to the parking lot today and was able to ride the length of the entire thing 4 times, starting and stopping correctly!!! I walked the turnaround but on the last one I ALMOST actually took the turn. Chickened out and stopped.

This may seem like very little progress but for me it's huge. I only wish I could get to that parking lot every decent weather day. It takes me 10 minutes at least of just sitting still on the bike with it running to work up the nerve to give it throttle and move.

Maybe by the end of summer I'll actually get out of the parking lot????

May 24, 2011
by: robin

Oh my gosh...am so happy for you. Who knew there were human training wheels available??? You are keeping a sense of humor and that will help a lot!! And to have a supportive and helping boyfriend...well that is wonderful. Hang in there...keep us posted!

May 23, 2011
Made Some Progress!
by: JoAnn

Having found out that they don't make training wheels for motorcycles (lol!), I had to come up with another plan. A friend of mine said that when her boyfriend taught her to ride years ago that he put her in front of him up by the tank. He operated the controls but she had her hands on them too so she could feel what he was doing.

I have reached the point of desperation, so that sounded reasonable to me. Thank God for a long, lean boyfriend. I got on the bike while he was putting his boots on and immediately started to cry. That's how crazy this fear is. Well, we finally got going just on his road and I got to feel what it would be like to be in control, but he was my training wheels. After about the third pass of his house, I finally took the controls over. Started and stopped a few times then actually rode for about 1/2 mile and reached (OMG!) 30 mph!

This probably seems crazy to all of you who took to it like ducks to water, but it was a HUGE step for me.

It's going to be a loooong summer, hope he doesn't get tired of riding bitch!

May 17, 2011
I am with You
by: christine

I went thru Motorcycle Classes and I think I inhaled when I started the course and exhaled at the end of the day...LOL the instructor noticed I was not breathing..

May 14, 2011
Don't give up.
by: Alex

I went through the class in 2002 or 3. I have dropped and crashed. I love riding. I went through a period of a year when I couldn't get back on after I crashed in 2005. I have ridden everything from a scooter, a 500, 650, 1200, 1100 and recently I bought my first NEW bike, 2010 Stratoliner Deluxe 1900. The balance is awesome and the ride is SO smooth! I love it! She's my BEAST! I respect the bike and the road. You will gain the confidence over time. Never under-estimate the stupidity and ignorance of people on the road! Good Luck!

May 12, 2011
Get Back On That Horse
by: Sheila

I'm 5 feet tall and 95 pounds. If I can ride, you can too. I grew up riding and now ride a Honda Metropolitan. Just got a license in March. I was one of two girls in the class. The other girl left the class on the first day. I had wonderful instructors that went one step at a time. The first exercises were a little boring, but got more challenging. I was nervous about the unknown of the class, but made it through fine. I love riding and get out as often as I can. Don't give up. Get back on that horse. It will click in due time. Best wishes.

May 12, 2011
I Still Get Scared Sometimes
by: Anonymous

I've been riding over 10 years - started out on a scooter (250), moved up to a 650 motorcycle, and now back on a scooter (but 600cc - a beast!).

I actually miss the shifting, but just like how a scooter rides, and its low center of gravity. Some people look at it funny, but I've ridden further on it than many way bigger motorcycles, and I also pull it out of the garage and ride it to work every day - with a great big grin on my face!

It is not a bad thing to feel afraid - in fact, it's a normal, healthy response to something that is inherently risky. However, there is a point at which too much fear or timidity can hold you back from making progress, or keep you from doing something that could really give you a lot of joy!
Doing some riding maneuvers hesitantly can cause problems, just as doing them rashly and fearlessly can.

I have watched the "lightbulb go on" for many riders now - and I am sure it will for you, too. Maybe it would be helpful to have a different rider (maybe a female who has been through overcoming her fear!) practice with you. They might be more able to meet you where you are, and help you learn how to get past your fear.

May 12, 2011
I Hear You, Angie!
by: JoAnn

Being counseled(?)out was terrible. I did the walk of shame back to my car and cried and cried and cried. I am not used to feeling like a loser and I was so very disappointed. I didn't anticipate not being able to keep up, I truly didn't.

My e-mail address is jrzd5510@gmail.com

Would love to hear from you since you seem to be in exactly the same place as I am. Maybe we can encourage each other. I intend to hit the parking lot this weekend too to give it another try. I wish there was one closer so that I could go to it by myself because no matter how patient he is, BF is bound to get frustrated. I mean how boring it's going to be to stand there and just watch someone start, stop, go 20', stop, over and over.

Will keep you posted.

May 12, 2011
by: Allie

I have been beating myself up for days now after being asked to leave the MSF course the first day, after reading every book and manual and mechanics guide I can get my hands on. The theory I studied so hard and prepped for; the physical part, wasn't really possible to prepare myself. I've never operated any motor vehicle, not even a golf cart, in my life. So coming out and doing these maneuvers was so exciting, yet terrifying, and of course I couldn't keep up.

I begged for more time to practice, practice all the first exercises they taught me before moving on, but they were on a schedule and I got less and less confident as we went through the curriculum, till they finally counseled me out. I searched out and signed up for private one-on-one lessons, but only after completely raking myself over the coals and doubting my validity as a human being (I wish I was exaggerating). I was so humiliated and ashamed of myself. I kept reading all these smug forum posters on other sites saying they'd seen people kicked off the course (almost always women) because "they just didn't get it and probably never would." I thought maybe there's some innate inability to operate vehicles in me and maybe I just knew it all along and that's why I never tried before.

Reading through these I can see that there's nothing that can't be overcome with patience and hard work and practice, there's not a magic ability I lack. This gives me hope and is making me so excited to be able to learn at my own pace and know other folks have had the same feelings before. Thank you so much for sharing?

May 11, 2011
Majesty 2009
by: Anonymous

I just got my learner permit and bought a new 2009 Majesty. I rode for the first time yesterday. I rode up my street and back. I dropped it. I did not know how to turn. I think I did not breathe the whole time. I was sweating, my heart was pounding out of my chest in short I was scared to death! I went for a little bit, but anxiety was getting the best of me and I knew I had to stop.

Three hours later we went to a parking lot and I felt much calmer. I read all I could about taking turns and while wide I did it! I did discover that I prefer left turns over right. I guess that means I would have a chance to make it around the block, but I am not ready to do that yet. We are heading back out to the parking lot this weekend so I can practice. I do not plan on riding on busy roads until I have done my basic riding course.

From one newbie to another, go at your pace and what you are comfortable with. I like you have a son and hubby that are so patient with me. It makes it much easier to get over my fear.

May 11, 2011
Step by Step
by: "Moon"

Been there done that. Best advice, take a motorcycle safety course. The teaching is progressive and at the end, you are qualified to do slow turns and figure 8's in a parking lot, but you have been taught the basics. You start with duck walking the bike and progress through turns, stops etc.. My soon to be husband (then) very wisely said.. "It will just make you more nervous if I try to teach you. Someone impartial will tell you straight up".

My motorcycle sat in the garage for a month as I waited for the course. I'd go out and sit on it, and finally after a week I was brave enough to ask. "How do you shift this?" I drive a standard but the toe thing is totally different, and add in the throttle/choke combo.. well pffft I was lost! *L*

After the course I would sneak out of my subdivision and ride some back roads with very little traffic. The class was in March and my goal was to do the 25 mile Interstate commute on "Ride to Work" in July. I made it! Then in August did a 400 mile ride to meet up with a group. October I rode from Arkansas to Florida and back for Biketoberfest, and the following June I did an Iron Butt Run (1000+ miles in under 24 hours).
Don't expect to just take off on a poker run or cross country, progression is the best with a little push each time to do a little bit more. It will build your confidence and increase your comfort zone.

May 10, 2011
Thanks for the Support

Thank you all so much for the support. It's good to know that I am not the only one who was so damned scared starting out. I feel like such a loser, you know?

The bike is at BF's house because that makes more sense -- will never ride without him for the foreseeable future. Today I'm going over and will sit on the bike, practice in the driveway at very low speed, with feet down, starting and stopping over and over. Hopefully at some point (not today, for sure), I will get brave enough to lift those feet and move a little more.

The parking lot thing is great but I am so stressed that I'm still not ready to spend a lot of time on it so it's kind of a waste.

This is the first thing in my life that I've really doubted being able to do. That in itself is very scary. I'm pretty ballsy otherwise and will give almost anything a try so that's another reason why this fear is bothering me so much.

Again, thank you and will keep you posted.

May 09, 2011
by: Jenny Hanley Batt

I agree with the others. Take your time, it will get easier each time. I started riding dirtbikes when I was 12. And I still flunked to riding part of my test the first time, because I was nervous. felt like an idiot. But I got over it. Was scared to death the first time i rode my own at sturgis. took corners at my own speed, had a few scares, but I figure the people I ride with can either wait for me or I can catch up later. If they don't like it, tough. At least you are trying and being safe. I fell over when I grabbed the front brake to hard one time. It happens to everybody at some time. Even the big tough guys. they just may not admit it. So you get up, get on, and try again. Concentrate on how great it feels when you ride, and why you wanted to ride in the first place. There is no other feeling like it in the world. Good Luck! YOU CAN DO IT GIRLFRIEND!

May 09, 2011
Sooo Scared
by: robin

Hi...I am not laughing...I have an automatic, a Ridley which I really love. It is my first bike ever and perfect for me. However, I can relate even with the automatic, I was terrified. I spent hours in a parking lot doing turns and figure 8's. Spent hours with my patient HD buddy doing starts and stops and just riding in traffic. Now 2,000 mile later, you can't get me off of it and have confidence that I never thought possible. Let me know how you continue to do.

Here is my email robinc.tucker@gmail.com

what kind of bike did you get?

Hang in there!!!

May 09, 2011
Patience and Practice
by: Anonymous

You need to take your time and be patient and ride at your own pace not anyone else's. If your boyfriend has been patient with you that's great but maybe you need someone not so close to you to ride with you and help you out. Someone very patient and good at teaching.

Go to a huge empty parking lot like a college and practice, practice, practice. No traffic or cars around. And work on the things that make you the most nervous over and over.

I have my permit, and took the class. I also passed the written and took the first day of riding class. I too got very stressed and anxious and nervous but from what my female friends tell me many of them reacted and felt the same way.They told me to just be calm and go at my own pace I got so many helpful tips from my riding friends and I had to determine which worked best for me. I have one day of class left and hope to pass but I am going to not be hard on myself. One area I need to work on is stopping and shifting, so I plan to go and stop, stop, stop, shift, shift, shift.But I am not having anyone close to me help me but riders who are very calm and patient.

I own my own bike and it has been parked in my garage for a few months and I so want to ride it but my comfort level and safety come first.

As my friends have all told me to stick with it and take my time so I pass this on to you. Take your time, ride at your pace, practice practice practice and stick with it.

Good luck!

May 09, 2011
Don't Give Up
by: nieg

I think you need to realize ...just like me...why do I have an MC license??...How did you achieve that..so I say to myself..I got it because I KNOW how to ride a motorcycle..Just relax before sitting on your bike and remember the stuff your learned at class..I do that all the time ..!!and before you know it you be riding good luck and don't give up..!If it's something that you wanted to do you will do it!!.

May 09, 2011
I Was Scared Too
by: Anonymous

I used to be scared when I rode as well, and years later I still get that way. I was scared of going fast and feeling like I was falling off (by the way, I race airplanes so it is not natural for me to be scared of going fast). I just gradually started going farther and faster till I got over the fear.

May 09, 2011
Me Too
by: bobi

I actually traded my 4 wheeler for a bike that all my biker friends think is awesome. I've always been passenger except on my 4 wheeler and it was electronic shift. Now, since I've had it a week or so I've talked myself completely out of it. The closest anyone of my friends lives that rides is 40 miles, so I'm just gonna sell it. If I could afford an automatic bike I'd get one, but I can't so if nothing else I'll get a SCOOTER!

The manual transmission is what scares the crap out of me. This is too much bike for me any way, I'm sure. (It's a 1996 Honda Shadow 600, bored to an 800 and it's a bobber.)

May 09, 2011
Re: I am soooo scared! Hellp!
by: Wendy Reilly

You are lucky to have such a patient boyfriend. He is smart to tell you "when you're ready." Just keep at it; and take it a little at a time. Keep a positive attitude. Before long you'll be loving it. It's a positive morale booster!

Click here to add your own comments

Return to Her-Motorcycle Forum CLOSED.

Her Motorcycle

Our Newsletter



Don't worry -- your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Her-Motorcycle.com Ezine.

Most Popular Discussions
All Forums Her-Motorcycle Forum Ask A Motorcycle Question Women's Motorcycle Clubs

Guest Content

Your Bikes
The Bikes Women Love To Ride

Just Ride!
Learn to Ride Best Motorcycle For A Woman Sport/Touring Bikes New Bikes Used Bikes Bike Values Insurance

Road Trips
USA Road Trips Europe Road Trips Motorcycle Friendly Accomodation

Gear & Gadgets
Helmet Hair Motorcycle Riding Gear Online Partners Parts & Gear Search Motorcycle Accessories

Archives & Resources
Guest Articles History Maintenance Winterizing A Motorcycle
[?] Subscribe To This Site

follow us in feedly
Add to My Yahoo!
Add to My MSN
Subscribe with Bloglines

| Home | What's New | Site Search | About | Contact | Disclaimer | Privacy Policy |

Return to Top
Copyright© 2007-2013 Her-Motorcycle.com. All Rights Reserved.