I Need to Give Up Trying to Ride

by Lee

I've been trying to learn to ride a motorcycle for several years. I took a few classes but never finished them. I did pretty good at first and had quite a few fun rides. But I dumped my bike a few years ago and hurt myself bad enough to scare me a lot. Now whenever I ride, I choke up and make mistakes and keep crashing. I would love to ride now but I think I need to give it up. I'm so nervous that I can't loosen up enough to ride. I've tried and tried. I have lost all my confidence and feel that if I keep trying, I'm really gonna get hurt. It's really a blow to my ego but I have to accept that I just am too scared. It's definitely not worth getting hurt really bad. Guess it's time to just enjoy being on the back. Thanks

Comments for I Need to Give Up Trying to Ride

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Jul 15, 2011
Just a Thought
by: Sharon

Rather than give up riding, why not try a different kind of bike? By that I mean a maxi scooter. One like the Piaggio MP3 500. It has two front wheels which would give enormous stability, and it is an automatic. Bikes like this are only called scooters because they have the step down design and are automatics. I once saw a YouTube video on the Suzuki Bergman that showed the speedometer at 112. I personally owned one of those bikes and can tell you that it holds its own among interstate traffic. I got a huge laugh from a guy that slowed down on the interstate to gape at a scooter going 75mph. No it isn't as "Biker" to ride a maxi scooter but IF you are not dealing with shifting and stability then you can focus on riding alone. One of these might let you build your confidence and even though it isn't a Harley, you will have the wind in your face and the same thrill of riding.

Jul 13, 2011
by: Anonymous

Do not let anyone else's opinion's stop you from riding...If you really want to ride, quitting will not be an option!

Everyone has fear in the beginning..Plus some fear is healthy.

Take it slow it's not a race...and I agree everyone learns at a different level.

You will do it, if that is really what you want. Trust me...I laugh at some of the stuff I did that seems so stupid now. But this was something I had never done before.

I remember out in the parking lot at school, when they wanted you to feel the friction zone. Your bike was suppose to be on! LOL,,I thought she wanted us to rock are bike back and forth to get the feel of it..DUH I was not getting the bike was to be on and your hand on the clutch easing the clutch out until you felt the bike go forward..geez!! Have a good rider with you that helps with the confidence...Go back to class..If you want to ride..

Jul 13, 2011
Try Again
by: Marianne

I agree with scared #1. Sounds like you really don't want to give up. I would go back to square one and take classes all over again and finish. Were you alone when you fell?

I just got my license in Nov. (I'm 47) and started out on a heavy bike for me(Harley 883 sportster), I'm 5'3". I too dumped my bike several times (scratched mirrors, pipes, broke my clutch etc.) once turning onto a one lane highway. My husband was with me and we went over what I did wrong. By discussing and analyzing my mistakes and then practicing again and again in a parking lot, I was able to work on and correct the mistakes I had been making. I did take a break over the winter (Dec.,Jan.,Feb.) then got back on the bike in March. I'm taking it slow and still only go out with my husband but each time I go out, I get better and better, go further and further and my confidence is growing. I still make mistakes here and there but I now know "exactly" what I did wrong and can correct myself immediately.

Take it slow, practice in a safe spot and ride with someone who can watch what you are doing and help you work out the kinks. With time and patience, you will enjoy it!

Jul 13, 2011
Don't Give UP
by: Anonymous

Took my MSF course in April 2010. Had never ridden except on my husbands Honda back in the 70's. He had me driving it around the yard till I got tired. Passed the MSF course and went in the same day and bought my 2010 Softtail Nostalgic. He took me to Sturgis last year and I rode Custer's, the badlands, some interstate, Devil's Tower. Now when he says he's going for a ride I just ask where are we riding to today. We're going back to Sturgis this year and I'm riding Needles and Iron Mountain. Wouldn't ride either of them last year.

Jul 13, 2011
Truth hurts and no sugar coating..
by: Reesa

"and feel that if I keep trying, I'm really gonna get hurt"

If you feel that, you're probably right. Riding isn't for everyone.

Jul 11, 2011
Go at your own pace...
by: Laura

I second.. and third.. other things mentioned here. Perhaps a smaller, lighter bike... or, keep the one you have, but really take your time with it, go very slowly. If you dropped your bike at low speeds/stops, sit on it at a stand-still and tip it back and forth a little, get used to the weight at different angles. Learn what you can hold up. If you dropped it at higher speeds, I would guess you may have been going faster than you were comfortable with in the first place - ride your own ride, and don't let your riding partners push you further/faster than you want to go. If they are trying to push you too far, then they are not being good riding partners/friends. You will learn this at your own pace, as we learn everything in life at our own pace. Don't give up, but *do* make sure you are always doing what you want to do, and what you are comfortable with doing.

Jul 11, 2011
Giving up?
by: Izzy

You know, everyone has a different learning curve, so don't feel so discouraged. I think bike size is a big issue, so many women seem to want those big heavy cruisers! Have you sat on a Ninja 250 or the new CBR250 from Honda? The are both great bikes and so light they feel like a bicycle(compared to all the other bikes out there) Handle easily, too.

How about some private lessons, are those available for you?

If you really want to ride, these are all things I would consider. Sometimes when I have a big decision to make I ask myself how would I feel if... So, if you say to yourself,ok,I am not going to continue and you feel relief, then, you know it's the right thing for you right now. Whatever you decide, it needs to feel right in your heart. Maybe just put it on the shelf for a while, enjoy being a passenger and think about it later. Right now you just need to relax about the whole thing.

Jul 11, 2011
by: Anonymous

You say you took classes but never finished them, are you sure you want to ride or are you just following the crowd? Not everyone has to be out in front maybe you'd be happier as a passenger? Just something to think about.

Jul 11, 2011
Where in Washington are you at?
by: Judy

What kind of bike have you been trying to learn on?

My guess it is a very large, heavy Cruiser style, since most of the women here seem to start on one of them due to either the low seat height, or just not knowing what a huge disparity of sizes and types of bikes are available.

Before you give up entirely, let us know what it is you're trying to "wrestle" with and where you're at. I've helped mentor several riders, and I have some really small, light bikes. Maybe I can help....not only am I in Washington but along with many bikes I also have a trailer.

Jul 11, 2011
Individual Decision
by: Cindy

I would also recommend trying a smaller bike. My bike is a little top-heavy, and I have also had a few spills with a resulting confidence problem. After a short break, I got back out on the "horse" and paying special attention to the little things, my confidence has returned.

On the other hand, for very individual reasons, riding may not be for everyone. If you've given it a fair try and still don't feel confident, then maybe put it aside for a few seasons and don't beat yourself up over it. There are probably may men and women out there who would love to ride on their own bike, but for whatever reason are unable to do so... and not necessarily based on fear. You can feel good that you gave it an honest effort. Best wishes.

Jul 11, 2011
Switch to a Smaller Bike
by: Robin_uganda

It feels, like the other ladies said, you still have that glimmer of hope. Have you considered switching to a smaller bike for a bit? Once you get really comfortable, feel totally in control, you can do what you like, but it might help you feel that mastery a bit earlier if you're not wrestling a beast? Just sayin'.

Jul 11, 2011
Miss Anonymous
by: Ev

I think you need to learn to ride in your own time and at your own pace. You have to feel comfortable with your instructor(s) and with your bike. Keep at it. You'll get there in the end. Writing up on this forum only means you ARE still keen to learn how to ride. You just need a little support from those around you.

Jul 10, 2011
Me Again
by: Anonymous

Confidence will come with riding time!

Jul 10, 2011
Scared #2
by: Anonymous

Then I got my HD Sporty, went to the parking lot with my friend and had my first experience on a bike!

I dropped her every time I would stop! Sporty's are top heavy and of course I didn't know that. I also was told use your front break and don't worry about the back brake because most of your stopping power is from the front brake! Big mistake to tell a beginner! That's why I was dropping her! I learned how to get out of the way quick! I also broke several mirrors back lights, and levers! Brake and clutch and I broke my shifter off! I went to school MSF and the first class I took. I didn't make it, between the hot day and the nerves, I started to feel faint! Had to take a slip and come back another day.

I did go back and I didn't make it again. I got real faint. It didn't help the woman instructor said "Pam maybe riding just isn't for you". I never went back to that class! I went to another one and I took a class early in the morn, so the heat would not bother me. It didn't help that I also have ADD! But I did pass this class and I did not get faint. Yeah! I really didn't think I passed because I thought I sucked! But apparently I was wrong. I had my permit and now I was getting my license! Then I rode my bike with a male friend, who had been riding for 40 years. I followed him. I was scared, scared, scared. My legs would shake! I thought having to think so much would on how to operate her would never go away! Now I ride solo pretty much. Freeways, twisties everything and it is automatic to me. I can enjoy the ride instead of thinking so much. Yes there is a risk! But you just have to watch the cages, like they are out to get you! Read Read Read. Forums like this are great to meet other women. Share experiences. If you want to ride, you will do it. Hopefully you have someone to support you on it. Get back in class. None of us ever stop learning! I better go this is most likely over the 3000 limit. Good luck! Let us hear from you and how you are doing.

Jul 10, 2011
Scared #1
by: Anonymous

Do you really want to give up? It doesn't sound like you do.

Let me tell you I am 57 years old and I have been riding for two years.

I started on an HD Sporty and rode in a parking lot. I had never ridden my own in my life, not even a dirt bike!

I always rode on the back when I was young, because the love of motorcycles has been with me since a kid. I got away from the bike scene for many many years, raising my boys etc. I never thought about it. Then when I lost my husband in 07 and of course my boys are men now. I started riding on the back again, went to bike nights etc. When I started seeing women coming in riding their own, I was jealous! I wanted that to be me! I didn't know if I could or not. I asked my riding partner what he thought. He said why not? I said you don't think I'm to old to learn, he said your never to old!!

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