New rider and I need some adivce

by Jill
(Carlsbad CA)

After riding on the back of my husbands Harley for many years, i decided at the age of 52, it was time to get my own bike. My husband bought me a 2000 Harley Deuce but i am having difficulty learning to ride. I believe there are a lot of ladies out there that need advice and encouragement who are just learning to ride.

Comments for New rider and I need some adivce

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Mar 15, 2013
How i got my wife, my family, my daughters and my jb back
by: Orison

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Nov 13, 2012
Yes, take the MSF Course or...
by: Dar

Riding a motorcycle is easy, it's the safety aspect that should always be your main concern, so... go back and retake the course, perhaps on a different model bike. They're all 250's i believe, but you may have a better feeling on a different make/model. OR, Harley Davidson also has a Rider's Edge course you may consider. I passed my MSF class and have my endorsement but still haven't bought a bike yet, so i'm considering taking the Rider's Edge course as well so as to stay fresh and to see what new information, if any, they provide versus what was taught in the MSF class. Lastly, youtube has millions of videos on riding, as do the MSF website. Take advantage of those and yes you will become one with your bike.

Nov 12, 2012
by: Turtle

The best advise that anyone could give you is go back through the class again and again until it clicks with you. Each time you do you will learn a little more and each time you go out and practice you will learn more. Until you can master the basics please don't get out on the road and out ride your skill level. I am 5'4" and ride a roadking that has not been lowered. It has nothing to do with the size or height of the rider but when you learn how to ride (I mean really ride) you can get on anything that is put in front of you with confidence. Don't get discouraged, just practice, It might save your life.

Nov 11, 2012
Re: New Rider
by: Jacki

After being on the little 250 at the safety course and then getting on my bike, it was so big and bulky, massive and awkward and definitely intimidating. I rode around a school parking lot to get used to it. After getting my second bike, I rode the first one and again thought how big and bulky it was. Guess that first one just wasn't the right one for me. Maybe your deuce doesn't fit you right either? Always look where you want to go. I tend to steer it like a car, but when I get into a turn that I don't quite have, I remember to PUSH the handle bar... that always works. Find a nice group to ride with. My group always let me lead the pack, only so they could watch out for my mistakes, but if the speed limit was 55 and I only felt comfortable going 45, then we all went 45... and they didn't mind at all. One time another new rider was with us, we were going over a tall bridge that was windy at the top. My husband took one lane, another guy took the other and they blocked the traffic so the new girl would have both lanes to herself... tht wind pushing you around can be wicked on the nerves. Always respect your bike, when you lose that respect is when you're going to go down. And the MOST IMPORTANT thing... when you go to get off your bike, make sure the kickstand's down. :-)

Nov 11, 2012
by: Lisa Martin

Hey! It's gonna take some time. I've been riding my own for 20 years now, but when I first started I was easily intimadated because I thought I would ride just like my old man, who is a life long biker, and all my other veteran rider buddies. Don't let it bother you if you have to ride at slower speed or something...ride within your comfort zone and don't feel pressured. My best advice is keep those feet up and remember which ever direction you look is the direction the bike is gonna go, so look ahead into the road and curves and stuff. You can do it, just be patient and don't give up....ride the twisty back roads for a while until the feel of the bike and your confidence built up. A Deuce is a great bike, your gonna love it! Ride free, ride the sunsets!

Nov 10, 2012
To Jill and other new riders
by: Ginger

Hi Jill..do not get discouraged!!! It will be so worth it after you get over the first few rides. I am on my second bike. My first a Honda VTX 750 and moved up to my beautiful 2006 Honda VTX 1300R. She is black chrome and beautiful. My baby and love her! I am going to be 58 in January and love every minute I can ride. I started out on the back of my husbands bike in Feb 2005 and on Mothers day 05 I bought my own. Please do not give up and give yourself time. After I bought my first bike, I had my husband ride it to one of the high schools for me so I could ride it in the parking lot. I put 25 miles on it that day!! LOL!! I just rode around in circles, stop and go, criss crossed. Went around the opposite way because you will find that turning one way may be easier because of the lean, but you get used to it. Get used to clutch and going through the gears. Ride around your neighborhood. There are still some areas that I still am uncomfortable with and will not do. I do not force myself out of my comfort zone. Our grandkids ride with us and it has created some fantastic memories. Please get back to me and let me know how things are going.

Nov 10, 2012
new rider
by: Anonymous

I too am a new rider I took the course and got my endorsement.I got a 1200 sportster.So far have only rode in church parking lots,until I get the feel of things frist.Madbe you don't feel one with your bike yet is the bike to big for you?All I can tell you is practice practice and keep your head up I made the mistake of looking down it is true the bike goes were you are looking.Keep safe and have fun with it.

Nov 10, 2012
Thanks and further questions
by: Jill

Wow! Thank you so much for the replies and encouragement. I did take the MSF beginners course but was "counseled out", but for good reason....I couldn't do the cones. Granted i am 5' 7" and 200 pounds (!) and was on a little bike that wouldn't stay running but I just couldn't get the feel of the bike. I was either scared or uncomfortable or maybe both. Will that feeling of being one with the bike eventually come to me? My balance is horrible too, but does that just take time and practice? I have a hard time on the deuce too....it is a lot of machine. Am i like goldilocks who needs the "just right" bike or should I just keep practicing on Lucy the Deucy?
Thanks again for the good advice and taking the time to help me! I am determined to ride and wont give up.

Nov 10, 2012
Learning to Ride
by: Tina A.

Jill, I have always wanted to ride. I have only ever ridden on the back of others a few times but for some reason I always knew I wanted to ride my own. My Husband said I should go ahead and take the class, I didn't want to since I was afraid by the time I could get a bike I would forget what I had learned. I signed up and took my class, in the rain, I was scared but they were so nice, very helpful and started us out slow. The bikes they provide are small 250's. I passed the class and got my endorsement. I bought a 1200 sportster from my uncle, had to take it to get tuned up and a new battery so the first and only time I ever rode was from the shop when picking it up. I was sooo scared, I had to stop for gas too. I started riding it to work. It was April when I started riding and now I love it even more. I ride mostly every day to work and I even dumped it once leaving work of all places! Everyone was cool about it and said I got it out of the way and there would be other times, it just happens. I just turned 43 and I wish I would have done this sooner but I did it and now I ride just about every day to work. You will be so glad you started once you take the class and are riding your own! Good luck to you =)

Nov 10, 2012
Take the MSF course
by: TammyT

The course is designed for beginners, so it's perfect. You should be able to find a course in your area by searching online. You don't need any experience to take the course, and it teaches you the absolute most important things you will need to learn. And when you are done, having passed the course, in most states (maybe all, I'm not sure) you won't have to take the riding portion of the test to get your MC license endorsement. Then go to a large parking lot, like at a nearby college or large church and practice, practice, practice. Start with short rides in your neighborhood on quiet streets with hubby, or another experienced rider, following and work your way up to longer rides. Keep at it. It will come easier soon. Good luck and stay safe.

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