New Rider Anxiety

by Rhonda
(Coweta, OK)

I just took the Riders Edge course and had a blast, enjoyed it so much I didn't want it to end, passed all the tests and got the endorsement on my license. I purchased a 2007 Honda 750 Aero and love it!!

Now here is the problem, I have ridden it only in my neighborhood, I feel great when I am on it and my confidence is certainly building but to go anywhere other than my neighborhood I have to get on a busy highway and just thinking about it really gives me anxiety, I have not ridden in any "traffic" yet and don't feel like I'm quite ready but I'm sick of going round and round the block. Should I just "Go For It"?

I also have an issue with right turns, not nearly as easy as a left turn, I know I am not the only one that has this problem as several of the ladies in my class had issues with it as well.

Any advice or words of encouragement would be so appreciated!!!

Comments for New Rider Anxiety

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Dec 05, 2010
I was in your shoes in May!

I was just like u in April 2010!! I just got my license in April and a bike in May and was just like u riding around the neighborhood....til my guy took me out on a early Sunday morning..we got out on the highway it was great! Next thing I know...I'm commuting 32miles each way to work solo!! So just get out there..be careful..have someone with u the first few times..the go solo!! good luck..if I can do it, u can!! ( :

Nov 30, 2010
by: Madelon


I am a new rider as well, I bought a Ninja 250 3 weeks ago, and am not game enough yet to enter traffic, I go up and down our road with my husband behind me, It's a 15 km round trip LOL, Lots of hills and curves. I hope I get confident enough to venture further. I find it hard to think of everything at the same time, My hands and arms are sore from hanging on when I get off.
I am flat out doing 60 km hr. Hope it will get better with a bit of time and practice.

Nov 01, 2010
Giant Leap
by: Rhonda

First let me say thank you, thank you, thank YOU!!!!!!!!! I cannot express enough gratitude for your post.

Sunday I took my first ride out. The traffic was very light and it was a beautiful morning. My anxiety level was through the ROOF and I thought I might throw up!!!! LOL

My husband led me onto the highway and we made a 25 mile trip to my parents home, I had to travel through some road construction, make a right hand turn with cars in the opposite lane (not to graceful but done safely :)), took a few curves and navigated through traffic with some confidence.

I am excited to go again! I really do not think I could have done it this soon without all the words of wisdom and encouraging advice, I cannot say thank you enough. Wish I could meet each of you!!!


Nov 01, 2010
Practice Builds Confidence
by: HarleyVal

I took my Beginner Riders Course the last weekend of July, 2010. I had never, ever ridden (except on the back of my hubby's bike). Once I passed the course, I felt just good enough to ride around cones in a parking lot! LOL

I spent the next several weeks practicing in parking lot of a closed mall close to home. My husband would ride my bike there and I followed in the car. Once there, I practiced my skills. Stops and starts, turning left and right, just getting comfortable. Once I felt more comfortable doing those things in the parking lot, I progressed to the road that circled the mall. There were a few cars, but still not real traffic.

This may have been a much slower path than taken by others, but it fit MY comfort level. I am now riding on the roads. I ride in traffic, and I ride curvy roads. It was important for me to feel comfortable. The first time on the road, my husband led. That definitely helped me feel more comfortable.

You will always feel a little nervous about doing something new on the bike for the first time. But I think the more practice you can get, the more comfortable you will be. Practice, practice, practice.

Good luck to you and keep us posted!

Nov 01, 2010
by: Lynn - Florida

First off, nice choice of bike. I got to ride the same bike for an entire summer last year and loved it. The Aero has a bit of a rake on the front end, making it more difficult turning, especially at slower speeds. I found if I approached a right turn from the left side of my lane, it made for a easier turn. Also, looking ahead (and not down) helps to keep my body in position. Traffic is scary, no matter how long you've been riding. Experience will help in that area. I pretend like the cars can't see me, taking responsibility to stay out of their blind spots, etc.

Oct 31, 2010
Agree with Previous Comments
by: Rene L


I agree with the previous posters and also wanted to add that when I had the experience of needing to get up the nerve to leave my immediate neighborhood and felt nervous, I also talked to myself reminding myself that I was OK, that I knew what I was doing, and that if I made a mistake (shifted into the wrong gear or something minor) that all I had to do was breath, think and correct my mistake. I also found that it helped me to remind myself that I knew the rules of the road.

Definitely finding an understanding and patient friend who will allow you to go at your own pace to go out with you is a good idea. Finally, on your first few ventures out, make sure to travel familiar routes. I found it helped me feel more confident.

Good luck. I think most of us have experienced and with time and patience overcome what you are going through. You will be fine : )

Oct 30, 2010
by: Take it slowly

Riding with another person on the busier street does help the anxiety level. Also, try going on the street on a Sunday morning - usually less traffic. The day I bought my bike, my husband took off work early and we went riding. After going around the neighborhood, he turned onto our main street at 5:15 pm on a Wednesday afternoon. I would not have done this while riding alone, but felt secure and enjoyed it. Good luck!

Oct 29, 2010
New Rider Anxiety
by: Anonymous

Keep your head up and LOOK exactly where you want to go in those turns. Your body and bike will always go where you look.

Oct 29, 2010
Don't be Afraid
by: Romotolady

If you drove in the neighborhood, that means you can control the bike so, if you drive at slow speed and very careful, it's ok to go on the busier streets.

Advice: at the beginning, find 2-3 friends who'll go with you, each one on her bike. They'll help and advice you, don't matter what's happening.

I hope what that what I said will help you.

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