The most common mistakes for learner riders – Part 2

learner rider completing CBT

We’ve already unveiled three of the most common mistakes for learner riders and we round out the list here in part two.

Mistake 4 – Over confidence and peer pressure

When you get anything new your relatives and friends invariably want to join in.

In the same way that if you get a new games console others will want to play on it, if you get a new motorbike they’ll want to ride on it. And if they already ride, they’ll want to go out with you.

While having a passenger or riding in a group can provide some of the most enjoyable and rewarding riding on the road, both pursuits are skills in their own rights.

Riding with a passenger changes the weight and handling of your bike and it also puts somebody else’s life in your hands. That can be a lot for a new rider to cope with so make sure you’re comfortable with a passenger before allowing anyone else to hop aboard.

Similarly, riding in a group can be a distraction and peer pressure can become an issue.

Riding with faster, more experienced riders can push new riders out of their comfort zone and beyond their ability so don’t ride in a group until you’re comfortable.

Group shot of Moto3 riders

You’re not as good as these riders and neither are your mates.

Mistake 5 – The moth issue

Moths are attracted to light and will fly towards it. There’s no stopping them.

New riders need to avoid becoming a moth and remember that if you’re looking at it, you’re probably going to hit it.

When you spot a hazard that you need to avoid (a dead animal, oil on the road or worse) look at where you want to end up, rather than the hazard itself.

Mistake 6 – Eyes in the back of your head

It’d be nice to have eyes in the back of your head when you’re on a motorbike, but you haven’t, and that’s a problem that you have to actively combat.

On a bike you need to be aware of all 360° around you, not just in front. Check each side of your bike and behind you whenever you can do so safely.

Mistake 7 – Style over scars

helmets laid out at Biker Down rider safety course

Riding a motorbike can be dangerous and if you’re not wearing the right clothing, it can kill you.

Young riders often underestimate the importance of appropriate riding gear when they first get on the road.

Whether that’s to limit expense or simply a fashion choice, it’s a dangerous oversight as you lose 1mm of skin for every mph you’re travelling at.

Get the right gear and make sure it fits properly. Wear it on every trip you take on your bike as you can never foresee when you might have an accident.

Next page: The most common mistakes for learner riders - Part 1