Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Why I ride a motorcycle

Many people don't like the idea of getting outside of their giant steel cages and getting on the road. I personally live for it - the speed, the wind, the adrenaline, and the caution. In this post I'm going to try and dis-spell or at least rationalize some of the negative ideas put forth against motorcycles. Granted - motorcycles aren't for everyone. However some people are being dissuaded by the big muck that is dis-information.

Motorcycles are small and cannot be seen!:
Although the bit about the motorcycle being smaller than most cars/trucks is true - a large part of being seen isn't the size of the bike. Visibility of the bike can be made to be impossible to miss. There's a term every motorcyclist worth their weight in gold knows, and that's "Lane Positioning". Although this seems straight forward, lane positioning is crucial to survival in traffic. If you're not seen - you're dead. So a good bike notes every potential danger and makes sure either s/he can see the danger, or the danger can see them - best situation: both can see one another.
Another great portion of visibility is reflective-ness. If you're riding at night and you're wearing all black leather on your all black bike - of course your chances of getting hit goes up. But if you add a simple strip of reflective tape, chances are you'll be seen a lot easier. - Bike color also factors into this. During the daylight hours a brown bike can blend with landscape and not be seen easy - but reflective paint on the brown bike - or just a yellow paint job can mean all the difference.

You can lock up one of the wheels and die!:
Although the chances are higher of locking up your wheels on a bike can be higher as most cars now come equipped with ABS breaking (Alternate Breaking System) and most bikes do not. A well trained rider knows how to not only avoid the skid - but control it if s/he finds themselves in one - this is taught in most ABATE/Motorcycle training courses.

There's no safety equipment on the bike!:
No, there are no seatbelts - no rollbar - no airbags on a bike. But what a SMART rider lacks on the bike, they make up for with riding gear - Helmets - leathers - gloves, ect. The chances of getting hurt in an accident ARE indeed greater on a bike - however with proper gear, those chances and severity of said injuries can be drastically reduced.

A safe and well trained rider learns from riding, and is able to become an even more aware car driver as well - Motorcycles are extremely dangerous to those who are already Dangerous on the roads and I would NOT advise someone with a bad driving record to get on two wheels. Period.

Some high-vis gear:
Alliance Helmet - Hi-Viz - ICON-ALLIANCE-HI-VIZ (Google Affiliate Ad)
Illuminator Street Backpack - FLY-ILLUMINATOR-BACKPACK (Google Affiliate Ad)
Gel Reflector Glove - Mens - OPA-GEL-REFLECTOR-M (Google Affiliate Ad)
Inceptor Reflective Mesh Vest - Mens Sizes - ICON-INTERCEPTOR-VEST (Google Affiliate Ad)

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