10 Motorcycle Safety Tips for First-Time Motorcycle Riders

Written by Delia Berry on July 7th, 2017. Posted in Honda

Motorcycles are cool and they give riders a bigger rush as opposed to cars, that’s undeniable. Unfortunately, while the motorcycle might be cool and the ride might be filled with adrenaline, it’s a far more dangerous transportation method. Unlike when you’re in the car, when riding the motorcycle, your body is completely exposed and even a small accident can cause major harm. As a first-time motorcycle rider, you need to be aware of all the safety rules and precautions that you must take in order to stay safe and not hurt yourself. To aid you, we have rounded up the 10 most important safety tips that you, as a beginner, must follow in order to enjoy riding the bike safely.
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#1 – Always Wear a Helmet

Not only as a beginner but as an expert motorcyclist, you have to wear a helmet at all times. A hard, quality helmet can make the difference between life and death in the unfortunate event of an accident as it shields your head against a violent impact with the road’s surface. Modern helmets even provide more than just protection, making the ride more pleasurable as they come with innovative features such as integrated Bluetooth that allows communication between riders and MP3 connectivity. Basically, Bluetooth motorcycle helmets provide safety while making the ride more enjoyable, so spice up the whole experience by wearing this type of protective gear.

#2 – Inspect the Ride Before Taking Off

What you must do before you even dare get on the motorcycle is to fully inspect it to see if anything’s wrong. What you should check out each and every time you want to go for a ride are the mirrors, the lights, the pressure in the tires, and the bolts. It’s best that you take it for a short ride in front of your house to see if it’s leaking or there are mechanical hazards that might endanger you. Also, make sure that you don’t skip on routine maintenance and care. If everything is in check, then you can safely take off.
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#3 – Wear the Appropriate Gear

Another vital safety element that you mustn’t ignore is to wear the right gear when you’re on the motorcycle. While you might think that you’d look cool riding the bike in jeans, a white T-shirt, and your favorite pair of sneakers, this is a sure recipe for disaster. The gear that you wear has the role of protecting you against debris, bugs, cold weather and wind. Also, it should protect you against road rash in the event that you slide out of the motorcycle. To make sure that you’re fully protected by the gear you’re wearing, go with leather or reinforced jacket, gloves, over-the-ankle footwear, and full pants. It might get hot and steamy during summer when you’ll ride on the road wearing the gear, but safety is the top priority so you have to make this sacrifice.

#4 – Don’t Overestimate Yourself

As a first-timer, you need to be humble about your skill set and not impress others by trying to pull off any type of stunts that you’re not ready for as disaster is 100% likely to occur. Also, you should be careful about the speed that you ride at, keeping it at a legal level or preferably lower in order to ensure that you’ll be able to avoid obstacles without losing control of the motorcycle and that you won’t get into a nasty accident caused by speeding either.
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#5 – Avoid Road Hazards

Riding the motorcycle is a completely different experience than riding the car as you have less contact with the pavement when you’re on it. This means that the smallest of obstacles, such as pebbles, wet leaves, or sand can be hazardous for you, causing accidents. As opposed to when you’re in the car when riding the motorcycle you need to be extra careful and watch out for road hazards such as bumps and potholes as they pose a serious danger. If you have noticed them too late and can’t avoid the hazards, slow down as much as you can to minimize the effect of the accident.

#6 – Don’t Fully Rely on the Mirrors

While it’s true that you should keep your eyes on the road at all times with you’re on the motorcycle, paying extra attention to what’s ahead of you, there are situations where you’ll have to take break contact with the road temporarily. This is required when you’re about to change lanes, not being recommended that you rely fully on the mirrors as they might not show you the complete view of what’s behind you. Thus, when you want to switch lanes, turn your head and look over your shoulder to check if other vehicles aren’t approaching and if it’s alright to make the change.
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#7 – Don’t Let Your Mind Stray

Your emotions have a bigger impact than you could ever imagine on the ride. They represent one of the main reasons why motorcycle accidents occur in the first place, riders losing focus as their minds stray from the road. If you’re feeling angry, sad, or distracted, take a break before you get on the bike and cool off. Your head needs to be clear and you mustn’t let emotions overwhelm you when riding it as your attention is fully needed on the road ahead.

#8 – Avoid Taking Passengers On the Ride

Yes, it might sound awesome to take a friend with you when you’re riding the bike, but as a beginner, you can’t master the motorcycle too well yet, so you might not handle the situation probably, risking an accident. A passenger can be a real problem for beginners as they feel less comfortable when riding. Also, there’s the added stress that inevitably intervenes when you realize that you are directly responsible for that person, stress that instead of making you focus better on the road might actually end up causing you to freak out and do a mistake that could lead to an accident.
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#9 – Avoid Riding When the Weather Is Bad

What you need to avoid at all costs as a first-timer is riding in poor weather conditions. If it’s raining or snowing, you shouldn’t get on the motorcycle at all. Also, if it rained recently and the road is still wet, you must decrease the speed and ride slow as the slippery conditions can cause an accident to happen easily. Also, the slippery surface will make it hard for you to cut corners correctly, so it’s best that you avoid sudden maneuvers altogether if you have to ride the motorcycle at that moment and you can’t delay the trip.

#1 0 – Keep a Safe Distance In Traffic

Unfortunately, studies have shown that car drivers are responsible for 60% of collisions involving cars and motorcycles. This means that you, as a beginner motorcyclist, have to be very defensive about the way you drive. What you must do is to keep a safe distance from cars as other traffic participants might not pay attention to your presence and step on the breaks hard, causing you to impact their cars with the motorcycle. Also, always keep an eye out for cars that switch lanes or pull out from side streets as you are the one who is in more danger in case of a collision.