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Discussion Starter #1
first, as i've posted in other threads, when i decided several months ago to get myself a bike (after dreaming of one since i was probably 4 years old), i didn't feel like taking the MSF course for no reason other then the times it was offered, i've read almost every book i can find, and i've even talked (and ridden with) the guys that teach the MSF course here, i guess maybe that counts as private lessons, anyway - i'm not an idiot, and i don't do stupid things... the first thing i did was take the bike to a parking lot every day, for several hours a day, and make absolutely sure i knew how to handle everything, i hadn't had any problems (this was on the 954), now the dad makes me get an older bike, which is cool, i actually like the 95 900rr better, so i miss putting my foot down quick enough the other day, bike isn't completely stopped, i stumble a few times, and the bike tips over, scratches the crank case cover a little, no big deal - didn't even think much of it, picked it up, babied my pinky finger (it hurt), and got back on the bike - but now i find myself constantly nervous every time i start to slow down, and even worse - take off's are a B!TCH now, everytime i put it in first and start to accelerate it feels like reaching your hand in the cookie jar before dinner and that feeling in your back that your mom is about to strike you down with the force of god, ever happen to anyone?... maybe i need to go back to the parking lot and have at it again.. i don't really know, any ideas? (besides taking the MSF course, that won't be offered again until next year)
 

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whem i very first bought my bike i had it parked and had the strearing head lock on and i forgot about it. i was getting my bike inspected at the time and i had to move it. So i think we know how this story goes. None the less it went over and scared the ever living crap out of me. It scratched the side alil bit and it cut the back of my leg not too bad but it hurt. I was scared crap less from there on. It took a while for me to get respect for my bike and not too be scared of it. I sat there in my garage looking at my bike and all i was thinking was maybye i should sell it and buy a cage cause these things are really dangerous, but then i thought about why i bought my bike how much i love riding and how in such a short time this became a part of my life that i would never want too give up. Just give it time and take it easy the first few weeks are scary to get back on and go but if you love riding as much as i do this is only a small step in your way and a very easy one to get over. I think just about every one here has had some problem when they first started some more serious than others. Just pick your self up by the boot straps and get back on slowly but surely is the answer. If all else fails just ride your bike up and down your street till you become more comfortable on your bike. Dont get down on your self and ride safe

later...
Ron
 

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from the sound of it the MSF would help, but ultimately it's your self confidence. Assuming that you want to ride and are not doing because it seemed like a good idea at the time, then get back into the parking lot and practice. You used to be able take off smoothly, so you can do it again. Believe in yourself, don't let things grow out of all proportion, it isn't rocket science. You need to regain your coordination and your confidence. Just do it!

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
UFO said:
The best thing to do (once you have the basics down) is to GET OUT OF TOWN and get the bike one some backroads. Learning to ride in town is the most unsafe thing you can do IMO. No better way to learn than to go riding...just take an experienced person with you.

the parking lot i'm talking about is the size of texas, and outside of an abandoned building, i'm not talking about riding around in a parking lot with soccer mom's and 6 y/o's running around, and i just don't get it.. now every single take off i have is rough... i can't decide whether to try to start with one foot up or leave both feet down until i get a good roll going, and it always seems like i can't get a smooth roll going now either, i go from a stop to 30mph, it's just weird now (maybe it was the same before but now i'm scared of it), and now even today i'm noticing i'm freaking about alot of little stuff, like with stopping i'm having the feet thing too, can't decide whether to let the bike come to a complete stop and then put my feet down, or put my foot down right befoer it stops.. jesus, what's up with me?.. am i going schizophrenic?.. wait who said that.. anyway.. like i was laying in bed trying to sleep and all i could think about was freaking about parking at this girl jenna's house, she has a hill of a driveway, and i kept freaking about how my bike was going to roll down it after i parked, when i know all i have to do is angle it, or duh - drive all the way to the top of it.. anyway... am i just being paranoid now because i've made a stupid mistake?... or am i freaking about legitimate things?
 

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Would you just relax!!!!

cmd954 said:



the parking lot i'm talking about is the size of texas, and outside of an abandoned building, i'm not talking about riding around in a parking lot with soccer mom's and 6 y/o's running around, and i just don't get it.. now every single take off i have is rough... i can't decide whether to try to start with one foot up or leave both feet down until i get a good roll going, and it always seems like i can't get a smooth roll going now either, i go from a stop to 30mph, it's just weird now (maybe it was the same before but now i'm scared of it), and now even today i'm noticing i'm freaking about alot of little stuff, like with stopping i'm having the feet thing too, can't decide whether to let the bike come to a complete stop and then put my feet down, or put my foot down right befoer it stops.. jesus, what's up with me?.. am i going schizophrenic?.. wait who said that.. anyway.. like i was laying in bed trying to sleep and all i could think about was freaking about parking at this girl jenna's house, she has a hill of a driveway, and i kept freaking about how my bike was going to roll down it after i parked, when i know all i have to do is angle it, or duh - drive all the way to the top of it.. anyway... am i just being paranoid now because i've made a stupid mistake?... or am i freaking about legitimate things?
You have to calm down and quit being so hard on yourself. I don't know you from Adam, but you seem to have a lot of anxieties, and you are blowing this thing way out of proportion. There is not a motorcyclist that I know...several hundred...who has been able to purchase his first bike at age 2 and ride for 30 something years without ever...ever...ever making a mistake! You are human just like the rest of us, and will have to learn some lessons the hard way. Do not let fear prevent you from doing what you enjoy. Practice every chance you get and do not be afraid of failure. More importantly, if you do not relax then your chances of dropping the bike and hurting yourself are even greater. Motorcycles react to every single bit of input you give them. Tense muscles, white knuckle grip on the handle bars, squeezing a dent into the gas tank with your knees, tense elbows, and joints all prevent the fluid motion necessary to control a bike properly. Take the MSF course, practice every chance you get, find a role model..someone with a lot of riding time, and above all relax...if you find yourself exhausted, aching, and frowning then you are missing the whole point of riding.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Re: Would you just relax!!!!

maley2000 said:


You have to calm down and quit being so hard on yourself. I don't know you from Adam, but you seem to have a lot of anxieties, and you are blowing this thing way out of proportion. There is not a motorcyclist that I know...several hundred...who has been able to purchase his first bike at age 2 and ride for 30 something years without ever...ever...ever making a mistake! You are human just like the rest of us, and will have to learn some lessons the hard way. Do not let fear prevent you from doing what you enjoy. Practice every chance you get and do not be afraid of failure. More importantly, if you do not relax then your chances of dropping the bike and hurting yourself are even greater. Motorcycles react to every single bit of input you give them. Tense muscles, white knuckle grip on the handle bars, squeezing a dent into the gas tank with your knees, tense elbows, and joints all prevent the fluid motion necessary to control a bike properly. Take the MSF course, practice every chance you get, find a role model..someone with a lot of riding time, and above all relax...if you find yourself exhausted, aching, and frowning then you are missing the whole point of riding.
i know what you mean and that's part of the reason i don't see what the problem is, riding is my DREAM (seriously), and i was in LOVE with it before it ever even happened, i scrape the bike by accident and now i'm having a miserable time, what happened?.. i just didn't know if anyone else has ever scared themselves out of a good time..
 

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I know what you're going through. June 30th I totaled by 02 600F4i as a result of riding a little to fast and lots of construction sand on a curve in the road. No injuries other than a slight wrist twist.

July 31st I had a near miss with a driver of a car who wanted to get through a red before me and cut me off, causing me to dump my new 02 CBR954RR. Bike landed on my angle and I'm limping around looking at the bike in the garage with the damage parts removed waiting for replacements.

After the first incident, I was a little scared to get back on. I did. After all, I'm doing something I love and I figured next time I just have to be more careful.

This incident, after getting the bike home and throwing all my gear around because I was pissed about the guy running me off the road and not stopping, I told myself I wouldn't ride again. Just fix it and sell it.

That lasted only a few moments. I will ride again. I just love it too much, and why should I quit because of someone else's decision (even though if the wife had it her way, I would never have a bike in the first place -- she's still not talking to me because I refuse to quit).

Sure, I'll probably be hesitant when I get back on, but I know it will pass. Just keep in mind that if you're constantly thinking about the bad, it will probably happen. Just get back on the "horse" and ride it. Don't question yourself because if you do, you're better off not getting back on. If you're having problems, such as you are when getting started, relax, think about it and smooth it out.

It might just be that the "injury" you have is thinking about how your new motorcycle got a scratch. That first scratch is hard to deal with and you try to do everything humanly possible to keep it from happening again. Tell me, does that new car you bought way back whenever have a perfect body today? Same thing. Different Mindset, that's all.

Best of luck and I do hope you're able to keep riding after all this.
 

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Re: Re: Would you just relax!!!!

cmd954 said:


i know what you mean and that's part of the reason i don't see what the problem is, riding is my DREAM (seriously), and i was in LOVE with it before it ever even happened, i scrape the bike by accident and now i'm having a miserable time, what happened?.. i just didn't know if anyone else has ever scared themselves out of a good time..
I have been involved in two serious bike accidents. I have over 20 broken bones, numerous spraines, road rash, surgical scars, seperated joints etc...etc...etc, and I still ride. I have "Flash backs" from time to time and even when I ride. I have to tell myself that this is just a fear and overide the whole thought process in my head before it starts to interfere with my performance. The more often you confront your demons, and replace fear with knowledge and experience...then the more often you will see them fade away. Great riders are not born..they are made from years of trial and error, schooling, and road/track time.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
saphelps said:

It might just be that the "injury" you have is thinking about how your new motorcycle got a scratch. That first scratch is hard to deal with and you try to do everything humanly possible to keep it from happening again. Tell me, does that new car you bought way back whenever have a perfect body today? Same thing. Different Mindset, that's all.
The thing i don't get is why i'm worrying about it in the first place, sure - it's scratched, sucks but whatever, i don't really care (i don't particularly want it to happen again, but i'm not killing kittens over it), and you're right - in retrospect, when i first got my car you didn't touch the steering wheel if you weren't me, and now it's got more scrapes from bottoming out and slamming on brakes, jesus.. that's a whole story on it's own (let's not even talk about throwing undercarriage lights out from under the car from sharp turns and body roll).. anyway.. i don't see why i'm scared of my bike now, i'm not scared to die (no really, i'm not.. at all), so it's not really physical injury i'm scared of.. i think i'm just scared of not being able to do it, even though i know i can... i get the same feeling everytime i get on my bike that i do when i see a girl that's so hot that i can't even get up the nuts to go and say hi to her, it makes me angry... heh
 

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sounds like you need practice - long

You are freaking out over what should be and will become second nature through practice. That big empty parking lot is your friend. It sounds like you can use it to practive all sorts of things. You don't want to drop your bike again and that's a good thing. Build up your confidence with successes and you'll be off and running again doing better than before.

The first thing to practice is starting and stopping in a straight line. I'm assuming you can get both feet down on the ground when stopped. Set yourself up with lots of clear space in front of you. Practice starting off, accelerating to maybe 20mph (in first) and slowing then stopping all with your feet off the pegs (carefully so you don't catch your foot on anything). You should get to the point that your feet come down just as you stop. Do this for 1/2 hour or until it feels natural. This will also help develop throttle control at slow speeds.

Next put your feet on the pegs as you accelerate, leave them there as you slow down, and put them down on the ground just as you stop. Do this until you feel comfortable and natural. You need to build one set of skills on top of the more basic. If you aren't yet totally comfortable with the basics, the next steps could easily throw you off. Next accelerate a little more and shift into second then slow and stop. After mastering starting and stopping on flat ground in a straigh line, try doing it while turning slightly, then add hills (may be difficult in a parking lot). Putting both feet down is best at first. It's easy to lose your balance with only one foot down. Starting off from a stop going up hill was a challenge for me at first. After practice, I got the hang of steadying the bike with only my left foot, applying the rear brake with my right foot, letting off the front brake, getting on the gas a little, letting out the clutch, more gas, and releasing the rear brake all in a smooth motion. Doing that on an uphill slope that also falls off to the left is a further challenge. You need to think through what you need to do and set yourself up in the best possible condition to do what will come next. That comes with *lots* of practice.

If the parking lot has aisles, islands or something, you can set up a mental course to use for these kinds of drills. If not, you might want to get some small cones to use. The MSF course is 2 days of this type of drill in a large, safe area with instruction and evaluation of course. You know it's a good idea, but sounds like it's too far off. Do your best to put yourself through the same type of skill development. If you have friends that teach MSF, see if they'll outline what they cover or better yet can you convince one of them to work with you for a few hours in the parking lot?

Once you have mastered these basic skills, the girl's driveway with a hill will seem less intimidating. Good luck!!
 

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From the above thread & posts -----

----now you can see why so many of us, with lots of experience, suggest one start out on a smaller & lighter bike without a pile of plastics on it. Come to think of it in the MSF courses one is not handed a bike with around 100hp, awkward to handle & requires slipping of the clutch to take off!!!!!!
Amazing what one can do with a 125 or 250 bike suitable for road or dual purpose use.
Above all the lightness of the bikes, the easy of handeling & the lack of rocket ship power is part of the reason these are soo good to learn on. Still who ever listens to us?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Re: From the above thread & posts -----

Smitty said:
----now you can see why so many of us, with lots of experience, suggest one start out on a smaller & lighter bike without a pile of plastics on it. Come to think of it in the MSF courses one is not handed a bike with around 100hp, awkward to handle & requires slipping of the clutch to take off!!!!!!
Amazing what one can do with a 125 or 250 bike suitable for road or dual purpose use.
Above all the lightness of the bikes, the easy of handeling & the lack of rocket ship power is part of the reason these are soo good to learn on. Still who ever listens to us?

I was waiting for a reply like that Smitty, I knew it was only a matter of time. I know that it might be hard for someone to understand that someone might actually be able to restrain themselves when it comes to riding a sport bike, obviously people that suggest starting with smaller bikes because they have too much power have problems restraining themselves. I have never had a problem with the bike having too much power, and now that I think of it - I've also never even attempted to max it out - believe it or not, I'm not that stupid, and my reason for not starting off with a 125 or 250 bike is that i want to keep this bike until it doesn't run anymore, i unlike alot of people don't want to buy a new biek every year, not every 5 years, hell i'll keep it for 20 if it still runs decent, to suggest that my current problems are from the power of the bike is, for lack of any less-abrasive words - plain stupid, i'm not scared of how powerful it is, i'm scared of making retarded mistakes, which can be done on more things then a sport bike mind you. I knew when I posted it would only be a matter of time until someone suggested I get a different bike, so anyway - point taken - you are god almighty and because you have been riding longer, you know more then me not only about bikes, but also about everything in general - please forgive my ignorance and my inability to make size decisions for myself.
 

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cmd954 said:
but now i find myself constantly nervous every time i start to slow down, and even worse - take off's are a B!TCH now, everytime i put it in first and start to accelerate it feels like reaching your hand in the cookie jar before dinner and that feeling in your back that your mom is about to strike you down with the force of god, ever happen to anyone?...
That happens to everyone. It even happens to me anytime I have a crash and I have been riding for 20+ years. Some people just get over it a little faster than others. Nothing wrong with it, just take your time and enjoy your ride. The nervousness will fade in time, but the good thing is that you will aways remember what happened and be more prepared for it if it ever happens again.
 

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I'm certainly no expert rider either and I dropped my first bike (2000 Sportster) when i was doing maybe 5 miles an hour. I just hit some deep grave at the wrong angle and down I went. No damage to me or the bike, but... The one thing you may want to consider is getting a smaller bike. Not saying you can't handle a 900RR, but it seems your problem is mental. It's a fast bike, and I know that little voice in my head would let me know it every time I rode. Perhaps you could get something like an older Nighthawk, or an SV650. They're both nice bikes and very maintenance friendly. Whatever you do, don't give up on riding! Riding is the best thing I've ever decided to do, and I started at 26. Bottom line is just relax and enjoy yourself. You're just thinking too much. Anyway, regardless of what you decide, I wish you all the luck. Oh, by the way, take the MSF course. It's a great way to find out about yourself and, if you take the advanced course, your bike. It's very controlled and they give you confidence without cockiness.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
trigger said:
I'm certainly no expert rider either and I dropped my first bike (2000 Sportster) when i was doing maybe 5 miles an hour. I just hit some deep grave at the wrong angle and down I went. No damage to me or the bike, but... The one thing you may want to consider is getting a smaller bike. Not saying you can't handle a 900RR, but it seems your problem is mental. It's a fast bike, and I know that little voice in my head would let me know it every time I rode. Perhaps you could get something like an older Nighthawk, or an SV650. They're both nice bikes and very maintenance friendly. Whatever you do, don't give up on riding! Riding is the best thing I've ever decided to do, and I started at 26. Bottom line is just relax and enjoy yourself. You're just thinking too much. Anyway, regardless of what you decide, I wish you all the luck. Oh, by the way, take the MSF course. It's a great way to find out about yourself and, if you take the advanced course, your bike. It's very controlled and they give you confidence without cockiness.
I understand peoples reasons for saying this - but i'll try to make it very clear before anyone gets to know me (even though i'll be gone in october) I DON'T WANT A SMALLER BIKE, i am a BIG guy, i am also a strong guy (not conceited or anything), this bike is not heavy to me, and i've been on smaller bikes, i don't like the way they feel, the extra poundage of a bigger bike makes me feel more in control, little bikes feel like toys and i think i'm going to break them, the little voice in my head doesn't like to remind me that it's fast, it likes to spend most of it's time on things like "i'm hungry" and "heh heh... those are some tight jeans"... i don't really have a conscience when it comes to my physical well being, i guess that's a good thing sometimes, i never had that little bell go off in my head that said "if there's a fire under the pot, the pot is hot, do not touch it", my little voice said "heh heh... fire.. fire.. fire!"
 

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I think the post-crash jitters come from the way your mind thinks about your bike vs. your car. If you have a slight accident in a car, that leaves a few scratches, you really don't change your driving habits much.

I think it's because the car is transportation. It's a way to haul people around, groceries, etc. The bike, however, is your livelyhood (at least for me.) It's a hobby, a sport, and a lover all rolled into one. That's why you can't bear the idea of hurting her. (My bike's name is Maria)

When you put a scratch on your bike, it's putting a scratch on something you probably spend infinately more time on than your car. And that hurts.

just MHO. I have a few scratches on my baby, and looking at them pains me. (That's why I am saving for a new Eurotail hehehe)

It's like breast implants for a bike

James
 

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Discussion Starter #18
some guys from just about 2 hours away came to grab a part from me (of course for free), talk about sexual healing... 3 honda's (929, 900rr, and i'm not even sure what the third was, i was staring at the yellow on the 929 the whole time), really made me think i was a dumbass (for being worried about whatever i am) especially when they took off.. blah, anyway, i'm going to go do something, i dunno what
 

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Just to clarify things, I did not hit a deep grave. I wasn't riding in a graveyard. It was gravel. Anyway, if you want to keep the big bike, that's cool. Just don't give up on it. You'll regret it later.
 

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I think you need balance practice in general. Try balancing on a narrorw beam, or practice riding a bike AS SLOWLY AS YOU CAN!!
Balance and flexibility are the keys to life, not just riding..Give it a try and see how you do..P.S. do you STRETCH BEFORE you ride???
I've REALLY been doing my daily stretches, and my riding confidence has NEVER been better. Hope this helps you out.
Jimmy G
 
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