Have you taken any intermediate/advanced riding courses? - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
Riding Proficiency Tips and suggestions for improving the rider's safety skills and riding techniques

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post #1 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 07:33 PM Thread Starter
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Location: at the Gateway to the Sierras, in California
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Have you taken any intermediate/advanced riding courses?

If you have, what were your motivations?
If you haven't, why haven't you?


Be wise, get trained, ride safe.

- Ofir

Proper motorcycle training is like wearing a helmet. You can ride for 30 years without one and make a case that you've never needed it. Until you do ó but then it's too late to make that decision.
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post #2 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 08:25 PM
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No courses yet. I starting riding again last year after 40 yrs away and thought I might try an advanced course (I may still).
What I did do was read a couple of books (David Hough's "Proficient Motorcycling" was very good) and take it slow while getting back into it. I've got about 20,000 miles so far and try to practice safe braking and turning techniques at speed regularly and stay alert and forward looking while riding. Helps to relax and pay attention to what's important on the road.
So far so good.


"Rock bottom will teach you lessons that mountain tops never will..."

2016 V-Strom DL650 (red) 'Sweetness'
2011 V-Strom DL650 (white)

Last edited by Hank122; 03-18-2017 at 08:33 PM.
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post #3 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 08:28 PM
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I was an instructor for the MSF basic and experienced rider courses 30-35 years ago.
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post #4 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 09:00 PM
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No courses.

I'm wary about MISinformation and DISinformation put out there - and armchair experts are everywhere, even in the MSF. I could relate some, but it would erupt into a flame war, and I'm not interested in that.

Let it suffice that I've put upwards of 70,000 miles on two wheels; had one bad wreck which would have been worse if I hadn't instinctively done the right thing. I know ATGATT, and live it about 70 percent of the time - like everyone else. The helmet, to me, is as critical as the ignition key.

I can ride, I can read the road; I can lean, I can look around curves. I know when the deer and the antelope play, and I park it after sundown.

There's always more to learn, but I don't accept someone's advice just because he wears a shirt stenciled EXPERT.
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post #5 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 09:13 PM
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I listen, blind acceptance is not what is required or desired.
Sometimes you have been riding around your individual faults without being aware of them.
I've done the one course around 5 years and doing another next month.
No earth shattering, epiphany style moments but some different perspectives and a greater awareness of the mechanics of the road and the machine that brings me so much pleasure.
Riding 30 years plus, no idea how many k's, there is always something more to learn.
You spend a day doing something that's just plain fun with a group of people that share your enthusiasm, highly recommended great day out.
There's idiots in every field, they never outnumber those that aren't.
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post #6 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 09:20 PM
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I have taken several. Prime reason was I want to be able to practice, in a controlled environment, emergency handling of my bikes. I want to be able to deal with situations on the road as best I can. I think I can only do this if I know how the bike will react to the inputs I need to do this. I need to know how the bike will react to hard braking while leaned way over, emergency braking and simultaneously turning, learning to keep looking at where I want to go rather than what I don't want to hit, how it feels to slide each end, etc etc etc. Yes, you can do all of this on the public roads if you want but I find it much safer to do it on a track and it is especially useful to have someone, who is a better rider than I am, give me tips on how to do it better.

I have 3 different bikes and all 3 handle a bit different so I took them all to the track to learn.

And besides.......it is a whole lot of fun!!!!!

The other thing I do, on a fairly regular basis, is practice. There is a good stretch of road nearby that allows a certain (not extreme) degree of practice. I make it a point ride it as often as I can.
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post #7 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 09:23 PM
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Western Montana
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Good points, all.

I'm not opposed to classes - especialy for n00bs. But given my own experience, both on cycles and with armchair experts...I take it all with a great big cake of salt.
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post #8 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 11:45 PM
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I was young once too and thought I could ride. Many of us here have 5 to 10 times that 70K miles in the saddle. Motorcycle instruction is just like any other instruction, you will only get out of it that which you accept to learn. Many instructors are current or former motor officers, any many others learned from them. Unfortunately, students that attend classes with a know it all attitude tend to learn the least, therefore fueling their position that they don't need a class. Interesting physiology.
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post #9 of 40 Old 03-18-2017, 11:56 PM
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When I learnt to ride back in the 60's there was no such thing as motorcycle instruction. You just learnt by doing it. Now I guess that I have learnt, or fallen into, many bad habits along the way. But, I have never had a crash or dropped a bike so perhaps my bad habits are survivable.

Anyway, I am too stubborn to go and learn, or even find out, that I can do it better, so I will just puddle along and muddle through while I can still enjoy the ride.


Some people are like clouds. When they go away it makes the day seem brighter.

2015 XT.
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post #10 of 40 Old 03-19-2017, 12:41 AM
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Location: San Antonio, TX
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Yes. I took the Lee Parks Total Control course 3 years ago. Money well spent. I wanted to corner better and knew I had much more to learn as a rider. I enjoyed learning from a professional how I could improve my skills and be a safer rider. I think anyone can benefit from one of these courses.
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