Advanced Riding Techniques Blog

Advanced Riding Techniques in Cape Town, South Africa | Learn to ride a motorbike with advanced driving skills.

Born Again Riders...

A few points one might like to consider:

1. False Confidence. Many Born Again riders assume they can pick up where they left off only to discover that they aren’t quite up to the challenge. Even though the skills required to ride hasn’t deserted them, the clever ones decide to get re-trained because they understand that moto-skills are perishable. It makes more sense to do this before you buy the “new” bike.

2. What Size Bike Should I Buy?  Older riders usually have enough financial clout to buy the biggest, fastest machine on the showroom floor. But, a too big, too tall, or too powerful bike can ruin the fun. Smarter riders put their ego aside and opt for a small or middleweight bike that is less likely to intimidate and erode confidence. A smaller bike will also invite fun and provide the opportunity to learn without the stress of having to harness a beast. Also consider a clean late model used bike; better value for money while you get re-accquainted

3. Take a Course. The easiest and best way to get retrained is to take a course. Returning riders might want to consider new rider training to ensure they have the basic skills, but, don’t stop there. Does receiving a course completion card means that they are done learning?? No, that dangerous belief often leads to complacency and inaccurate risk perception. Fatality statistics would improve if more riders saw motorcycling as a lifelong endeavour of learning, practicing and growing. Intermediate or advanced courses at some future point are good to consider.

4. Read:  Skills articles and Books. There are several great books and tons and tons of articles available that describe techniques and strategies for becoming a highly proficient rider. Google “riding a motorcycle at slow speeds”, “stopping a motorcycle in a corner”, or any other technique that has you stumped and you’ll likely get the information you need to become a better rider. Several articles can be found at Advanced Riding Techniques Blog or Facebook page.

5. Gear Up.  Born Agains can experience a tip-over or two as they regain their composure. With this in mind, it’s foolish not to wear protection. Not only will good quality riding gear reduce the chances of injury, it also protects you from the elements and makes riding more comfortable and enjoyable. . Some people may choose not to wear full gear because of image or peer pressure, however Born Agains are usually mature adults who can resist having fashion or the opinions of others influence them.

6. Get With The Program.  You may recall that you were advised to “lay the bike down” and always “avoid the front brake” when experiencing a riding “situation”. These are two examples of redundant techniques older riders still recall when riding today. Only riders who are un-educated in the ways of proper braking would consider these useful in a modern riding environment. In almost every case, it’s better to attempt a quick stop/ swerve rather than tossing your motorcycle to the ground.  Today’s tyres and controllable brakes are capable of safely stopping a motorcycle in a very short distance, but only if the rider knows what to do!.

7. Accurately Perceive Risk. Everyone knows that the risks of riding a two-wheeler are greater than driving in a car. However, a lot of people don’t realize just how risky riding is until they experience a close call or crash. Ride defensively and stay prepared.

8. Check Your Attitude. Returning riders may be more mature, but that doesn’t mean over exuberance and bad judgment won’t creep in from time to time. Risk is reduced significantly when the limits of rider ability and the environment are closely scrutinized and respected. Dare I say it ????; act your age…

All for now..keep it on two wheels

The FIRST? (that I know of) MotoGP inspired Honda RC213V-S to be raced?

I don't know if the picture colour scheme is photo-shopped, but I hope it turns out very similar in the real world.

So like Padgett's to take on a left of centre project..albeit a hugely expensive one...I wish them well..Anyone at the IoM TT will be honoured to see this on the Mountain Course and Bruce Anstey is just the sort of rider to do it justice..John McGuiness, Michael Dunlop et al will have their work cut out if this holds together.. Click on the link for more detail.

I love it...


Worst Driver Occupations...

We all know to be wary of the little old lady driver on her way to the vicarage..Or the old guy with a hat, pipe and scarf..or the white van driver..

Well, some insurer researched the most likely to have accidents occupations...Click to see the worst..and right at the end..those who are better drivers..statistically speaking..ahem..

Decreasing Radius Corners...

It’s one of those heart-in-the-mouth moments when a corner suddenly tightens up and you think you’re running out of cornering clearance and skill to complete the turn. We’ve all had a moment which might have lead to running off  the tar, or into oncoming traffic or low-siding the bike.


Don’t ever get in the situation where a bend surprises you. Pay attention!! If you’ve ridden the road before, you should be aware of the hazards. If your memory deserts you, ride it like a section of road you’ve never ridden before.Observe and change your speed accordingly.

If you understand the concept of a VANISHING POINT where both edges of the road appear to converge (meet) at a point in the distance, then use this concept to ascertain 1) Is this point is getting closer?..Yes,.. then the corner is tightening ..2) if the point is moving away, the corner is opening up giving you the opportunity to open the throttle.

Keep your lean angle and speed neutral (constant) if the VANISHING POINT remains a constant distance away.

If the corner is blind then you may need to look for other clues such as the brake lights of the vehicle in front, overhead lines that suddenly turn or a changing tree, hedge or fence line. DO NOT take it as read the road WILL follow these lines, but cautious use of this technique may help.


If you’ve determined the radius is tightening; position your bike as wide as possible while washing off speed by gearing 1 or 2 down and even-pressured braking ( See Green Line below). A wide approach to the corner will make your apex further around the bend and give you sight of a tightening radius. Staying close to the kerb (Red Line) is a recipe for disaster.  This is NOT a racetrack..adopting a racing block pass line is useful at keeping your competitors at bay, but not recommended for road use..which is where you are.

Keep looking where you want to the VANISHING POINT. Don’t look at the other side of the road or the bushes where you think you might end up … or you will.


Even so, you might still get caught out by long bends that tighten unexpectedly toward the end, so you may need to make some mid-corner corrections. Hold the throttle neutrally or slightly decrease it.

It’s too late for downshifting; unless you are really smooth at matching engine and road spees as the rear wheel may lock up and flick you over the side. Also the front/rear balance of the bike will be upset as you chop/change..much better to concentrate on…

…….gently pushing a little more on the inside handlebar. This is a counter-steering input that will lean your bike further and give you the opportunity to “survive” the corner. You’ll be surprised how far you can lean the bike without sliding or falling off or how little effort is required to tighten a line.

I am very fond of using a gentle press of the rear brake: This pulls the bike into the corner .Don’t touch the front brakes , as most of us grab the lever too hard… which may cause a low-side or stand the bike up again and send you and it off into the bushes or oncoming traffic.

If you’ve overcommitted and have run out of ground clearance, (which is entirely possible on Cruisers ) …….

One way out is to smoothly squeeze more front and rear brake to slow you down as much as possible while keeping your lean angle stable.   Or, it is possible to stand the bike up, smoothly brake and put some bodyweight  on the inside ( bit like the racers do..) .........and......IF you keep looking at the corner exit (VANISHING POINT) , without you realising you will apply counter steering and you just may wash off enough speed to make it around the corner. Modern tyres have more “stick” than we think and unless the road is seriously lacking in grip, a little thought, a little action, and we come out the other side, shaken but not stirred..

I will post a video of some cornering techniques with another blog a moving picture is easier to understand than a thousand words...In the Advanced Riding Techniques for more tips and techniques.

Stay Upright and on Two Wheels..Always.

C ot A and an 1199R Ducati Panigale

Circuit of the Americas...I'm a big fan of that circuit..( so is Marc Marquez it seems! ) it reminds me of the ups and downs at Kyalami..add to that a Ducati 1199R ( ok, I'm also a Ducati Fan..) and this video, while not new, is a perfect way to show both..


I'm sure it's considered a boring subject : ....Tyres (Tick) Round (Tick) Black (Tick)..and that's where it stops for far too many riders.

Those round black things are THE most important item you need to consider and take care of.

Without them you are going nowhere..They hold the bike up off the rims, they deal with the acceleration from the twist of the throttle, the grab of the brake and accept your inputs to make the whole lot go round corners.

Do you pay attention? Do you consider the pressures, the condition and even whether the type of tyre is right for your machine?

When you buy a new bike ( ha..a pipe dream for a lot of us..) the original fitments are considered carefully by the manufacturers.. eventually the type and optimum pressures are put in that handbook  and the buck firmly passed on the moment we leave the showroom. Pirelli or Bridgestone or any other reputable manufacturer don't spend millions on tyre design just because, they want to offer the best tyre for the bike within the budget. Kawaskai or Yamaha or any manufacturer want to show their product in the best light, so the tyre choice and specs are a major consideration and any changes....well that's now in your hands..

While some tyre reports are subjective about grip or the feelings they relay to the rider, any deviations from Day 1 reflect in our opinions. Work with the pressures too high or too low, the levels of grip disappear, not to mention the rand and cents as they wear of quicker than designed to. Tyres have a "Goldilocks" pressure range when the trade off between wear and grip are just right..Even if you don't do the check daily, at least once a week will show whether you have the following problem.

If you don't inspect the tyres for road detritus caught in the tread, or small cuts in the sidewall, these can escalate very quickly..the easy one to forsee being left at the side of the road with a puncture, the worst, calling 082 911.

Once the brand new tyres wear down, there's nothing to stop the rider fitting the wrong type of tyre, though hopefully a reputable tyre shop should not allow that, but ultimately the rider makes the choice..e.g. My KLE500 was purchased with a real road biased tyre on the front and a semi off-road at the rear. Apart from the funny "feel" there was no grip at the front once leaving was something I rectified on Day 1.

Ladies and Gents..Go outside now and look and check both tyres...If you're not sure about whether the type is correct for your machine, make an effort to speak to a tyre retailer or importer. They can also give you recommended pressures if they are not the same make as fitted when the bike and handbook were untouched by human hand.. Do it regularly, please..your life could depend on it..

For more information, and riding tips...go to advanced riding techniques..and rubber down,,bubble up..

If Only.....

How much more respect and adherance to the traffic laws would one get if our police behaved like this...

As a shorty myself...

It's important to feel comfortable on a bike...most of us feel most ( at risk of a photo opportunity ) when coming to a halt..

The need to have both feet down is something in the mind, and if you can get your mind around the thought, it's ok to only put down tip-toes; just one foot is actually best...but you'd need me to prove exactly why, so contact me Advanced Riding Techniques.

In the interim, here are some great machines, with a lower seat height, just for the vertically challenged amongst us...and I include me in that group.