Bad Motorcycle Advice: 6 Riding Tips You Should Ignore

Whether you’re just starting out or have been riding forever, you’re going to encounter know-it-all motorcyclists who feel the need to share all of their favorite tips and tricks. Some of their recommendations may be valuable, but others will only increase your risks. From the simply stupid to the extremely dangerous, certain pieces of motorcycle advice should never be followed. Be sure you’re not listening to, or sharing, these “words of wisdom.”

6 Riding Tips You Should Ignore

1. “You don’t need to wear gear if you learn to ride correctly.”

Understanding and practicing safe riding strategies may help reduce your odds of being involved in a crash, but there will always be numerous threats outside of your control. Sun glare, sudden changes in weather or road conditions and distracted drivers, to name a few. At the very least, you should always wear a helmet, but a full suit of gear is never a bad idea.

2. “You only had __ drink(s). You’re definitely okay to ride.”

While it’s true each person feels the effects of alcohol at a different rate, your ability to control your motorcycle begins to deteriorate after your first drink. You may not think you’re making mistakes, but it’s more likely you’re just not noticing them. Nearly one-third [LINK] of fatal motorcycle crashes involve an impaired rider, so don’t take your chances. Always arrange for alternative transportation if you plan on drinking.

3. “You’re buying your first bike? You should get a…”

Unless these words are coming out of the mouth of a professional, it’s probably in your best interest to ignore them. No two motorcyclists have the exact same build, and there’s no “starter bike” that’s a perfect fit for every rider. Sure, bikes with smaller engines are preferable for beginners, but the size of engine and bike you need and can handle will vary with your height, weight and other physical features.

4. “Denim makes great riding gear.”

False. Just ask Wes Siler. [Click at your own risk. Article contains injury photos]

Denim, or any street clothes for that matter, will shred the second you hit the pavement. The only exceptions are reinforced denim products designed specifically for motorcyclists. These jackets and pants are often also equipped with body armor to better protect the wearer in a crash.

5. “You’re better off without a helmet.”

Whether the advice-giver claims helmets restrict your vision, limit your hearing or increase your risk of breaking your neck, these are all myths and excuses riders use to justify their refusal to wear a helmet. As you’ve heard time and time again, you should be wearing a helmet every time you get on your bike, period.

6. “If you’re a skilled rider, you’ll be able to react safely in any situation.”

The sense of invincibility that accompanies this statement makes it one of the most dangerous pieces of advice on the list. If you truly believe you’ll be able to react to any threat that comes your way, you’re much more likely to take part in risky behaviors or carry out dangerous maneuvers on the road. Instead of banking on your skills to get you out of dangerous situations, strive to avoid the scenarios in the first place by practicing safe riding strategies.

What’s the worst motorcycle advice you’ve ever received? Share below.

2 comments on “Bad Motorcycle Advice: 6 Riding Tips You Should Ignore

  1. Two items come to mind. Point 1-I’ve been riding for (fill in the amount)years, I don’t need ABS. And, a parallel thought-I knew I couldn’t stop in time, so I laid her down…..Ouch.

  2. If you are riding your Harley and you see another motorcycle coming up behind you, pull over as far as you can to the left and don’t let anyone pass you!

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