How to Choose a Motorcycle Training Class

How To Choose A Motorcycle Class

Washington State has two state-approved motorcycle basic rider education curriculums.  One is through the Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) and the other is the Motorcycle Education Program (MEP), which Bret wrote for Puget Sound Safety.  There are some major differences between the two curricula: The MSF courses are formulaic, structured, and linear while the MEP courses are flexible, adaptable, and offer students the opportunity to self-correct.  In addition, the MEP course have increased student volume by 25%.  To best choose a class, choose the one that supports your particular learning style.

Guest:  Kevin Tusler has embarked on his second career; from retiring as the vice president for a project management company to a full-time motorcycle instructor.

Discussion Points:
1.  Why doesn’t Bret teach advanced classes?
2.  What should I look for in a motorcycle training school?
3.  Does the student/instructor ratio of the motorcycle training class matter?

Key Takeaways:
– How are people supposed to improve if they don’t know what the goal is?
– If you understand why you were successful, then you can replicate that success in the future.
– People underestimate the value of humor while learning.

Evergreen Safety Council
Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF)

Motorcycle Education Program

What to Expect as a New ADV Rider

What can you expect as a new ADV rider?

Many people who first start riding ADV bikes can credit their knowledge to riding dirt bikes as a child.  But what if this is the first time you’ve ridden anything in the dirt?  Learning what to expect as a new adventure rider is a subject that few instructors address.

Australian rider, Robert Malpas, is a recent convert into the ADV world and he has some excellent insight into what beginning dirt riders think and feel when they’re getting used to a new terrain under their tires.

Editor’s Error:  Several references are made towards Class 3 riders, including discussion on rookie, transitional, and proficient riders.  This refers to the Adventure Skill Rating System which serves to identify your skill level on different terrain.

Discussion Points:
1.  What can I expect when I first ride off-road?
2.  What ideas are there for improving my fitness?
3.  What ADV gear should I buy?
4.  What advice do you have for improving my ADV skill level?

Key Takeaways:
If you’re new, expect to hear a lot of advice but consider the source.
Look for a common theme from reputable people.
Expect to be uncomfortable with motorcycle movements.
Be open to spending more on safety gear than your motorcycle (watch this video!).
Be open to the idea that you may need other people around just in case.

Adventure Skill Rating System

Are You Miscalculating your ADV Skills?

Are you Miscalculating your adv skills?

Paul Solomonson, dueling counterpart in the recent video “Mosko Moto vs Lone Rider“, talks with Bret about rating yourself as an ADV rider and some of the common ways riders miscalculate their skill level.

Paul Solomonson works with Bret across the United States in teaching ADV training classes.  He is also a state-certified motorcycle and driving instructor and has taught advanced motorcycle skills in the Military Mentor Training courses for the U.S. Army.

Editor’s Note: There may be a couple obscenities scattered throughout, but they were worth keeping in.

Discussion Points:
1.  How good am I as an ADV rider?
2.  How difficult is a particular trail?
3.  How do I rate my skills?
4.  Are faster people better than I am at riding?
5.  What does “Experts Only” mean and if I survive it, am I an expert?

Key Takeaways:
–  Don’t find the limits of your bike while you’re on a trip
–  Those who shouldn’t be giving advice are often the first ones to do so
–  Having to be honest with yourself is one of the hardest things to do

References Made in the Podcast:
Adventure Skill Rating System

Lone Rider Motobags vs Mosko Moto Backcountry Panniers
Learn at Home

Top Tips for Adventure Camping

Top Tips for Adventure Camping

You don’t need to travel far and wide to be an ADV motorcyclist, nor do you need to travel with an expensive motorcycle.  Adventuring is about travel, discovering, and wandering, and these tips will help make your next adventure smoother.

Is Motorcycle Safety Training a Myth?

Does Motorcycle Training Create Safer Riders?

Does motorcycle safety training really teach what it’s intended to teach?  In this episode, Bret Tkacs speaks with Chris Johnson, owner of Washington Motorist Safety Training, about whether motorcycle safety education is real or a myth.  Does training actually make safer riders?  Enjoy this dynamic podcast where two energetic personalities discuss rider skill vs. rider behavior, the culture of riding, and the need to be able to make mistakes.

For more reading, look through Art Friedman’s article on the effectiveness of motorcycle training.  Also, watch Bret’s talk in New Zealand on why motorcyclists crash. 

What’s Going On With Jesse Luggage?

What's GOING ON WITH Jesse Luggage?

Jesse Luggage is now owned by Jared Maxfield who is revitalizing the brand into Jesse Adventures: a one-stop resource for the ADV community.  In this podcast, Bret and Jared discuss what it’s like being one of the few hard pannier distributors in the United States, the competition in the ADV luggage market, and the pros and cons of putting hard panniers onto your ADV bike.  If you’ve never heard of Jesse Luggage or you’re a diehard fan, this is a podcast to listen to!