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 Safe ATV and Motorcycle riding tips! 
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Joined: 12 Sep 2008, 14:04
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Post Safe ATV and Motorcycle riding tips!
Riding Different Types of Terrain One of the most thrilling—and challenging—aspects of off-road riding is learning how to tackle different kinds of trails. Here are some of the most common:

DIRT
Hardpack. Loose silt. Dry lakes. Tacky clay. Probably the most common terrain type, dirt trails vary from region to region and thus offer unique challenges specific to the surface.

Take the damp, usually muddy condition of the Pacific Northwest and Northeast, where trails tend to wind through thick woods and forests. Now head south to the deserts of California, Nevada, Arizona and Utah, where hardpacked dirt and sand (and in some places slick rock) is king. Dry lakes, naturally, will provide flatter, faster surfaces. And in the deep South and Hawaii, loamy, bright orange-red clay creates an entirely different riding experience.

SAND
Riding in sand is a blast, but it also requires a certain amount of finesse and technique best summed up in this rule of thumb: Accelerate sooner and brake later than you would on surfaces with greater traction. Your bike will naturally “track” in its path when riding in sand—don't worry, this weaving sensation is normal.—so keep the throttle on and shift to a higher gear if possible.

You want to keep your speed up, which will then allow the bike to rise on top of, or “plane”, the sand. Also remember that your bike will stop much more quickly in sand than on harder surfaces, so adjust your braking accordingly.

ROCKS
Taking an off-road machine out in rocky areas can be somewhat intimidating for new riders, and if you plan on doing a lot of riding in rocky terrain, you might think about beefing up your skid plate protection

Riding a trail with rocks that are small and numerous, your bike will handle very similar to the way it does in sandy conditions. Conversely, if the rocks are larger, you'll have to carefully plot a path around or over each one. Either way, momentum is your friend, so keep your speed up and watch for sharp-edged or jutting rocks that could damage a tire, rim, engine case or low-hanging foot.

WOODS
This type of riding is arguably the best way to sharpen your technical skills. Woods and forests, much like rocky terrain, are much less forgiving of pilot error, with tight, twisty trails demanding precision. Quick, side-to-side transitions, coupled with evasion of such obstacles as roots, logs, fallen trees and rocks, are the norm. Some of the best enduro and off-road racers grew up riding in the woods, and it's invaluable training regardless of where you typically ride.

HILL CLIMBING
One of the first, and most important, rules of thumb when attempting to climb or descend a hill is to always use common sense. Some hills might be too steep for your abilities, while others might be too steep for your motorcycle's capability, regardless of your own skill level.

Also, never ride past your limit of visibility—if you can't see what's on the other side of a hill's crest, slow down until you can.

WHOOPS
Whoops, or whoop-de-doos as they're also known, are closely spaced bumps usually found in heavily used sections of a trail. (If you're a skier, think of a mogul run. Same idea.) Whoops create a roller-coaster effect when riding up one bump and down the next, and should be navigated while standing on the bike's footpegs.

WATER/MUD CROSSING
Water and mud can hide obstacles (roots, ruts, rocks, etc.) on the trail, so it's always best to ride more cautiously during wet periods. Mudholes can also be deeper than they appear, so be alert for this possibility as well.

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05 Oct 2009, 11:56
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Joined: 12 Sep 2008, 14:04
Posts: 326
Post Re: Safe ATV riding tips!
Rules for Safe Riding — Trail & Off-Road BasicsThere's no such thing as having too much information when it comes to safe, responsible off-road riding. And between your Owner's Manual, Pitster Pro Tips & Practice Guide (which comes with every Pitster Pro dirtbike and ATV). Here are a handful of general guidelines for helping you ride better and smarter.

How do I know when a bike or scooter is the right size? When it comes to choosing an appropriate-size bike or scooter, the best rule of thumb is simply to go into your dealer and sit on a variety of machines. If it feels too big, it probably is. Get a feel for the various models on the floor, and then discuss your needs with a knowledgeable Honda sales rep.

How should the bike or scooter fit me? You should always make sure that: 1) your feet can touch the ground, and 2) you can easily and comfortably reach all controls (brakes, throttle, clutch, turn indicators).
2) how much bike or scooter you really need.

Where can I learn more about choosing the right bike or scooter? Beyond simply strolling into your nearest Honda dealer and asking, you might want to check out the various streetbike and scooter enthusiast magazines, industry buyers' guides, and the Motorcycle Safety Foundation's (MSF) website at www.msf-usa.org. Also hit up your friends who ride for their advice and opinions. There's no shortage of information easily at hand to help guide you through your purchase. And remember: Motorcycling's a lot of fun, and there's no reason why your buying experience shouldn't be too.

Are there dedicated resources for specific types of riders, like re-entry owners, women or commuters? The quick answer to this is a resounding “yes” — there are numerous groups, clubs and/or training centers out there for pretty much every rider type, skill/experience level, and gender. The best bet would be to 1) consult your local Pitster Pro dealer for organizations in your area; and 2) search online for the specific group/club that suits your needs.

I really want my buddy to buy a Pitster Pro so he can ride with me. He's somewhat hesitant, however, so how can I convince him? Have you taken your buddy for a ride on your bike? If not, start there and introduce him to the thrill and excitement of motorcycling. Next, take him down to your nearest Pitster Pro dealer and show him how many different models are available, explaining that somewhere on that showroom floor is the perfect bike for him. You might also have him chat with your other riding buddies, and let them expound on how fun it is to ride.

I'm meeting resistance from certain friends on purchasing a motorcycle. How do I counter their arguments against riding? Each case like this is different, and those who object have their reasons. That said, you could put their minds at ease by explaining that you have taken or will take a rider safety training course, and that you intend to follow all rules of the road safely and intelligently. A proper rider is a defensive rider, and there are no better weapons than awareness and caution when it comes to avoiding accidents. And given today's gas prices, you could also point out the cost-efficiency of riding a motorcycle, and how much money you will save at the pump.

General Safe Riding Tips
Always use the "buddy system" and never ride alone.
Stay on the trail. This is more than just a safety issue; riding off a designated trail also impacts the environment.
Most public trails have two-way traffic, so take it easy around corners and leave plenty of room for oncoming riders to pass.
Get to know your surroundings. Learn to “read” the terrain as you ride, and always look well ahead of where you're going.
Never ride double. Dirtbikes and ATVs are designed for a single rider.
Stay with your kids. New riders need to be supervised.
Always wear your helmet.
Give your bike or ATV a good visual inspection before each ride. Check out our Pre-Ride Inspection or owner's manual for more details.
Be a responsible rider. Always use common sense and respect the rights of others when you ride.

Be safe!

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http://www.pitsterpro.com


05 Oct 2009, 12:00
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