For some people, getting a motorbike feels like a pipe dream. You like the idea of it, but it doesn’t seem practical.
But you know what? Impracticality is a terrible reason not to do something that you know you’d love. Especially when your hopes and dreams don’t have to be so impractical.Motorbikes are efficient, nippy, and yes, a whole lot of fun. If you do a lot of traveling on your own, a motorbike can be a far more practical option than a car, especially if you enjoy quick road trips (but without the kids) and exploring the area around your home.
However, while motorbikes can be great, you can’t deny that they are more risky than driving a car. And, yes, sometimes a car is a more practical option. A motorbike isn’t ideal for the school run or getting the family groceries.
So, how can you turn your motorbike dreams into a reasonable reality?
Do Get a License
If you can drive a car, you know full well the process of getting a license. What you might not know is that you need a completely different license to ride a motorbike.
While a car is pretty much a car, you only need one license to drive different cars, motorbikes are a different animal entirely.
Depending on the power of your motorbike, you might need additional training and licenses. Mopeds and low-powered bikes are the entry-level option and, depending on where you live, teenagers might be able to get a license. But if you want a more powerful machine, you will need extra training and tests.
While you’re at it, it’s a good idea to take an extra motorcycle skills class and other more advanced license classes. If you have these licenses, you’ll be a safer and more competent motorcycle rider. You might even get a discount on your insurance.
Do Not Let Your Kids Ride
Motorbikes are a great deal of fun and can be a fantastic way to get around. But they aren’t suitable for small children.
Every family is different and has different rules for their kids, but bikes are heavy and dangerous anywhere. If you have small children, make sure that they’re supervised around your bike. Even a stationary bike can be dangerous if it falls onto a child.
If you’ve got kids, have a car as well as a bike. The car can be used for school runs and other trips with the family, while the bike can be used for solo trips and commutes.
When your kids are older and more mature, you can think about introducing them to your hobby, but only when they can handle it.
Do Choose the Right Bike
As mentioned, different nikes can have wildly different power levels and driving styles. If you’re a newbie, maybe resist the temptation to get the overpowered bike you’ve been dreaming of.
If you’re unfamiliar with motorcycles, these bikes can be dangerous to ride and you might not be able to get the most out of them. They’re also often much more expensive.
Instead, choose a starter bike that’s more you’re speed. Honestly, any motorbike is a cooler option than no bike at all, and nobody wants to be the person who can’t control their own ride.
Do Not Ride Unsafely
It seems like an obvious one, but you should always respect your bike and respect the road. If you’ve got a license, you hopefully know what you’re doing. But while it’s tempting to let loose and see what your bike can do, it’s not always a good idea.
Other vehicles, bad road conditions, and poor weather are all potential dangers for any motorist, but especially a motorcyclist.
If you ride unsafely, whether you’re under the influence, cutting blind corners, or overtaking when you shouldn’t, you risk your life and the lives of others around you. This is even more important if you have a passenger, because they can impact the balance of the bike.
Don’t be stupid and you’ll get years out of your bike.
Do Get the Right Gear
Depending on where you live, a motorcycle helmet might be compulsory before you can legally ride a motorbike. But honestly, even if it’s not compulsory, you should act like it is.
A helmet, especially a full-face helmet, can and will save your life. If you’ve seen a helmet after a crash, you can imagine the kind of damage a motorbike accident can do to your head. Helmets reduce the risk of a fatality by a huge amount.
As well as motorcycle helmets, it’s a good idea to consider proper leathers and other protective gear.
Bikers don’t just wear leather jackets because they look cool.
Tough leather and denim protect your skin if you fall off the bike. Again, nobody wants to imagine what bare skin looks like when it’s been on the business end of asphalt at 60mph, so do yourself a favor and protect yourself.
Reinforced jeans and a leather jacket are better than nothing, but leather overalls are a great option because they are designed to handle the road. They’ll also protect you from wind chill and keep you warm.
Do Not Ride in Bad Weather
Some days just aren’t ideal for driving. Adverse weather conditions make it harder to control your vehicle and, unsurprisingly, increase your chances of crashing.
But this is even more true if you’re riding a bike. Bikes are harder to handle than cars and have much fewer safety features and gadgets. A wet road can kill, and it’s not worth risking it for a ride in awful weather.
Do Get Insurance and an Attorney
Nobody hopes to get into a collision or accident, but it can happen.
If you’re riding your bike and you end up getting hurt or otherwise involved in an accident, insurance can save you and everyone else involved a lot of pain. You should also get in touch with a motorcycle attorney, which is why it’s a good idea to already have their contact information.
This way, no matter what happens, you’re ready for the next step after an accident.