BRC was a horrible experience - Page 2 - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
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post #11 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-16-2016, 09:11 PM
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Rice,,practice practice practice prac prac pra pra and so on
fyI went over on my 9,,and that was in my garage,we all get scared,Think something is wrong if your not
Don't give up
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post #12 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-16-2016, 10:38 PM Thread Starter
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Don't take this the wrong way, but If you continue to be afraid of your bike, you may want to sell it.

No offense taken. I joined and posted to get support. I know plenty of people have been in my shoes. I think the heat stroke making me slightly delusional has clouded my thoughts. My rider coach was very supportive and sent me a text to say she thought I did great in our class. Obviously, I couldn't do day 2 and they are more than happy to let me take the course again later at no charge. I am confident in stopping, starting, shifting, pretty fair at low speed clutch control. I just have to practice those cone weaves. We have lots of large parking lots to go practice. I also let the dealership tell me I didn't need the reduced reach package which is wrong. I've got the shift rod ordered and hubby will be moving the foot controls closers as soon as that gets here. I had an unrealistic expectation that my basic rider course would be all I need for real rad practice and I know better now. I just want to be safe and keep my bike scuff free.

Thanks for all the encouragement!
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post #13 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-17-2016, 08:47 AM
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Nice to hear that you're not going to give up. Does that extended reach package do anything for the handlebars? One thing you might be able to do to practice cone weaving (I do this) is on a street with no traffic, find markings (indents, reflective sticky things, paint spills etc) and use those as markers to weave thru.

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Originally Posted by Rice Girl View Post
Don't take this the wrong way, but If you continue to be afraid of your bike, you may want to sell it.

No offense taken. I joined and posted to get support. I know plenty of people have been in my shoes. I think the heat stroke making me slightly delusional has clouded my thoughts. My rider coach was very supportive and sent me a text to say she thought I did great in our class. Obviously, I couldn't do day 2 and they are more than happy to let me take the course again later at no charge. I am confident in stopping, starting, shifting, pretty fair at low speed clutch control. I just have to practice those cone weaves. We have lots of large parking lots to go practice. I also let the dealership tell me I didn't need the reduced reach package which is wrong. I've got the shift rod ordered and hubby will be moving the foot controls closers as soon as that gets here. I had an unrealistic expectation that my basic rider course would be all I need for real rad practice and I know better now. I just want to be safe and keep my bike scuff free.

Thanks for all the encouragement!
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post #14 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-17-2016, 09:25 AM
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I teach multiple levels of MSF courses and some more advanced curricula from other vendors, in each class I tell all my students controlling a motorcycle requires two things; the proper technique and smooth application of the technique. While we can explain and show proper technique it is up to the rider to make it smooth and that takes practice. The BRC class is fast paced by design. The pace is necessary to develop motor skills without allowing much time to overthink the process. When facilitated properly it works extremely well. That said, every person develops at their own pace and extreme weather, hot or cold, is always a factor that can impede development.

Fear, tension, and anxiety will prevent you from performing any smooth operation of a motorcycle. Here is an example to try....take a sheet of paper and sign your name. Looks as expected right? I'm certain it was easy and smooth to complete. Now try flexing your shoulder, bicep, forearm muscles and squeeze heck out of the pen while signing your name. Amazing how your signature got short, small, and very dark; it also took a lot of energy. The same thing happens when controlling a motorcycle. You have to be more relaxed in order to manipulate the controls smoothly. Even experienced riders struggle with this when fear or anxiety creeps in so you are not alone here. The secret to overcoming fear is to concentration. If you are focusing your concentration on something (i.e. technique) you cannot be afraid at the same time as each takes place is separate places in the brain. If your focus slips you can find that fear again so this too takes practice.

The offset cone weave on exercise 6 is not an easy one, however, it can be made easier with just a few tips. First, understand motorcycles do not ride well at idle. Too many riders attempt to control their low speeds through this exercise with just the throttle......very hard if not impossible to do smoothly. It usually results in too much throttle and missing a cone or two, then the tension rises and steering becomes difficult....not good. A better technique is to make plenty of power available by applying more throttle than you need and holding it steady throughout the weave. Then all your speed control is done by using the friction zone; make small movements not large ones with the clutch. As you move through the weaves the clutch should not released all the way, again remember to maintain the steady throttle.
Second, look further ahead. When you look at the cones you will have a very difficult time going around them. Looking further ahead slows your sense of speed (how fast it feels like you are going) and the body naturally relaxes making steering easier. Sense of speed is also why anyone with poor vision drives slowly and those with good vision slow down excessively when going over a bridge or through a tunnel.

Lastly, to reiterate what everyone else has said practice. Practice steady throttle while using only the clutch adjust speed. After you feel more comfortable in a straight line start with some weaves gradually increasing the difficulty as needed.

It takes far more rider skill to go slow than to go fast.
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post #15 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-17-2016, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rice Girl View Post
I know plenty of people have been in my shoes.
That's correct, I know of a friend who went to take her motorcycle course and got intimidated by the bike she was on and decided to quit the course half-way thru, but since I was nearby watching, the Instructor asked to go get me because he wanted to talk to us both. He told her she was doing well and could use another bike she was more comfortable on to take the course, he convinced her she could do it, so she re-entered the course using a different bike which made all the difference. She told me later that the boost was the Instructor giving her permission to do the course at her own speed which gave her more confidence. She was afraid at first but after returning with a new sense of confidence she passed the course test and got her motorcycle license.
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post #16 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-17-2016, 03:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rice Girl View Post
I just want to be safe and keep my bike scuff free.
Napom gave me a good idea for practicing. If you have engine bars, get some of the foam rubber pipe insulation tubes sold at Home Depot. Cut them to the right length and put them on your engine bars like you would a pipe. If you do go down while practicing, they will help to prevent scratches to the bars and also cushion the fall for the bike. It comes in several sizes. I couldn't find any 1 1/4" on line, but they have it and 1 1/2" in my local store.

Everbilt 1 in. x 6 ft. Foam Pipe Insulation-ORP11812 - The Home Depot

Installed:
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post #17 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-19-2016, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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Oh, Gearhead, I hope I didn't sound like I have anything bad to say about my course or my rider coaches. The whole experience was really my flop for not being cautious about the weather. I think I was already way too sick even an hour in but didn't realize it. I think that part of it is what let my fear set in. When you're boiling from the inside, there's no way you'll retain much info. I'm excited to try again in a couple of months.

That said, I had a GREAT practice session yesterday morning. My turns are nowhere near as tight as I want them to get but I have realistic expectations now. I know there's only one way to eat an elephant and I took a starter bite yesterday. Felt good and I'm happy to slow down my pace. Thanks everyone for your words of encouragement!
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post #18 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-20-2016, 06:50 AM
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I agree with practice, but you need to practice the right techniques. Gearhead provides some good tips.

I suggest getting a copy of the Ride Like a Pro DVD and a copy of the Twist of the Wrist book by Keith Code. Ride like a pro is all a out low speed manovering. Twist of the wrist explains why motorcycles work the way they do with a lot on proper cornering. I think there is also a twist of the wrist video on you tube that is about 1 1/2 hours long.

WB
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post #19 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-20-2016, 10:04 AM
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I'm a 23 year MSF instructor, and a 43 year rider up here in Wisconsin with close to 260,000 miles under my butt. Over 23 years I've taught thousands of students. If anyone wants to PM me with questions about the BRC, taking the course, getting over the anxiety, whatever. I may be able to help.

I just completed a class yesterday, as a solo instructor with eight students. Of the eight, six were brand new to riding, so it took a lot of work and patience. But we all made it through. Heat during the BRC is a very tough issue to deal with, even in Wisconsin. It was near 90 both days this weekend. In the southern states it must be terribly hot, and I know some southern states run the class very early in the morning to avoid the heat. Drink LOTS of water, more than you think you'd ever need or could take in, because you shed water and dehydrate SO fast, especially under the stress of learning riding.

I saw on an earlier post about four students dumping their bike, and an instructor dumping the bike. That class should have been held up well before that happened, especially if an instructor dumped a bike. Don't take this wrong, but from an instructor point of view all of the BRC exercises are easy to do on any bike. If an instructor dumped a bike during any exercise something was definitely wrong. Instructors do make mistakes, I have too, but an instructor dumping a bike makes me really question the riding abilities of the instructor. Perhaps the heat and a physical issue affected the instructor.
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post #20 of 32 (permalink) Old 06-20-2016, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rice Girl View Post
Oh, Gearhead, I hope I didn't sound like I have anything bad to say about my course or my rider coaches. !
The experience you had was your experience, good, bad, or indifferent. I do not want to change that. The only thought I would like to impart is that when it comes to any learning environment, success and failure are one in the same. Even if we do not succeed in what we set out to do....a lesson has been learned; sometimes it's as simple as what not to do next time. I'd say you were very successful in learning many things during the course, not the least of which is the effect heat can have on one's body and mind.

None of us were born with the ability to walk, it took practice & lots of it. In this way riding is no different. Keep at it and your practice sessions will be filled with many victories, some small others larger, much like your last one.
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"A good long ride can clear your mind, restore your faith, and use up a lot of fuel"

"I believe in treating everyone with respect, but, first you have to get their attention"

Never be ashamed to unlearn an old habit...
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