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I am a new rider with only 2 months of riding under my belt so far. I havent taken a riding course yet, just been kinda winging it. On the ride training so to say. Well I was on youtube watching some riding tips videos, and I ran across a video on Countersteer. Turn left to go right and right to go left. Sounded to me like the Cars movie when Doc said "if you turn hard enough right, you'll find yourself going left." Well I had to see if there was any practical truth to that, and went out on the bike. Talk about a weird feeling lol. It took some getting used to but I find myself doing it all the time now. For me it makes lane changes and right turns SO much smoother. It actually started me to be more in tune with my bike, and I am a lot more comfortable on her now.
 

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Ha, good to see your figuring it out. We have been countersteering our bikes since the training wheels came off and did not even know it. In a sweeping turn to the right you can do it one handed by just pushing forward on the right grip. It tips the bike and right you go. Everyone overcomplicates it and makes it seem like your taking a left turn before you go right but it is really just a natural thing that if you think about it your likely to over think it.
 

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Thats exactly what I was doing, over thinking it. Then it became natural, second nature. And my ride is a hell of a lot more enjoyable now
 

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I've been practicing this for 25 years now. I just recently watched a video a local rider posted "showing how easy his Harley was to ride", it was very noticeable that he was turning into the corner. Thinking it might be an optical illusion I started paying attention to the gap (from side to side) between the handlebars and the tank, which was how I noticed his technique. WOW! I THOUGHT I was barely pushing right to go right, but see now there is quite a bit of movement on the bars.
 

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Everyone counter steers in many situations, but some people realize it! It's one of those things where, once you recognize that's what you're doing, you have tremendous control of your machine.

Countersteering is how I, personally, ride my bike 99% of the time. Excluding low speed maneuvering of course, and occasional sweeping interstate turns. But, if you think it's good for changing lanes and high speed turns, watch how awesome it is to have that level of precise lean-angle control on your every day riding! The other advantage of doing it intentionally in all of your riding, is if you ever have to swerve, it's now second nature. You'll be amazed how quick you'll get out of harms way when you are an 'accomplished' counter-steerer.

My 2 cents!
 

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Counter steering is something i practice every time I get on my 900 and go for a ride. Really helps on the curves and cornering, lane changing, swerving, etc etc.
 

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Glad you figured it out - DO yourself a favor and take the course - I took my first one in 1989 - and have taken it a few times since - I am now trying to take the Advanced course every three years - and you know what? I learn something every time I take it . . .
 

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I took the MSF course last weekend and countersteering was taught and tested. The material in the course is excellent. I encourage anyone to take it, beginner or experienced rider. My plan is to ride for a couple years or so, practice, practice, practice what I learned in the course in a parking lot, then take the advanced/experienced riders course.
 

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RobLaidBack, If I may make a suggestion. I purchased the Ride Like a Pro series of DVD's (full disclosure: I am in no way associated with them, except by using their product). I found them to be really eye-opening. They focus on slow speed, however some much transfers to what you do above 20 Kilometers as well. But I did not just watch the video, I bought 20 small cones and got out in the parking lot and practiced too. I rode back in the 70s and 80s and then got away from it, coming back in 2010. So I'm not new to riding, but sure needed to knock off some rust. I think the DVD's were a great investment.
 

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I discovered counter steering when I was around 14 on my ten speed bike. I had no clue it was called counter steering and had a heck of a job trying to
convince my buddies that when up to reasonable speed you actually turn left (push) to go right until they actually tried it while thinking about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
RobLaidBack, If I may make a suggestion. I purchased the Ride Like a Pro series of DVD's
Thanks Smrph for that info. Just found it on Amazon. Also I appreciate everyone's advice on the riding course. Havent had the time thus far to attend the one in my area, but it is definitely on my to-do list
 

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Taking the MSF course now (well, tomorrow and Sunday are my last 2 days) and we started on counter-steering. I think the course is really worthwhile for the few tricks I've picked up.

Also, I didn't register, just showed up and got in from the lottery.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Taking the MSF course now (well, tomorrow and Sunday are my last 2 days)


The course I know of is only 2 days start to finish. I cant recall the name of it, but I learned about it from my local Kaw shop. How long is the course you're taking?
 

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There is nothing to it. If u ever rode the bycicle you know what to do. I mean come on.
I can't say that I found the riding techniques very similar.
Just my opinion and riding experience. But, getting a light and slow bicycle to lean and turn did not require a lot of attention.
Of course, I never spent a lot of time on the asphalt on my bicycles.:)

Most of the time I ride my motorcycle 2-up; curves and lane changes are pretty relaxed; not requiring much attention to my input.

But, when I am alone; I like to push things a bit. Lane changes (when appropriate) become a quick "avoidance swerve". Hard curves are chances to explore mine and my bikes limits.
It is fun and keeps me ready for the unexpected.

If a rider doesn't pay attention to how they countersteer; I would recommend practicing.

Get on a straight stretch of road in good repair a good shoulder and no traffic. Accelerate up to about 40mph and let go with your left hand. Slowly change your lane position using only one hand. Try it left and right handed.

Scott
 

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a great suggestion that i heard my last MSF class... and this is over 15years of riding experience, was 'listen to your bike, your bike will talk to you and tell you if you took that last curve just right or not.' sounds like you are doing a good job listening to your bike. also, i too recommend taking the class. even after 14 years of riding, i still learned alot and my riding skills definitely got sharper as well... i also learned that i had picked up quite a few bad habits since the previous MSF class which was some 5 or so years ago.
 

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If a rider doesn't pay attention to how they countersteer; I would recommend practicing.



Scott
You got it right there.

People are arguing different methods but the truth is everyone is doing the same thing, it's just that certain people are aware of certain things more than others. I've heard people tell me they turn by leaning their body and putting weight on one footpeg. Well, they are using their arms to steady themselves, and countersteering!

A good, proficient rider should frequently practice different methods, be consciously aware of everything they are doing, and everything should be intentional. Body position, counter steering input, head angle, all should be INTENTIONAL, whatever you do. I see people who have trouble keeping their lane on the highway, because they know how to turn, but not intentionally enough to make minor adjustments (so they are throwing their body weight around trying to keep in their spot in the lane), I cringe to think of how they would be able to react if someone violated their already volatile lane space.

Just because you can make the bike turn, doesn't mean you know how to do it!

I'm also a big believer in practice. For one, it's fun and challenging. For two, I'd much rather encounter an emergency situation having practiced the appropriate avoidance technique recently, not 'years ago'. I like to find big open roads to practice hard stops, practice swerving (On wide open roads I find 'targets' in the road to swerve around, like a discoloration in the asphalt or a spot the light hits just right) and swerve around it like it's a small animal. It's fun, and it builds skills. Had a lady with a minivan almost T-Bone me and I instinctively swerved HARD to avoid her. I was kind of wishing life had instant replay because I've never seen my bike swerve so hard in my life! Lots of practice meant when the adrenaline kicked in, there was no 'thinking' and just 'doing' when I had half a second to get from here to there in an emergency.
 

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You got it right there.

People are arguing different methods but the truth is everyone is doing the same thing, it's just that certain people are aware of certain things more than others. I've heard people tell me they turn by leaning their body and putting weight on one footpeg. Well, they are using their arms to steady themselves, and countersteering!

A good, proficient rider should frequently practice different methods, be consciously aware of everything they are doing, and everything should be intentional. Body position, counter steering input, head angle, all should be INTENTIONAL, whatever you do. I see people who have trouble keeping their lane on the highway, because they know how to turn, but not intentionally enough to make minor adjustments (so they are throwing their body weight around trying to keep in their spot in the lane), I cringe to think of how they would be able to react if someone violated their already volatile lane space.

Just because you can make the bike turn, doesn't mean you know how to do it!

I'm also a big believer in practice. For one, it's fun and challenging. For two, I'd much rather encounter an emergency situation having practiced the appropriate avoidance technique recently, not 'years ago'. I like to find big open roads to practice hard stops, practice swerving (On wide open roads I find 'targets' in the road to swerve around, like a discoloration in the asphalt or a spot the light hits just right) and swerve around it like it's a small animal. It's fun, and it builds skills. Had a lady with a minivan almost T-Bone me and I instinctively swerved HARD to avoid her. I was kind of wishing life had instant replay because I've never seen my bike swerve so hard in my life! Lots of practice meant when the adrenaline kicked in, there was no 'thinking' and just 'doing' when I had half a second to get from here to there in an emergency.
I like to practice in a church parking lot not far from where I live. Plenty of room there to practice hard stops, figure 8's, countersteering, swerving, all that.
 
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