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and completed it successfully with flying colors! The material, both the written and the skills/riding part of the course, was great. My instructor was very helpful, very patient with us. I rode a Honda NightHawk 250 that was provided by the course. It had dents in the gas tank and other wear and tear on it from being used in the course so much. But it got me through the skills part of the of the course successfully so I am not complaining. I highly recommend taking this course for anyone who rides, beginner or experienced rider.
 

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I took the first 2 (of 4) days of it this weekend. I understand now why so many people are killed on bikes. Out of 11 of us, only 5 can ride worth a damn. I got stuck behind a guy that kept stalling out, wouldn't go past first gear and couldn't figure out the instructions. There were probably 6 people like him. One lady quit early on the second day because she just couldn't figure out how to not drop a bike.

Let me just say that no stereotypes were broken this weekend. It was amazing how difficult it was for some people to do the easiest maneuvers.

Two more days left this coming weekend. More classroom time. Is it a law that Drivers Ed videos have to be 11 years old and look like they were produced by 19 year olds?
 

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I took the first 2 (of 4) days of it this weekend. I understand now why so many people are killed on bikes. Out of 11 of us, only 5 can ride worth a damn. I got stuck behind a guy that kept stalling out, wouldn't go past first gear and couldn't figure out the instructions. There were probably 6 people like him. One lady quit early on the second day because she just couldn't figure out how to not drop a bike.

Let me just say that no stereotypes were broken this weekend. It was amazing how difficult it was for some people to do the easiest maneuvers.

Two more days left this coming weekend. More classroom time. Is it a law that Drivers Ed videos have to be 11 years old and look like they were produced by 19 year olds?
The lady that kept dropping her bike should have stayed. Here in Ohio according to the instructor that led the class I took a few years ago EVERYTHING that happens during the learning portion of the class doesn't mean anything. There was an older fellow that did the same thing in our class. The morning of the last day we were instructed on manuvers that we would have to do during the test. The last 1/2 of the last day was the actual testing. As long as you were able to manuver correctly during the test thats all that counted. The only other guy that rode his bike to the classes that I thought could ride FAILED during the manuverability tests, the old man that dropped the bike PASSED. The moral of the story for all that are going to the classes... "DONT GIVE UP " ;)
 

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Thanks to all here. My plan is to ride more, longer rides, ride to work, church, wherever. Continue practicing the skills learned in the course in a parking lot. Then get more training, either taking the experienced riders course or RLAP or something else.

There were 6 of us in the class. Only myself and one other person owned bikes. The other 4 had experience ranging from never being on a bike before to having ridden several years ago and just getting back into it. One guy did not even know how to drive a stick shift or use a manual transmission, but after he got it down he did great. Overall a very positive learning experience.
 

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The lady that kept dropping her bike should have stayed.

Yeah, no kidding. She didn't want to succeed. No idea why she signed up and stole someone's spot. There were other ladies in the class smaller than her than managed their way through it.

I'm more concerned about the guys though...most of them just couldn't figure out the first step. Couldn't go in a straight line and wouldn't go over 12 MPH.
 

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I took the class in August and was glad I did. It changed so many things about how I ride for the better, plus I got to skip the skills test at DMV. You don't actually get out of the test, the instructors change hats and give the test.

My 17.5 yo daughter took the class over the weekend. She had almost no riding experience, just a little bit with me in an empty parking lot where I showed her basic control, starting, stopping, shifting to 2nd, etc. She beat me on the skills test. I only got a 98, she got 100 %.

Those guys are good. One woman really didn't look like she would make it through. She didn't quit though and she passed the skills test in good shape. Their patience is amazing considering what some students pull.

So, I came out of the class fully qualified to ride a small bike at low speeds in a parking lot. The real skills are still being learned.
 

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Yeah, no kidding. She didn't want to succeed. No idea why she signed up and stole someone's spot.
Riding isn't for everyone. Some people will *never* master the skills needed to do it safely, and they don't always figure that out until they try it.

One of the things you learned in class was that everyone has their own level of acceptable risk. Another thing you learned was "Ride your own ride".

Well, that lady figured out her risk level (before she got hurt or killed, thank God), and made the decision that was best for herself.

You are in no position to say what was right for her. Ride your own ride.
 

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You are in no position to say what was right for her. Ride your own ride.
She took someone else's seat that didn't get to take the class. That's my issue - people out there who were probably going to stay in the class got locked out. She's friends with two of the guys who are absolutely horrible at riding and couldn't ride a straight line after 6 hours of practice.
 

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Riding isn't for everyone. Some people will *never* master the skills needed to do it safely, and they don't always figure that out until they try it.

One of the things you learned in class was that everyone has their own level of acceptable risk. Another thing you learned was "Ride your own ride".

Well, that lady figured out her risk level (before she got hurt or killed, thank God), and made the decision that was best for herself.

You are in no position to say what was right for her. Ride your own ride.
That's exactly it. How was she to know she wouldn't do well? Better than spending thousands of dollars on a motorcycle only to take it out on a public road and get hurt.

As far as 'stealing a spot', it wasn't the only MSF course ever for all of eternity. There will be others for those who didn't register soon enough. She didn't take anyones spot, that was her spot, she got there first, and paid her money. Stinks that she didn't do well and it turned out riding might not be for her, but one of the things that makes me really happy the MSF exists is, we don't have all of these people teaching themselves to ride on public roads and getting hurt!

My wife struggled with the MSF course as well. She completed it, but not without some difficulty and a few bruises. She had never ridden a motorcycle, never driven anything with a manual transmission, and has a bit of a nervous personality (test anxiety if you will). I'm sure some more proficient rider was behind her and getting frustrated as she would drop the bike on very simple maneuvers or be too afraid to get it up to speed, but that's what the course is for. Some people can hop on a bike and just ride it. Others do pretty good with some practice. Still others need a little work to get proficient. Now she runs circles around people, she's an excellent rider and more importantly, a safe rider. You don't see her drifting over the yellow line on curvy roads like some of these obviously-self-taught folks, she knows where she needs to be on the interstate in relation to where she's visible, and she spots danger up ahead before anyone else!

A 'good' rider isn't a rider who never drops their bike at an intersection, can take a corner at 110 or can shift at exactly 5219 RPM's each time by ear. A good rider is a safe rider, who is in absolute control of the direction and position of their bike because they understand how to control their bike (they don't just 'do it', and when you ask them how, they have to think about it, or can't answer you.) and so they aren't drifting around in their lane. They are defensive, know the warning signs for danger, know how to brake with maximum force and minimum excuses (i.e., had to lay it down, tires locked up and I don't know why, bike was down before I knew what happened, etc.). That's who comes out of the MSF course!
 

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I took the Basic Rider course this Spring at a Harley dealership as the Riders Edge course. It was fantastic. The book portion of it could have been sped up a bit, but I know that people learn at difference paces. The riding portion though was perfect. I had never been on a bike before, and was amazed at how quickly they can get you riding.

I started on an 1982 Suk GS450. Which was a pretty good first bike as long as you aren't very short. So far this season I have done about 3000 to 3500 miles, including a few lenthy trips. The GS is now gone, and has been replaced with a 2000 VN800 Classic, which suits my size much better.

My wife is considering the course for next Spring as well, which I am encouraging because it's a safe place to learn if riding a bike is for her or not. If it's not, we are only out a few hundred bucks and she had an interesting experience, if it is, then she comes out a knowledgable and much safer rider.

Personally, I think people who don't take the course are crazy.
 
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