Countersteer video - BMW Luxury Touring Community
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post #1 of 7 Old Mar 26th, 2017, 10:50 pm Thread Starter
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Countersteer video

This Youtube video shows a clear example of loss-of-control by a rider not familiar with countersteer. But what is of greatest concern is the number (maybe 70%?) of comments which explain the accident as the result of excess speed, braking in a turn, looking the wrong direction, and any number of other excuses discounting or unaware of countersteer. No wonder there are so many motorcycle accidents.

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post #2 of 7 Old Mar 27th, 2017, 7:18 am
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Re: Countersteer video

There have been discussions on the benefits of countersteering on this forum before. It is an invaluable skill to avoid obstacles and still maintain control of your bike.

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post #3 of 7 Old Mar 27th, 2017, 9:07 am
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Re: Countersteer video

I had watched this video a couple of weeks ago, and regardless of what it said in the video, I think that a big part of the cause for that collision is target fixation. You lock your sight onto that target, and you are done for! The guy was going around the corner already, and he should have been heeled over to the right, and of course using counter-steer to do so, and should have no reasons to veer into the other lane at all. But, then again, this rider seem to be fairly novice, and so anything could have been the cause, and therefore the guy who had compile and post the video probably had inside information to make those statements.
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post #4 of 7 Old Mar 27th, 2017, 10:03 am
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Re: Countersteer video

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Originally Posted by PadG View Post
I had watched this video a couple of weeks ago, and regardless of what it said in the video, I think that a big part of the cause for that collision is target fixation. You lock your sight onto that target, and you are done for! The guy was going around the corner already, and he should have been heeled over to the right, and of course using counter-steer to do so, and should have no reasons to veer into the other lane at all. But, then again, this rider seem to be fairly novice, and so anything could have been the cause, and therefore the guy who had compile and post the video probably had inside information to make those statements.
I was thinking the same thing of him being somewhat of a novice. It never fails to amaze me when I look at the motorcycle crash video compilations how some people simply ride off the side of the road with no apparent cause. No sand or pot hole to avoid or other obstruction yet they end up in the woods. I don't think this guy fared too well though if he survived at all.

Gordon
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2001 K1200LTI – Champagne (current ride) Lazy Susan
1998 R1100RT – Never should have sold it
1974 Yamaha TX 750 Twin. Omni Phase Balanced


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post #5 of 7 Old Mar 27th, 2017, 10:26 am
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Re: Countersteer video

Target fixation probably had a bit to do with it, but as they pointed out in the video, you can see the bike standup and shake a few times as the rider tried to pull away from the truck by turning the bars to the right instead of applying pressure to the right, turning them to the left.

There were a number of failures, but I'd agree that a lack of understanding of counter steering was the ultimate thing that did him in.
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post #6 of 7 Old Mar 29th, 2017, 8:30 pm Thread Starter
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Re: Countersteer video

The referenced video shows the pre impact rider attempting to reconcile motorcycle handling in a situation he has never encountered before. My concern is that MSF courses talk about "look where you want to go" as though that is the answer and cure-all for motorcycle directional control. I contend that it may be a good idea, but is otherwise BS. I can look anywhere but until I move or torque the handlebars ain't nothing good gonna happen. Still others talk of target fixation, pressing on foot pegs, lean (whatever that is), etc but likewise I (or my passenger) can move my torso all over but the handlebars determine everything. MSF courses may even talk of counter steer but the course I took a long time ago said that was something really applicable for highway speeds.

Counter steer means that the handlebars have to be turned towards something to miss it. This will seem like a paradox to any beginner but it has to be recognized as part of the handling oxymoron of a two wheel vehicle. It is too late to find this out yourself when confronted by a major obstacle.

It can be demonstrated by riding a bicycle through a mud puddle and then sharply turning, and then going back and look at the tire tracks. But bicycles don't operate in a lethal environment. We do.

Reading the responses to that video were really an eye opener to me about the average knowledge state of our riders today.

Last edited by niel_petersen; Mar 29th, 2017 at 8:40 pm.
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post #7 of 7 Old Mar 30th, 2017, 11:04 am
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Re: Countersteer video

Target fixation is an instinctive behavior that must be controlled for motorcycle riding. Since it is an instinct it cannot be eliminated, only modified, pick a new target (in this case the inside of the turn)
Counter steering is counter intuitive and must be learned and practiced to the point of becoming a reflex memory in emergency situations. Each had a role in this scenario and we can debate how much of a role until we are blue in the face, but never know for certain.
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