Because if you can't handle the motorcycle at those speeds, you can't ride _well_.R1200RG said:I took the advanced MSF course two years ago and didn't think much of it. I mean REALLY, doing maneuvers at less than 20 mph around a bunch of cones is supposed to prepare you for street riding. Some of the techniques they teach are valid but practicing them at parking lot speeds is useless in my opinion. I spend less than 1 percent of my time riding at those speeds so why train/practice at those speeds? Just my opinion.
About a year and half ago I took the MSF Advanced Sport Bike course on my V-Strom. I thought it was very helpful and in a controlled environment, taught me that I could lay the Strom over much further that I would normally attempt on the street. The difference with the MSF Advanced course from other MSFs is that your allowed to push yourself and the bike as far as you want in the exercises and at least my instructor encouraged us to test our comfort zones.fpolek said:
This is a concern I have too with my RT. I took the MSF ERC a few years ago on my Harley. I felt after taking that on the HD that I wouldn't want to subject it to that mych clutch slipping again and it has a wet clutch. Has anyone had any problems taking one of these courses with an RT and its dry clutch?Travman said:...BMWs and dry clutches. In doing this type of course on an RT, are their any issues with burning the clutch up through a day of slow speed maneuvers.
mneblett said:Because if you can't handle the motorcycle at those speeds, you can't ride _well_.
Anyone can ride a bike at speed, with little/no skill (and fool themselves into thinking they're "good") because the wheels provide enough gyroscopic stability to get from point A to point B.
What low speed skills practice does is take away the gyroscopic stability of the wheels and make you actually have to _master_ the bike's controls for precision bike handling -- precision which will later manifest itself in how you control the bike at speed.
Low speed practice also makes you have to *think* about _exactly_ what you are doing and will have to be doing, and practice that thinking process. Learning how to do a tight turn and learning how to correctly do a higher speed turn in a parking lot has direct application to the street, whether we're talking about driving into/out of parking lots, turning from one street around a corner to another, or planning (and actually correctly executing) a higher speed run around a curve in a mountain pass (or even a freeway ramp). For example, nailing a high lean angle turn at 20-25 miles an hour in a parking lot, repeatedly, develops the processes (subconscious as well as conscious) in a safe environment, and better prepares you for the real world.
In another area, high effort braking is something most people unfortunately never practice, as it's virtually impossible to do on the street. Parking lot practice is the perfect place to learn how much you really can nail the brakes, and to develop the "muscle memory" so that it will be automatically available on the street.
Similarly, collision avoidance swerving is not something that can be practiced on the street -- not the do-a-quick-counter-steer-in-your-lane-on-the-way-home swerving, but the I-don't-know-which-way-I'll-have-to-react swerving that mimicks a suddenly-appearing threat on the street.
The fact that you didn't find the basic course very useful says more to me about your approach to the course, than its value.
I can't tell you how many very experienced riders I used to teach in the old MSF Advanced Rider's Course -- people with 25, 30, 40 years of riding -- that frankly didn't have a *clue* about how to handle their motorcycles, at least in ways that would help them survive street riding. I do not mean by that that I am improperly assuming they weren't good riders because they couldn't do parking lot exercises. I mean that the parking lot exercises were *extremely* useful in helping them see for themselves that they couldn't perform manuevers such as hard braking or swerving -- whether at parking lot or at high speeds.
Thank [insert the diety of your choice here] that we weren't doing the instruction at "street" speeds (apparently the speeds at which you believe "valuable" training is done) -- these guys would have spread themselves all over the road. And that's exactly the point of low-speed cone drills -- practice, practice, practice the same skills you should be using at higher speeds in a *far* more forgiving environment. The skills are the same whether gained and honed at high speed or low speed. The benefit of the low speed practice is that you can do many more repetitions in a given time, and do so while not having to worry about whether there's a pickup coming at you in your lane around the curve (or around the end of the line of parked cars at the local grocery store).
I have been asked before whether teaching experienced riders was more difficult because of their egos, the "I already know how to ride" factor. My response was that they all walked in like that, but we really never had to do any ego-busting or even comment on the subject -- after they realized that they didn't know how to get the best performance from their brakes (for example, seeing for themselves how *much* rear-brake-only use (a common problem) increased stopping distance was a really eye-opener), and then realized that you don't steer a bike by "shifting your weight" or "pressing down on the leg," but could instantly and highly accurately steer by counter-steering at the handlebars, they started to realize that these skills were things they need to learn for the street, and put aside their egos without a single negative word from us.
Ok, that's enough for now -- I expect you're getting (if maybe not yet accepting) my point by now
Did you take this course on an RT? If so, how did it handle the slow figure eights, etc.?fpolek said:
I took one of these classes on my HD Ultra which has ABS brakes and didn't have any issues as most of the training is at speeds below those that would engage the ABS. Also, the ABS actually gave me an advantage with the high speed barking drills as I didn't have the need to release a locked brake during the drills. I would think the RT with partially linked ABS would be pretty much the same experience as I had with my HD.DanDiver said:Mark, (and others)
ABS BREAK QUESTION - How does this effect/affect the light rear break part of the 3 part key...
I.E. In all of Jerry Motorman's training, he emphasizes the use of the rear brake. I rarely use mine (maybe a bad habit?) and seem to do OK. Maybe I'm in denial!
Will the K1200LTR's ABS brakes make it more difficult to take the Ride Like a Pro Class? I'm only 30 miles from the nearest one and next week seems like a good time to take it.
I actually think the HD handles the slow maneuvers easier as the RT tends to get a little 'nose' heavy in slow speed turns like figure eights but I have not really spent much time practicing them with the RT. Like Motorman always repeats, "practice, practice, practice." Thanks for sharing your experience with us.fpolek said:Yes, on an RT. No issues. See my other posts above. The bike handled well on all of the slow exercises, including the figure 8. I, on the other hand, as Borat would say, "...not so much." I can get those handlebars all the way over, but I am a bit gun shy about leaning the bike over during those slow-speed maneuvers. To do a figure 8 well on that bike, you have to get those handlebars fully turned until they won't turn any more, and you must lean the bike a bit, which means picking up the speed. I need more practice to get the confidence to lean it over more. I was able to do the figure 8, but I would usually go out of the cones just a little bit.