Even if you pride yourself in abiding by the rules of the road and wearing all of the necessary motorcycle safety gear, the fact is, motorcycle riding is dangerous and you can’t always guarantee your safety. One of the best ways to keep the rubber side down and get to your destination safely is to remember that it is up to you to avoid hazards on the road. Whether you’re going on a short trip to the store or getting ready for a long distance motorcycle ride, you should always be prepared for the unexpected. Avoid unsafe situations and master the art of defensive motorcycle riding with these tips:

    1. Maintain Your Ride and Mind
      Before you even start up your engine, there are ways for you to be a defensive rider. Take care of your bike with regular motorcycle maintenance and motorcycle safety inspections to ensure you don’t run into any issues while on the road. Along with maintaining your bike, it is also important to keep your skills in check. Training doesn’t stop after you get your motorcycle endorsement. There are plenty of motorcycle training classes out there to fit every experience level. Whether you want to gain confidence by attending a motorcycle track day, or sign up for an experienced rider course to improve your street skills and handling techniques, there is something for everyone!
    2. Ride Safely and with Confidence
      Always follow the rules of the road. Be assertive and confident in your maneuvers. Scan the road and be on the lookout for hazards at all times. Keep your eye on other vehicles that may change lanes without seeing you and stay out of blind spots when possible. Assume that other vehicles aren’t driving defensively and may stop or react quickly and without warning. Keep a safe following distance and ride with your headlights on. Always wear the proper motorcycle protective gear – fully cover your body, wear a DOT approved helmet and choose brightly colored gear to avoid blending in with your surroundings.
    3. Know Your Limits and Focus
      Part of being a defensive rider is knowing when it is time to take a break and step off the bike. Whether you’re tired from a long day of riding, or your mind is preoccupied with other stressors from daily life, motorcycle riding requires your undivided attention and if it isn’t there you shouldn’t be on your bike. Even momentary lapses in concentration can result in a crash. Take breaks when you are tired and remember to take a step back and evaluate your riding capabilities.

It’s A Fine Line is an inclusive community of motorcycle riders advocating one common mission: zero motorcycle deaths by 2030. We want to share videos and stories about motorcycle safety, events, rides, clubs, gear and training because we believe that together we can save the lives of our friends, our families and our communities.