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Road Hawg
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Why is it harder to mke a sharp right turn than a sharp left? I have had this problem with every bike I have ever owned.
 

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I don't think it's you , i'm the same way. I also fly RC planes and it's easier to turn left than right. Are you right handed? maybe that has somthing to do with it.
 

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txhawg said:
Why is it harder to mke a sharp right turn than a sharp left? I have had this problem with every bike I have ever owned.
As mori55 said, I think it has a lot to do with being right-handed (your are, right?). I also notice the same thing on a bicycle and snowmobile... even jogging. It's really not more difficult, it's just that right turns feel wrong.

Any left-handers out there who experience the opposite effect?

TGIFF!!!!! :beer4u:
 

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I'm left handed, but I feel more comfortable turning left also. I wonder if it has something to do with driving cars. With the steering wheel on the left, it feels better turning left at high speeds.
How bout you UK folks?
 

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The Alter Ego
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I think it has to do with sharpness of the turn. Right turns are usually 90 degrees where left turns go across the street and are more of an obtuse angle. But then again if you drive on the other side of the street. There goes that theory.
 

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Rock_Steady said:
I think it has to do with sharpness of the turn. Right turns are usually 90 degrees where left turns go across the street and are more of an obtuse angle. But then again if you drive on the other side of the street. There goes that theory.
True, but I even feel the same way on long sweeping curves.

It might indeed have something to do with driving a car from the left side. You realize your visibility isn't as good to the right, so that feeling carrys over to riding a bike. Who knows.....? :dunno:
 

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El Finche Diablo
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Do kids still power slide their bikes to the left?

My first thought on this was that I grew up on pedal-braked bikes and we'd slide them by stomping the right pedal backwards and sliding to the left, eventually planting that foot.

The other theory is that it's easier to control the throttle when it's out and away from you vs. jammed into you in a right turn.

On a quad, I feel like I can anchor myself better on the throttle in a left turn compared to a right turn, probably because I can just grip the inside (left) bar as hard as I want without having to manipulate a throttle that's tucked inside.

Who knows. Interesting, though.


:chopper:
 

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The Alter Ego
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Finch said:
Do kids still power slide their bikes to the left?
You know...based upon the direction that the Earth is spinning. And the torque it generates due to it's massive size. Perhaps turning left is easier because..ehhh...well i'll just stop the *TIBS* right here. Even I wasn't believing me. :whistle:
 

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You're an evildoer.
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Had an MSF Rider Coach ask all of which way was harder to turn. Only the men said right. He said thats normal response.
 

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XLIII
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Back when I was reading all the motocross/dirt bike mags, it seemed to be the general opinion that the Amaricans were the only ones with the Rightturnaphobia.
 

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ALOHA, marooned Doof
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Right on the money...

Finch said:
The other theory is that it's easier to control the throttle when it's out and away from you vs. jammed into you in a right turn..
I have seen this thoughtout many years of teaching (coaching)... when I first start with students, I have them go left first. With their arm farther from their body they are able the obtain smoother throttle control... an therefore gain a greater comfort level with left turns vice right....
Finch said:
On a quad, I feel like I can anchor myself better on the throttle in a left turn compared to a right turn, probably because I can just grip the inside (left) bar as hard as I want without having to manipulate a throttle that's tucked inside.
However, an expereiced rider is able to continue to develop those skills and become comfortable in either direction.

That being said.... even after numerous years of riding, I still enjoy left turns over right....The mind is able to keep a strong hold on those type of feeling/memories.

Punky
 

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Come to think of it.... even race tracks are set up for left turns. There's got to be something scientific about this. I'm just not sure what it is. :blink:
 

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Premium octane member
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left handed here......can scape floorboards going right turn but NEVER left....In my mind i rather go right....
 

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The Alter Ego
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Good Point

ToddM said:
Come to think of it.... even race tracks are set up for left turns. There's got to be something scientific about this. I'm just not sure what it is. :blink:
Perhaps I wasn't as far off as I thought with the below post. Ever notice which way the water goes down the sink at your house. Depends on what side the equator your on as to whether it's right or left. For us Nothern Hemisphere folk it's always to the left. We need someone from Australia or South America to speak up on this one.

Rock_Steady said:
You know...based upon the direction that the Earth is spinning. And the torque it generates due to it's massive size. Perhaps turning left is easier because..ehhh...well i'll just stop the *TIBS* right here. Even I wasn't believing me. :whistle:
 

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What you are experiencing is perfectly normal.

We, as riders, all have a strong side, and a weak side.

Ironicly, when I began motor training, my left side started out as my strong side. Today, it's just the opposite.

Whenever I practice, I make it a point to attack my weak side twice as much as the strong side.

If you, or anyone else, is interested in solving this problem, I have an exercise for you. It is simple to lay out, but it takes many hours of practice to master.

I should note from the start, that the odds of dropping your bike, while practicing this exercise, are very high. If you're not willing to pay this price, then take the next part of what I'm about say for its pure entertainment value.

As the old saying goes, there is no free lunch. You can have a pretty bike, or you can be a strong rider.

( this is the main reason why I have two, one to practice with, and one to simply enjoy.)

I am going to assume, from here on out, that anyone practicing this exercise, already knows how to pick up their own motor, unassisted. Harris recommends wrapping your engine/saddle bag guards up in garden, or firehose. I would remove the saddle bags alltogether during your practice sessions.

You're going to need about 10-12 disc cones. You can find these at any Dick's hardware store for 10-15 bucks. They usually come in orange or red, and fit comfortably inside of a saddle bag.

Find an empty parking lot to practice. One where you will have some privacy, like an industrial park, on a Sunday afternoon.

You want to set the practice cones up, so that they form what looks to be a long, capital letter "T".

You want to measure 10 feet, from the point at which you begin the exercise, ( the bottom of the T ) to the top,middle, point of the "T". Make each side, from the middle, of the top part of the "T", ten feet wide, in both directions.

Again, the bottom of the "T" , is your starting point. You can buy the www.ridelikeapro.com dvd for a video demonstration. I should note that his T's are 12 feet, not 10. He also feathers the rear brake.

I don't.

Now, here is the objective.

From a dead stop, negotiate a left hand turn, without hitting the cones. When you come back, do the same thing, only this time, make a right hand turn.

By the time you master the exercise, you should be able to alternate, in both directions, left, right, left, right..etc..etc..

You want to hold the motor up, just like you would at a stop light, with both hands on the handle bars, your left foot on the ground, and your right foot on the floor board, or foot peg.

NOTE: It is very easy to cheat in this exercise by turning the handle bars, before the motor starts to move....you want to break this habit.

The key to this exercise is head and eye placement.

As you stand at the starting point, you want to turn your head AND eyes, as far to the left, or to the right as possible. You want to almost be looking over your shoulder, at a fixed object. Believe me, if you look at the disc cones in front of you, for even a moment, the motor will go right towards them.

When the motor starts to move, pick your left foot up, put it on the floor board, and physically TURN the handle bars.

Now here is the hard part.

When you begin to execute this exercise correctly, the motor will begin to do something that feels extremely intimidating.

It will LEAN over.

The novice rider will do several things when this happens.

a. He will put his left, or right, foot down.
b. He will look down at the ground.
c. He will grab the front brake
d. He will do all three at the same time....lord knows, I did.

Any combination of these three repsonses usually results in a dropped motor.

Thus, the thing to keep in mind, as your going through the exercise is to keep attacking your fear. Allow the motor to LEAN OVER!..it wants to.

This exercise is very counter intuitive in that you want to do, the exact opposite of what you feel like doing..i.e..keep BOTH feet on the floor boards at all times, do NOT look down. do NOT grab the front brake.

The number one thing to keep in mind, while practicing this exericse, is to not quit. It is very easy to do.

Frustration is likely to set in. It's normal.

Just keep attacking your fear. Patience and determination are the virtues that you'll need most. If you don't quit, and keep hacking away, a beautiful thing will begin to happen....you will start to feel like you are a part of the motor, instead of simply being on the motor.

Fear turns into confidence. Confidence, turns into 7 foot turns, and 7 foot turns are A LOT of fun to make, on a 740 pound bike, when you weigh 155 pounds.

good luck, and God Bless :)

David
 

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Nazzdak said:
When the motor starts to move, pick your left foot up, put it on the floor board, and physically TURN the handle bars.
Interesting. I might have to try that. We've never taught that method in our training courses.

I do have a question though.... are you riding an electric fan or a bench grinder? Those are the "motors" that come to mind at the moment. I think I'd prefer to ride my motorcycle through that course, instead. :D :roflback:
 
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Motor School

Motor Officer

Motor Boots

and Motor Company

"Motor" is a pretty common shorthand reference to motorcycle.

Harris
 

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ToddM said:
Interesting. I might have to try that. We've never taught that method in our training courses.

I do have a question though.... are you riding an electric fan or a bench grinder? Those are the "motors" that come to mind at the moment. I think I'd prefer to ride my motorcycle through that course, instead. :D :roflback:
Todd-

I'm not sure how to respond to your post.

When the subject comes to safe motorcycling, I've never been the light hearted type, so I think it is best, if I just skip over your question.

I've taken both the BRC and the ERC course, and this exercise is not included. I'm confident that it is included, in some form, in the Harley Davidson motor school, for law enforcement officers, but certainly not the MSF/Rider's Edge classes.

Again, if you're going to practice the sharp left/right hand turn exercise, know in advance that it is difficult, and that a lack of concentration and preparation, will most likely lead to a dropped, and/or damaged, motorcycle.

take care,
David
 

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ORIGINAL DOOF BABE
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Nazzdak said:
I've taken both the BRC and the ERC course, and this exercise is not included. I'm confident that it is included, in some form, in the Harley Davidson motor school, for law enforcement officers, but certainly not the MSF/Rider's Edge classes.

Again, if you're going to practice the sharp left/right hand turn exercise, know in advance that it is difficult, and that a lack of concentration and preparation, will most likely lead to a dropped, and/or damaged, motorcycle.

take care,
David
Hey David - thanks for the info! I sure wish I had a second bike to practice with that I wouldn't care about dropping... But I do have an engine guard, so maybe if I wrap it as described and take off the bags I can try this, as well as Harris' lessons. The info from these type of threads has been really helpful to me, and made me realize I need to brush up on some things.

I never got a chance to really learn the limits of a motorcycle since I learned to ride so late and bought a Harley right away. I always wish I could've started learning on a dirt bike or something so I could drop the thing and not care, or at least have bought something crappy to practice on after I learned to ride (hindsight is 20/20).

These kinds of lessons will help me build my confidence and understand how a motorcycle works in different situations, which can only be good.
 
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