Monday, July 31, 2017

Ride Your Own Ride

'Ride your own ride.' We've all heard that phrase - when we're new riders, we hear it a lot. Does it still apply once we're no longer new? Indeed, it does. I'm a moderator for two different motorcycle forums - one dedicated to female riders and the other is specific to the Kawasaki Ninja 300. I iterate that phrase at least 5 times a month to strangers. Sometimes I forget to remind those closest to me to do the same thing.

It doesn't matter if you've been riding for 5 days or 50 years - always ride your own ride no matter what. Should you challenge yourself and constantly try to improve your skills? Absolutely, however, never try to do something simply because someone else implies you should in order to keep up with them or a group. I see it far too often - a rider is with a group, someone else takes a corner with a posted speed of 45 mph at 65 mph (or more) and suddenly the next person feels they need to do the same. Next thing you know, they're in over their head. At this point anything can happen - the rider will eek through and scare themselves; they'll eek through it and think they're the next Valentino Rossi with a major ego boost and then have a bigger problem down the road; or, they'll end up losing control and be in a world of hurt.

Don't be the person in a world of hurt, always ride your own ride whether it's your first, fifth, or 5,000th ride. If the folks you're with truly care about you, sure, they might blast through the turn faster than you're comfortable, but they'll slow down for you to catch up on the other side. And, if they don't, that's not anyone you should be riding with in the first place. Never let anyone make you think you need to keep up with them - always be true to you and always, without exception, ride your own ride. And, if you're riding with me, I promise that I'm always going to slow down on the other side of that turn, and rest assured, I'm always going to be watching you in my mirrors because if you're riding with me, it's because I care about you and I'll always be looking out for your best interest.