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Discussion Starter #1
Heading into the new year, are there any specific "NEW" techniques that you wish to learn more about or try this year? Having had the chance to ride Aragon in Spain in October, I was working on understanding engine braking a bit more and combining it better with trail braking. What are some things that you guys want to know/understand more and what are you planning on working on with your own riding?
 

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Ah Misti, there you are again - asking us to think about what we are doing.

I ride a lot of the same roads, county two lanes that I know well and are fun to challenge. There are numerous downhill twisters that always are wanting engine braking carefully applied. Then I ride them in a reverse loop, which is more fun on the Thrux when you pour on the torque. I learned a lot about engine braking from riding the Meriden Triumphs since the brakes were not that great, nothing like current stuff.

I guess its my own hamster wheel, but the goal is constant improvement in riding the bike, not sightseeing.

Keep your head in the game everyone,

Weedie
 

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Not exactly new --

Last season I was with (too large) a group of friends and we were coming north on the Blue Ridge Parkway. On or about the last day of the ride I was having all kinds of stomach issues and found myself having to make multiple stops. One nice thing about the Blue Ridge Parkway is that you can't really get lost. So, I told the group to ride ahead and I'd catch up.

Net effect, I rode for about an hour blissfully alone. Not having to worry about someone running into me from behind, or someone in front of me braking I was really able to flow with the road and for that hour (minus a chipmunk or two) I never used my brakes, I just used the engine to slow for corners and it felt amazing.

So this year I really want to spend more time learning as much as I can (in practice) about engine braking and utilizing the engine to keep the chassis stabilized. Still going to keep covering the front brake, but it was joyous to never use it.
 

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I nearly dropped the bike doing a u-turn with loaded panniers. I also dropped the bike at 3mph making a right turn onto a gravel road with elevation change. I want to focus on my low speed maneuvering and transitioning as I do a few camping trips with the bike. (3 last year and hope to do more this year)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Net effect, I rode for about an hour blissfully alone. Not having to worry about someone running into me from behind, or someone in front of me braking I was really able to flow with the road and for that hour (minus a chipmunk or two) I never used my brakes, I just used the engine to slow for corners and it felt amazing.

So this year I really want to spend more time learning as much as I can (in practice) about engine braking and utilizing the engine to keep the chassis stabilized. Still going to keep covering the front brake, but it was joyous to never use it.
Sounds lovely! Can you explain how using engine braking helps to keep the chassis stabilized? Love that you were able to notice the difference in your riding alone and that you took something from that moment to help improve your riding in the future.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I nearly dropped the bike doing a u-turn with loaded panniers. I also dropped the bike at 3mph making a right turn onto a gravel road with elevation change. I want to focus on my low speed maneuvering and transitioning as I do a few camping trips with the bike. (3 last year and hope to do more this year)
That's quite a common mistake. What are some things you can do to help with slow speed maneuvers? What do you think is the thing that people do in those situations that make it more likely that they will drop the bike? Does it have to do with how hard you use the brake or what you are looking at?
 

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Not really a new technique, but ...

I want to work on my feet and legs more while cornering. I feel pretty good about my shoulders, head, eyes, and hands (loose on the bars). I want to feel more comfortable that I always maneuver my feet into proper position while going into corners. I also want to experiment with pushing on the foot pegs to assist my cornering.

FYI -- I did the California Super Bike School, but did not have you for my coach. It was a great experience, especially the vision drills. Really helped me gain confidence while going into tight and blind corners.

Thanks for bringing your experience here.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I want to work on my feet and legs more while cornering. I feel pretty good about my shoulders, head, eyes, and hands (loose on the bars). I want to feel more comfortable that I always maneuver my feet into proper position while going into corners. I also want to experiment with pushing on the foot pegs to assist my cornering.

FYI -- I did the California Super Bike School, but did not have you for my coach. It was a great experience, especially the vision drills. Really helped me gain confidence while going into tight and blind corners.

Thanks for bringing your experience here.
Alright, so let's take a look at what you should be going with your feet and legs. Can you describe what your goal is with your legs while riding?

And, awesome about doing CSS! Were you the one that introduced yourself to me or not? You should have!! Hahah, what track did you do?
 

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Alright, so let's take a look at what you should be going with your feet and legs. Can you describe what your goal is with your legs while riding?

And, awesome about doing CSS! Were you the one that introduced yourself to me or not? You should have!! Hahah, what track did you do?
OK, so say I am going into a right hand corner.

So, while I am getting in position for the corner, I put my left foot so that the peg is right in front of the boot heel. Then I push forward to help secure my left knee to the tank. At the same time, I put my the ball of my right foot onto the right peg. Then, when I turn toward the apex I apply pressure downward with the right foot at the same time that I counter steer with the right hand.

That is the ideal, anyway. I often don't make that ideal, and that is why I need to work on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
OK, so say I am going into a right hand corner.

So, while I am getting in position for the corner, I put my left foot so that the peg is right in front of the boot heel. Then I push forward to help secure my left knee to the tank. At the same time, I put my the ball of my right foot onto the right peg. Then, when I turn toward the apex I apply pressure downward with the right foot at the same time that I counter steer with the right hand.

That is the ideal, anyway. I often don't make that ideal, and that is why I need to work on it.
What is the reason you mention pushing down on the right peg while also counter-steering into the right turn? What steers the bike? Does pressure on the footpeg make any difference to how well or effectively you can steer the bike?
 

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What is the reason you mention pushing down on the right peg while also counter-steering into the right turn? What steers the bike? Does pressure on the footpeg make any difference to how well or effectively you can steer the bike?
Well, clearly counter steering is the way the bike is turned, but adding pressure to the foot peg appears to give an assist. I am not sure why, but I definitely feel that loading the inside footpeg helps. Perhaps it helps lean the bike over quicker, making it more like a quick flick. Perhaps it just helps get to and maintain lean angle. The most likely answer is that it just adds extra pressure on the front tire for counter steering the bike, so that your foot assists your hand--in the same way pulling with the opposite hand at the same time can assist.
 
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