Updated: Aug 16, 2022
If you're struggling with your motorcycle, this is why you should get professional help from a rider coach sooner rather than later!
A few weeks ago, I had a short email dialogue with someone who had recently returned to biking, and had a common problem - a lack of confidence especially, he said "with cornering and making progress on sweeping country roads".
And then things went a bit quiet...
...until a day or two ago, when I got another mail essentially saying "not confident enough to do training".
I wrote back explained that exactly the RIGHT time to do confidence training is when we're lacking confidence!
And it's not because I'd like to see this rider a course (although that's always useful for my bank balance). Frankly, I really would recommend some confidence-building training sooner rather than later, because confidence issues are horrible.
They really spoil our enjoyment of riding, and if the reason for the lack of confidence is some area of skill or technique that's lacking, then potentially that puts us at risk too.
When we have a riding issue and we try to ride around it hoping it will go away if we give it long enough, we rarely fix it.
In fact, frequently we end up making things worse as we try to avoid the problem, and even worse, we almost always turn it into a mental block which is far harder to sort out when we eventually get round to it.
Frequently riders try to fix the issues by swapping bikes, which is rarely cheap and almost never solves the riding issues.
In extreme cases, riders who struggle on even abandon riding altogether after scaring or depressing themselves too much.
And that's the reason for the existence of the Confidence: BUILDER one-course; it is specifically for riders who don't feel confident on the road.
The Confidence: BUILDER is very much designed as a 'low pressure' session, very different from the pressure of basic training or even working with the IAM come to that. It also stands alone - you'll get a lot of benefit out of the day and it will prepare you to move onto advanced training, either with me or with someone else.
We get together on Zoom, have a chat about your experience, you tell where you think the problem is, we'll discuss how that might affect your riding and what you can do about it, then I cover a bit of theory to help you understand what we'll be doing in the on-road session.
Then we meet up at whichever start point is most convenient to you, and then we go for a short ride whilst I assess your riding. The rest of the session takes you over some carefully chosen roads where I can offer you coaching in the areas you thought you were weak, and anything else I spotted during the assessment ride. That session lasts about four hours.
And we finish off with another (optional) Zoom meeting and I'll also upload some video of your ride.
Of course, it's always hard to persuade someone to spend time and money on rider training, but the reactions of trainees after a course speaks volumes.
Here's what Joanna said after taking a Confidence: BUILDER one-day course:
"Have just done a confidence builder as I struggled with tight corners, roundabouts and cornering. What a great couple of hours, I went away feeling confident on the tight turns and the cornering and roundabouts. I would highly recommend Kevin, he was very patient and explained things clearly and demonstrated so it was easy to follow. Would definitely book with again for another course."
So if you're reading this and thinking "I'd like (even NEED) to ride better but not sure if a course would fix it", have another think about the sort of training I've just described.
And there's one more very good reason. Right now, we've got almost all the summer riding season in front of you. Fix it now, and you'll be in a better place to enjoy it.