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Thread: Bike for beginner wife

  1. #1
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    Default Bike for beginner wife

    Dear fellow riders. My wife wants to ride with me over weekends and finished her beginner course with BMW Motorrad Academy. We are now deciding on the right bike for her. The weekend rides won't involve distances over 100km, but is likely to involve some freeway riding. She proved capable of riding the BMW 310R, but felt more comfortable riding the Yamaha R3. She is short and refuses to try riding bikes not allowing her feet on the ground. She tried a 600cc bike the other day, but the tippy toes and fear of power scared her off. I told her to get the R3 and ride it for a year to learn and get experience. What advice is there for the ladies? Btw she has all the gear.

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  2. #2
    "Master Yoda". Banditman's Avatar
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    Hi there,

    As a new rider she'll need time to build her confidence and polish her skills, even though she's gone through a good training academy. That just laid the foundations. It didn't make her instantly expert. Where us more experienced riders often get it wrong is in forgetting that new riders need time to get comfortable doing what we do without thinking. Some of my trainees have adapted very quickly while others need more time and have often come back for further beginner's training until they feel happier by themselves.

    You're going to need to put yourself in a shepherd role for a while, which means watching out for traffic for her as well as giving grace for the more sedate rides in the beginning. If you don't already have bluetooth comms it'd be a wise investment for you both. You'll be able to give early warnings, easy guidance and - most importantly - talk her calmly through tricky situations.

    There's absolutely nothing wrong with a bike like the R3 if she's comfortable with it. Good advice on your part, sir. Its in the same basic performance band as the G310R in any case. If you're thinking of something with a bit more legs and she likes the R3, then why not look for a clean used CBR500? A bit more go and basically the same riding position. You could also consider the G310GS, Ninja 300, Z 300, Versys X-300 and KTM Duke 390, both in new and used forms along with the CBR300.

    Once she's polished in her riding skills she won't worry about the tiptoes thing as much, and even then you can often get a bike lowered slightly and inexpensively to suit her.

  3. #3
    Lightship Captain
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    I am a fan of fitting the riders preferred riding position and their physical geometry to a bike. For most of us the bikes all go and stop and perform their duties required of them.
    Then look at fairings or naked etc.

    You have the right thoughts and as they are being backed up by a highly regarded trainer then you are on the right track.

    Changing bikes as time passes is also part of the journey.
    All my posts are my opinion and not those of TB or TB Marshals or any other sane human

  4. #4
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    Through hard experience - get her what she likes and wants - otherwise she will never ride it. Good luck - hope this works out as I would rather my wife on her own bike than pillion - more fun.

  5. #5
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    I am grateful for all the input, really. Confidence and experience gained with small bikes should ease the transition later. Heck, I myself stated out in my youth with 50cc's, 80cc, 125, 250, 500 etc, so I suppose its only fair not to push her into a 600+ cc as a new rider. I was just fortunate that vehicles were much slower and fewer back in the day, which made biking easier. Thanks again folks.

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  6. #6
    Legend in the baking. ColleenC's Avatar
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    Great to hear your wife is keen to ride her own bike
    Definitely don't push her to do what you want her to do. She'll wind up in an accident and then never want to ride again.
    If possible let her find some ladies to ride with who she can go off on her own with every now and again without you. I notice a big difference in the confidence levels of ladies who ride only with their spouses vs the ones who make friends who ride and go out and venture off on their own every now and again. Even if you are married you might not enjoy the same type of riding - a lot of the guys want to go off on crazy fast breakfast runs and unfortunately a new rider significant other can end up being pushed to go too fast too soon and wind up not enjoying riding at all. Let her take the lead on what she wants to do with her riding and how quickly she wants to progress and soon you will have an awesome biking buddy or one who wants to go out and ride with her own friends while you do your thing with yours. Either way it will work for you both Happy riding to both of you
    "What's worth the prize is always worth the fight" Nickelback


  7. #7
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    I'm a very small lady and worked my way up through the Maxi Scooters from a 150cc to a 600cc Honda. Do yourself a favour and let your wife ride the SYM 300 evo - I guarantee she will love it. As WBro says changing your bike as you evolve is part of biking.
    "Most motorcycle problems are caused by the nut that connects the handlebars to the saddle!"

  8. #8
    Nuon Fangirl

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    Quote Originally Posted by Banditman View Post
    Hi there,

    As a new rider she'll need time to build her confidence and polish her skills, even though she's gone through a good training academy. That just laid the foundations. It didn't make her instantly expert. Where us more experienced riders often get it wrong is in forgetting that new riders need time to get comfortable doing what we do without thinking. Some of my trainees have adapted very quickly while others need more time and have often come back for further beginner's training until they feel happier by themselves.

    You're going to need to put yourself in a shepherd role for a while, which means watching out for traffic for her as well as giving grace for the more sedate rides in the beginning. If you don't already have bluetooth comms it'd be a wise investment for you both. You'll be able to give early warnings, easy guidance and - most importantly - talk her calmly through tricky situations.

    There's absolutely nothing wrong with a bike like the R3 if she's comfortable with it. Good advice on your part, sir. Its in the same basic performance band as the G310R in any case. If you're thinking of something with a bit more legs and she likes the R3, then why not look for a clean used CBR500? A bit more go and basically the same riding position. You could also consider the G310GS, Ninja 300, Z 300, Versys X-300 and KTM Duke 390, both in new and used forms along with the CBR300.

    Once she's polished in her riding skills she won't worry about the tiptoes thing as much, and even then you can often get a bike lowered slightly and inexpensively to suit her.
    What he said.

    It is important that she chooses between the options though.

  9. #9
    Biker

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    I totally understand where your wife is coming from. I'm average in height and when I test rode the BMW F800GSA, my toes barely touched the ground and it was on the lowest suspension!!!! It totally freaked me out. I'm also more comfortable with my feet solidly on the ground, thank you very much!

    As for the power thing, I get that too. After doing training with BMW Motorrad as well, I got my Suzuki GW250. She's an awesome commuter bike and I regularly do trips on the highway as well where she can do 120 quite nicely. I have, since getting her (I've only been riding for 3 years) been on test rides at SA Bike Fest but must say that really high powered CCs are still kinda scary. So I mainly test rode bikes that had a maximum of 800cc. I even test rode the BMW R1200GS and despite the fact that enjoyed it, I must say that if I do upgrade it wouldn't be straight to a bike like that, but something of a smaller CC. I really liked the Suzuki DL650, Suzuki SV650 and the Yamaha MT07.
    But I agree with the comments above, as it's only since I've been riding my 250cc everyday that I feel comfortable enough to try riding other bikes. It just feels more comfortable and safer that way, for me at least.

    Hope you find her a great ride and that you enjoy spending the time riding together! Safe travels!

    P.S. Please keep us posted when you find something for her!

  10. #10
    Nuon Fangirl

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    One thing that is fact is that as you become more comfortable with riding, build more self confidence, etc. you will reach a stage where having both feet flat on the ground becomes unimportant to you. At that point, a person is ready for a bigger bike.

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