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Thread: "Pretty Wife" wants to ride!

  1. #1
    Registered User LENRT1200ST's Avatar
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    "Pretty Wife" wants to ride!

    Ok, for the last few years I’ve been talking to my wife about riding. She has been interested, until just recently! Last week I got a forward e-mail from her and it was a confirmation of her acceptance at a local MSF rider’s course. Wow, I just about dropped my morning coffee cup onto the keyboard! I was so excited for her and proud she’d made this decision on her own.

    I had suggested to her that the MSF would be a good way for her to see if she liked this sort of switch from riding behind me on the R1200GS. We recently switch from a R1200ST to the GS, and this has made riding a whole lot more enjoyable for both of us. Although, I miss the power of the ST, the GS better fits my aging body. She has much better accommodations on the rear of the GS, too. All this is to say that our riding together has improved and has become more frequent.

    The other day after a short spin around the county on some nicely paved back roads, I pulled the bike into a stretch of unused four-lane. This is one of those roads to nowhere, where there’s no traffic and it’s plenty wide enough to turn, etc. She yelled something through her helmet to the effect, “What are we doing?” My reply, “We’re having our first motorcycle riding lesson.”

    I put the GS on the center stand and had her mount up. We went over the basics; front brake, clutch, foot brake, throttle, etc. I then I had her shift the bike in neutral, and dismount as I placed the bike off the center stand and on to the side stand. You see, she has always asked me, why I don’t let her learn to ride on the GS. My concern is that the GS is too heavy and too large (intimidating) for a learning tool. This would be a learning experience for both or us.

    As I steadied the bike, I had her get back in the saddle. She was a little hesitant, but we slowly moved the bike forward at a walking pace. Previously, during her orientation I had told her to practice pulling the clutch and the front brake simultaneously to stop. So, this walking drill was from her to relax on the bike and when I said stop, for her to pull both hand controls and come to a stop.

    After a few times she seemed to get the drill down pat, although at one point we almost lost the GS to a very low speed tip over. She turned too steeply during a low speed right hander, and the GS started to go down! This ended w/ use remounting the bike and riding home. She was very a appreciative of my efforts, but the reality of my concerns for using the GS as a learning toll were now well taken.

    Having said all that, April 9, 10, and 11, 2010 are her school dates. We are searching for a “first bike” for her, but will probably wait until she’s finished the MSF course before we pull the trigger. I’m looking forward to this new adventure for her and for this new journey into a riding relationship.

    Her enthusiasm for riding has taken a huge leap upward sending my pictures of this bike or a piece of a blog she’s found on the net; I wonder what sort of monster I’ve created!

    We’ve been visiting MC shops and she’s talking to salesman, as I try to shuffle off into another area of the shop so as not to overly influence her decisions or bias her choice. She always asks what I think about this or that bike as we’re leaving. She is amazed that the sales person wants to show her the very bike I’ve talked about as a good first bike or I’ve recommended to her on the way to town.

    I’m really excited about this new wrinkle in our relationship. I’m very proud of her for taking this imitative and moving into this unknown world of motorcycling.

    Long post, but I've wanted to tell my MOA brother and sisters about this. I'm stoked!

    Len
    Last edited by lenrt1200st; 04-01-2010 at 04:05 PM.

  2. #2
    Rally Rat
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    It's all in the mind. The decision has to be made by the person looking to take on this sport...not by the partner. Now that she has made her decision to ride...she will have a ball once her confidence overrides her nervousness. You sound very understanding of her and I'm sure you will let her ride her own ride. I think one of the common issues we deal with when first riding with a partner is that we'll hold them up or do something really dumb. The dumb part we work through. Lessen her anxiety about holding you up on the ride.

    Noted that I ride the F650. My first bike. In my opinion it's the perfect first/trainer.

    Congrat's to you both.

  3. #3
    sMiling Voni's Avatar
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    Off to a great start!

    With that first lesson under her belt, she won't be as intimidated at her first MSF class.

    And a new rider is born! Welcome with open arms to our sisterhood, "pretty wife"!

    Voni
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  4. #4
    Survivor akbeemer's Avatar
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    I agree that the F650 thumper is a good bike to learn on and a good bike to keep. Most important in my opinion is that she be able to flat foot the bike while stopped.
    Kevin Huddy
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  5. #5
    Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! kellysbeemer's Avatar
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    Wonderful! Learning to ride has changed my life in so many positive ways and of course the hubby is thrilled because now he gets to do his most favorite thing in the world much more frequently! (^;
    I too took the MSF course and had a blast. I may take it again this year with hubby on our own bikes.
    Have fun!!

  6. #6
    Registered User LENRT1200ST's Avatar
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    All -

    Thank you all for your thoughts and replies. She's in love w/ the KLR 650. You should know she's 6 ft. tall and can "flat foot" must any motorbike better than her husband! She play'd and coached women's basketball before we met.

    I keep getting funny posts in my in-box from her. She's already having waaaay too much fun w/ this. {;0)

    Again thanks for all the in-puts, suggestions, welcomes (Voni), and encouragements. We are shopping for riding attire etc. This is great fun.

    Len

  7. #7
    Registered User womanridge's Avatar
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    She drank the Kool-ade. Yippee! Tell her welcome to the family!
    Karen Jacobs
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  8. #8
    Registered User Bullett's Avatar
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    That's wonderful news! I'm jealous of your wife's height. If she used to coach BB she's probably strong as well. I expect that she can ride any bike she wants. Keep us posted on the progress, new bike (with pictures, of course!), etc.
    Sharon
    '07 R1200RT (my favorite!); '12 Yamaha Super Tenere (El Gordo); '07 Suzuki DR650SE (!);
    '59 R 26 (my first)

  9. #9
    RTGirl
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    Your wife is lucky being vertically enhanced so she just needs to find the bike that "speaks" to her. She will have fun at the MSF course, but will be cramped on the 250s/125s that she will have to ride. This will certainly eliminate either of those as an option for her. Let us know what she decides. If she has any questions about the MSF class, please have her contact me as I am a MSF RiderCoach.

  10. #10
    Registered User lionlady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBeemer View Post
    I agree that the F650 thumper is a good bike to learn on and a good bike to keep. Most important in my opinion is that she be able to flat foot the bike while stopped.
    Light weight is more important than seat height. That flat footing "requirement" can become a crutch/impediment later. Men rarely worry about it. If they want to ride, they'll make what's available work.

    If a new rider's first bike is sufficiently light (such as an f650 or even something like a Nighthawk, etc) being able to get the balls of both feet down is generally enough purchase to maneuver and feel comfortable.

    P
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  11. #11
    Novice Adventurer Newstar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBeemer View Post
    I agree that the F650 thumper is a good bike to learn on and a good bike to keep. Most important in my opinion is that she be able to flat foot the bike while stopped.
    Hmmm! I just happen to know of the perfect bike for her!

    Seriously, she is off to a great start. She will begin the MSF class with more knowledge than I did. I'm sure she will do fine. I agree with you that the 1200 GS is too large for her as a first bike. My 650 was the perfect bike to gain confidence on and I will be sad to see it leave my garage.

    Keep us posted on her progress!

    Tracy

  12. #12
    Registered User LENRT1200ST's Avatar
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    Progress report

    When Bonnie left early Saturday morning, she hinted that the MSF coach said their lunch break would be between noon and 1 pm. So, I rode over to the training site this Saturday to share lunch and see how she was doing. I asked her during lunch if my being there would jeopardize her performance or concentration. both, she and the instructor invited me to stay and observe.

    She seemed excited about the whole process during lunch. Later, it was great to watch her riding around on that little CB 175, after only that morning's orientation; great posture, doing the curves, riding through the various obstacles. I was very proud of her. She came home hungry and IÔÇÖd prepared a chicken and rice dish that she loves. We had some nice white wine and afterward retired to the living room to relax. The evening discussion centered on what key learning she had and then I went over the MSF questions, drilling her on the written portion of tomorrowÔÇÖs testing.

    I was tempted to ride over Sunday, but stayed away to allow her some space and reduce possible performance jitters/pressure. She can home that evening w/ a ÔÇ£passÔÇØ and a certificate allowing her to get a motorcycle endorsement! I was so please w/ her.

    We went out for a nice dinner to celebrate her accomplishment. Today sheÔÇÖs searching the ads for a small motorcycle to practice and honing her new found skills on our cul-de-sac, back roads, and parking lots. We think this is a good plan since she admits to being unsure about the open road at this point in her motorcycling experience.

    Thanks again BMWMOA sisters and family for all your support.

    Len

  13. #13
    sMiling Voni's Avatar
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    And congratulations to her! Glad she knows this is just the start of life long learning!

    Go, Bonnie, go!

    Voni
    sMiling
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  14. #14
    Registered User Becky973's Avatar
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    Another WOMAN

    Yes! Another woman rider great news!

    Becky
    #973

  15. #15
    Registered User womanridge's Avatar
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    Way to go Bonnie. We are stronger by 1.
    Karen Jacobs
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