Dedicated to the women who RIDE THEIR OWN motorcycles  


by Ambitious Angela

How I learned to ride my own ride!

I started riding last year. Last February my husband bought me a Honda VLX 600 and I took the beginner Rider Ed in April 2002. I was a real virgin as I never drove a stick nor ever rode a motorcycle.

I tried riding the motorcycle before the course but my husband wanted me to do tight circles and I was scared so I opted to wait. Most of the people in the beginner class had riding experience and I was the only true beginner. By Saturday night I had a gut feeling that I was not going to pass. I got so angry that I got on my motorcycle and started doing what we did in class; find the area when the clutch catches. I did this over and over again until I was tired. Back at class on Sunday I was so nervous, I felt that I needed drugs to calm me down and there were no drugs. The instructor just yelled at me constantly, telling me I was doing it wrong.

I was the only one in my class of 12 that failed. I was so humiliated and angry. I started to take slow rides with my husband. Even though he asked me to go the speed limit, I did what was comfortable. I chose rides where the speed limit was 10 to 15 – 25 and stared to build my confidence. I signed up for the Rider Ed class again in July at a different location (I did not want the same instructor).

When I showed up for class there was a woman standing at the door, I asked her if she were my instructor and she said yes… I said out loud “God must love me”. The instructors were great, they said what they needed to say and I heard it. I passed the course.

I also read a lot of articles over the internet, in magazines, I purchased an invaluable book Proficient Motorcycling: The Ultimate Guide to Riding Well by David Hough I took every suggestion, read and ride and that’s what I did.

Today I am grateful that I failed the first class and chose to take it again because I noticed this spring when I went out for my first ride, I heard those voices, look, lean and roll…. Look where you want to go….all 4 fingers on breaks or throttle not both.

I feel lucky today I have those instincts that are becoming second nature and they are good habits.

I love riding and riding safety especially. So I ride my own ride, leave enough space so that I am comfortable. I look forward to a great second season of riding.

Rubber side down to all new riders.

Other noteworthy books by David Hough:

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From Angela: "I started riding a Honda Shadow 600 VLX and this year I moved up to a Harley-Davidson 2001 1200 Custom Sport."

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