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Old 03-11-2013, 12:11 PM   #345
Lion BR
I'd rather be riding
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Joined: Oct 2005
Location: Oregon
Oddometer: 4,132
Originally Posted by the Pheasant View Post
Since my last post on this thread I have been playing around at countersteering - plenty of opportunity; I'm currently working as a moto courier - and found I was doing the following:

I regularly use a long left-hand slip road, completing 270deg or so, that leads on to a dual carriageway. It's a safe(er) chance to practice left-hand bends, which in the UK are potentially risky compared to right-handers since the tendency, if drifting wide, is to run into oncoming traffic. Also, we get plenty of practice at right-handers on roundabouts.

This slip road's curve tightens slightly as it reaches the dual carriageway. Anyway, I found that, at maximum lean, I was trying to 'steer' the bike around the last, tighter part of the curve by turning the bars to the left, despite being aware of countersteering and using it consciously to initiate turns. The result was a drift towards the gravelly stuff on the outside.

Seems to me that, while it is easy enough to get the hand of countersteering to start a turn - since it is what we do anyway, consciously or not - it may take a lot more mental effort right on the limit. This was my experience on this bend, for sure. I didn't find myself doing the same on similar right-handers, maybe because, until recently, I was getting less practice at bigger lean angles while turning left.
And that is why it is important to have this conversation. That is why counter-steering threads keep coming up. It is not an intuitive process at first, but it is an important concept. I guarantee you, with increasing consciousness about what it does and how it works, and then practicing every time you go for a ride, it will become second nature. And that's where you want to be when riding. As a result it will increase your ability to ride on curves, it will increase your safety margins (or your speed), and it will be a lot more fun to ride on twisty roads.
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