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Old 09-23-2012, 10:29 AM   #46
slartidbartfast
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Originally Posted by RMZMZM View Post
It is unfortunate you feel the instructor was not professional with the manner he spoke to you.

As an instructor myself, what you have described is exactly what the MSF Beginning Rider's Course is supposed to be. MSF provides a script and a schedule. If the instructor spent 45 minutes or more before telling you that you were not progressing, then he was most likely properly following MSF guidelines.

...
Following the curriculum correctly is not everything. You still need the patience and attitude necessary to work with students of all abilities and personalities. Fortunately, I think most coaches are pretty good in that respect but some are better than others and we all have good days and bad days. I sometimes find the slow progress of certain students frustrating. However, I try not to lose sight of the fact that some people just pick things up faster than others and there can be a lot of non-obvious reasons for people finding things difficult. Something as simple as having a family member watching can make some people so nervous they are unable to perform. Figuring out what is causing the block can work magical results.

Often, a bit of extra work in the first few exercises gives a struggling student the basics necessary to allow them to continue on. Sometimes, however, there is simply not enough time or it is fairly obvious that a particular student is not progressing yet the class has to go on. For obvious reasons, learning basic balance and clutch control skills is essential to safely continue through the class.

It's not uncommon to find women pushed into the course by a (presumably) well-meaning spouse or boyfriend, who really don't want to be there and who will not make any effort in the hope of quickly getting it over with.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tedder View Post
Generally you get the book in advance. Most students, even those who have never seen a motorcycle or used a clutch, find that 10-20 minutes of waddling across the range is sufficient to learn the basics. Still, it isn't for everyone...
Very few students who are in reasonable physical and mental condition and who can at least ride a bicycle (and have done so relatively recently) do not build the necessary skills in the first few minutes of the first few exercises. Those who do not get through this stage are usually extremely physically unfit or for some reason unable (or unwilling) to pay attention or focus. If I explain something to someone twice, demonstrate it for them, coach them through it a few times, they are surrounded by other people doing it right, yet they still seem unable to "get it", there are limited options remaining. In some cases simple things like adjusting a clutch or making someone take a break to cool off and get a drink of water are the key but in other cases, counseling them out is best for all concerned. Also, here in Louisiana, if a student is struggling with the heat in the first couple of exercises when it's 80F and I know it's going to hit 95+ as the day wears on, in my experience it is both pointless and hazardous for that person to encourage them to continue.
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Old 09-23-2012, 10:39 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by Mrs6gun View Post
I signed up for a beginner MSF course which started today........blah blah blah....
Wait a minute...

It's a fucking THREE day course and you're already bitching on the first day and demanded a refund?

jesus H. Krist on a biscuit, what color is your Subaru?
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Old 09-23-2012, 10:54 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by slartidbartfast View Post
...snipped... counseling them out is best for all concerned. ....
I helped around 1800 riders in 14 years. Never, ever did I "counsel" a rider out. I viewed it as a weakness on my part if they weren't getting it.

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Old 09-23-2012, 10:54 AM   #49
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Pissed :stfu UglyPrimate

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Old 09-23-2012, 11:14 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by Uglyprimate View Post
It's a fucking THREE day course and you're already bitching on the first day and demanded a refund?
Second day.
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Old 09-23-2012, 11:40 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by dolomoto View Post
I helped around 1800 riders in 14 years. Never, ever did I "counsel" a rider out. I viewed it as a weakness on my part if they weren't getting it.

Good for you!

You are the first RC I have ever come across that hasn't had to let someone go from their class (although you are not claiming a 100% success rate so maybe you have another term for it.) I can't say it happens very often but it does happen - and I don't usually feel great about it. Even if someone commits an act that should result in instant dismissal, I still try to let them down gently and the best way to do that with most people is help them to realize that today is not their day and have them remove themselves from the course. That's what I mean by "counsel out". It is preferable to having them continue and possibly injure themselves or others.
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Old 09-23-2012, 11:44 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by slartidbartfast View Post
Good for you! I have never come across a RC before that hasn't had to let someone go from their class.
Yeah, it seems suspicious to me too. Even if it's only "1 in 1800", there are students who are a danger to themselves and other students.
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Old 09-23-2012, 11:45 AM   #53
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my now ex-wife had a bad experience when she took MSF, her experience was similar, riding as pillon only. when she wanted to learn to be an operator I insisted that she take MSF rather than me or friends trying to teach her our bad habits

I'm not sure if its cause she looped a GN125 or didn't understand what they were saying, the sent her packing after the first half day on the range and told her to get some experience before she came back ?? wtf, I sure as hell wasn't goint to let her practice on my SV650, at 4'-11" she couldn't even get one tippy toe down

she was anxious to learn, we found a CM250 for cheap money, I contacted a MSF instructor friend of mine and he provied her with free private tudoring in our local HS parking lot one sunday afternoon, my friend couldn't understand why they sent her packing, she was one of the best students he ever had

what confused my wife the most was how they described shifting and clutch action. She could drive standard transmission cage (car, truck, stick, 3 on tree, etc. no problem, very experienced)

after that one afternoon with private tudoring the next sunday, I brought her to the school complex to practice, in 3 hours time, she put over 75 miles on her CM250 without even leaving the parking lot, a few weeks later she took the MC test, passed easily. everytime she runs into the MSF coach that sent her home, she still sez hes an asshole
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Old 09-23-2012, 12:02 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by 2handedSpey View Post
To the OP... It's a motorcycle safety course.

Not a "make me know how to ride a motorcycle in 2 days" course.
Actually...it is. AND if you do it right you'll be a fully endorsed/licensed rider after completion. Yeah, kinda scares us Instructor/RC types as well. If you're enamored of bold then remember it's the Basic Rider Course. Basic as in "never sat on a bike before."

Freaky scary ain't it? 10 hours on the range and you get a license waiver and the DMV will give you a license once you take the DMV written...
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Old 09-23-2012, 12:20 PM   #55
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Hang in there. Defiantly do some "home study" before you go out again. I bet you could find a couple of places where there are rider testing courses, the ones painted in the parking lot of DMV for example or maybe your community college. Get ol'6gun to take you out there and just tool around to get some familiarity. IT IS NOT meant to replace the MSF course.

One of my ex-girlfriends was very adamant about wanting to learn how to ride. She fell pretty hard for motorcycling after she started hanging out with my friends and I. She ordered a custom made padded Langlitz and bought a Honda Hawk which stayed in the garage until she got up to speed so to speak. I showed her where everything was and explained it all out. I had her sit on it and dry practice. We went through little quiz sessions to test theory.

She enrolled in the MSF course and used their bikes. The instructor was a major with a huge ego. His name was Rusty or Red, something like that, the course was over by Universal City/Los Angeles, CA. Anyway, he brought her and a few others to tears a few times. After the first day, I told her to ignore him the best she could or she reschedule the course somewhere else. She pushed on and got over it.

We'd go over to the old Farmer's Market parking lot (before they built The Grove) on off-days and I'd have her tool around in the emptiness there just practising basic manoeuvring.

She passed the course and got her endorsement a few weeks later. Every free moment she had, she'd want to go out and ride. She eventually became a pretty competent rider and she loved that Honda Hawk!

You can do it too. The world is full of shitters, just step around them and move on.
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Old 09-23-2012, 12:28 PM   #56
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I know a several MSF instructors who are really compassionate and caring people, as well as thoroughly professional. I an sure there are some who are not. I've had lengthy discussions regarding teaching women to ride with a lady friend who is going taking her MSF instructor's course next summer.

Learning to ride is different for women. Depending of the age of the student and their geographic location, a woman may not have prior motorcycling experience at all. Many men have ridden quite a lot before taking the course, on dirt bikes or whatever. If an instructor expects this level of experience, it can be bad for a true beginner.

Women's physical strength is also distributed differently than men's.

I think the alternative is worse. Here in Vermont, you can take a simple written test and receive your learner's permit. You can then go ride anything your heart desires, anywhere in the state, so long as you ride during the day and don't carry a passenger.

With zero experience, you're entitled to go off and kill yourself. I've seen riders who can barely control their bikes become fully licensed.

While the MSF program is not perfect, it certainly is better than the alternative.

If you have very little two-wheel experience, have you considered getting a scooter for your initial forays? This removes the clutching and shifting issues. Scooters generally have a low center of gravity, and so are easier for some women to control. And, if you want to progress to a larger and more powerful machine, the largest scooters are as capable of long-distance touring as most motorcycles.

The friend mentioned above rode to Wyoming and back, a distance of over 5000 miles with her daughter on pillion. She's an accomplished rider, and owns three other bikes. She rides about 20,000 miles a year. Given the low center of gravity of the scooter and the ease of maneuvering it with a passenger, she simply felt it was the correct tool for the job. It did the run without any difficulties.
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Old 09-23-2012, 12:59 PM   #57
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I'm going to say something that you're probably not going to like. The street isn't the place for ANYONE to learn how to ride a motorcycle.

Go buy yourself a used 100cc dirtbike and the appropriate gear then go find a field and lean how to ride the thing without seriously hurting yourself. I can promise you that you are going to fall down. Once you get good on the 100 go back and take the course on a steet bike. Most beginners I see start out on way too much bike. I can't tell you how many folks I see starting out on big, heavy street bikes they have no business on.

I started both my son and daughter out on the 50. My son started when he was 4. Now that he's 16 and has 12 years of riding under his belt I still have really mixed feelings about him riding on the street.

Don't give up. Good Luck
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Old 09-23-2012, 01:18 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by 6gun View Post
They are granting her a refund which is great. It is very difficult for her to schedule due to her work so hopefully she can find another class before end of season. She wants to ride some during winter and I won't let her touch pavement till BRC is completed! Thanks for everyone's input and keep'em coming. All names from me are good natured!
No reason for you not to work with her and no reason to keep her off of pavement. Even after she passes the BRC she'll need to practice. Just find a open parking lot, some Harley dealers have ranges and I use then by my self and have never been asked to leave.

Start slow, let her dictate how fast you proceed go over controls, then rocking with the friction zone then the dreaded power walk. I'm sure you both remember enough of the BRC to make the next time a lot easier.

I agree the coach sounds like twat waffle and that the class should have more beginners than experienced riders but due to state regs a lot of experienced riders have to go back and take the BRC (BOO).
As a rider coach I have access to the course materials, let PM me if I can help. In my experience most rider coaches just want to share the ride. I'm truly sorry you got a bad one, counseling someone out is the last thing we should do.
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Old 09-23-2012, 01:19 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by tedder View Post
Yeah, it seems suspicious to me too. Even if it's only "1 in 1800", there are students who are a danger to themselves and other students.
I reckon we'll just have to disagree. I can name 3-4 other RC who've also never counseled a rider out.

If you're gonna call me a Liar, just go ahead and do so.

I cut my teeth on the RSS and then transitioned to the BRC/ERC and watched many fine Instructors quit rather than "facilitate" the riders in BRC. As for me, helping riders learn life saving skills became a passion.

I've started classes early and went as late as 8pm if the rider was willing to stay.

I really hate to hear about the RC's that think just because they are a RC, then they know best.

IMO, counseling a rider out is a failure on the RC. We're not teaching people to build the space shuttle, we're helping riders learn Basic motorcycle skills. Maybe more RC's should run the exercises longer...or even run them twice instead of "counseling" riders out.
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Old 09-23-2012, 01:36 PM   #60
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Well, I applaud the OP for admitting her failure in public. We learn from our mistakes and admitting them is the key.

Funny, when I took my MSFclass, nearly 40% of the class failed. Yep. Failed. They weren't taking almost or closies that weekend.

One gal was told numerous times to wear shoes / boots over the ankle, guess who "forgot." and washed out. Right there. Then there was the 65 year old genius who was the loud mouth during the classroom sessions. Yep. Mr know it all-washout. Then there was the guy who had been racing mx since he was 7, he felt he didn't need to listen, study or read. Yep. He washed out. Failed the written test and guess what, COULDN'T WEAVE SLOWLY THROUGH THE CONES!
Of course there was the girl with a cute pocket ninja looking bike in a pink Fox leather jacket, she all kind of failed. Couldnt figure out that the left hand controlled the clutch & kept trying to use her left foot to brake... Etc etc.. Kind of that "baby boomer-I'm so special-the world owes me" type thing which was remarkable to witness.

The way I see it, if you wash out, they are NOT worried about your feelings, it's not a popularity contest, & they probably dont need anymore friends. They are there to save lives. Can't keep up? Maybe motorcycling isn't for you. If you still believe it is, again, get a small bike, a flat grassy field, someone willing to spend time with you helping you learn how to ride a bike. THEN let the "mother Fuck3r" (as you called him) judge your skills and assement.


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