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Old 10-20-2012, 05:46 PM   #466
Mrs6gun OP
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Glad to know to that you seem to know me so well!

For the record, I am not a whiner. However, I am glad you seem to know me so well, As for my husband, he does not want any part in teaching me how to ride. You may not understand this, but it is what it is. This thread was about a bad experience with a sucky coach. The coach was a lazy, arrogant jerk who did not want to do his job. I guess I stepped on some toes with my thread and have met a lot of "trolls" on Advrider. I am not a failure. I actually have enough brains to teach myself how to ride and that is what I am doing quite successfully.


Quote:
Originally Posted by slartidbartfast View Post
a) is flat wrong and was stated by people with no idea what they were talking about! The BRC is absolutely intended for new learners who have not been on a motorcycle before (with the possible exception of someone can't ride a bicycle - but then they really should know better - and may be able to learn anyway)

b) may be true for some rare and particularly challenged individuals.

c) depends on the coach, the course provider's policies, other conditions such as weather, and the extent to which the student needs additional help.

d) may be true - but the course is still intended to start from the most basic principles. Those who can already manage the basic controls and have reasonable clutch control and balance skills just have to be patient through the first couple of exercises. If they are open-minded they will probably still learn something.


By the time she got to the first riding exercise, the OP should have read about and discussed the controls several times, watched a video describing the controls, probably been shown, and had several minutes of coaching through control location and operation while sitting on a motorcycle. Furthermore, she has a husband who rides and has been on the back of a bike many times - No good excuses at that point unless she is very seriously learning-challenged or slept through most of the class.

The teaching method utilized is guided learning rather than lecturing. This is a very effective adult learning method. The coach will ask questions, maybe by referring to written questions in the book, and facilitate discussion. The answers to most questions are in the book but not directly - you have to read and comprehend to get to them. Of course, an inattentive student who is not engaged in the class (possibly because of a poor coach) will not get as much out of it.


No BRC coaches stated that - other people who are not coaches stated that, and they were wrong. I can't speak for every MSF-trained coach out there, but all the coaches I know will try their best to impart as much as possible to even those they believe are hopeless cases. I won't "bounce someone out" of class unless IMO they are a danger to themselves or other students and even then, I do everything I can to let them down gently and encourage most to come back for another try.

There will be some jaded, cynical coaches out there who do not enjoy the vocation, or who are having a bad day. The law of averages dictates that a few true assholes are going to make it through the process to become coaches but I've never met one. Even the few whom I don't like personally still seem pretty committed to their students.

The OP may well have had a poor coach but even so, I believe she was largely responsible for her own failure to make it through and her whining about it is simply because she is a whiner. Still, she sparked off a good thread with some interesting discussions about various people's perceptions of basic training courses and the instruction of same.
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Old 10-20-2012, 06:51 PM   #467
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mrs6gun View Post
For the record, I am not a whiner. However, I am glad you seem to know me so well, As for my husband, he does not want any part in teaching me how to ride. You may not understand this, but it is what it is. This thread was about a bad experience with a sucky coach. The coach was a lazy, arrogant jerk who did not want to do his job. I guess I stepped on some toes with my thread and have met a lot of "trolls" on Advrider. I am not a failure. I actually have enough brains to teach myself how to ride and that is what I am doing quite successfully.
This thread ceased being about you and your situation many pages ago. It has evolved into a thread discussing msf and its curriculum. I am sorry that your relationship w/your hubby will not accommodate teaching and learning from each other. You continue to slander your original coach, yet seem unwilling to describe exactly what he did to earn such scorn, this, in part, may be some of the reason that a few have assumed that you may have been a problem student.

I am glad to hear you are progressing. Let us know when you get your endorsement and how the self instruction is going.
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glasswave screwed with this post 10-20-2012 at 07:27 PM
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Old 10-20-2012, 08:21 PM   #468
dwoodward
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Advntr View Post
A motorcycle is a motor vehicle and is entitled to the whole lane. Having any vehicle less than 3 seconds ahead of you or following you is dangerous. Doesn't the driving handbook for cages specify one vehicle length for every 10 mph of speed...
Let's just process that a bit.

Let's say, for argument's sake, a car is 20 feet long. At 60mph, you'd be 60/10 * 20 = 120 feet behind the car in front of you.

60mph = 88 feet / second (I'll leave the math for that one as an exercise for the reader). 3 seconds is 264 feet, more than double "one car length for every 10mph".

Then there's reality, where, if one is in traffic, one feels blessed to maintain a full second's worth of gap and watches not just the car in front, but at least two cars in front of that one.

As for what MSF suggests when riding in a group, there's are reasons to cut your margins down if you INSIST on riding in a parade- personally, I tend to avoid groups as much as possible, which is quite a lot.
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Old 10-21-2012, 07:02 PM   #469
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Originally Posted by Advntr View Post
Hey coaches...that's another thing...coaches, acronyms and mindless rhetoric about motorcyle riding...please discuss the MSF's riding with the herd protocol of being less than 2 seconds behind and in front of the other motorcycles in the herd. Put me in the herd coach I'm ready to crash

Look it up, it's on the web.

A motorcycle is a motor vehicle and is entitled to the whole lane. Having any vehicle less than 3 seconds ahead of you or following you is dangerous. Doesn't the driving handbook for cages specify one vehicle length for every 10 mph of speed...
Your profile says "western New York", so I'm going to guess that part of New Your has not many people in it. Here (Bay Area) and any other area with traffic, creating a 3 second gap between you and the car in front means that one or two cars will fill the spot. So you slow down to make the gap bigger, and another car or two will fill the spot. Keep it up long enough, and you'll be going 15 mph slower than everybody else and being a HUGE hazard. It will also encourage the guy behind you to try and drive over you.

Around here, I ride reasonably close to the stripe in the road, and always have a way out. But no way can I make a 2 to 3 second gap if there's much traffic.

I always recommend to new riders that they get their bike north of the Bay Area, like Marin or Sonoma, and spend some time riding with minimal traffic before they venture onto the freeways around here.
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Old 10-24-2012, 11:00 PM   #470
PSYCHO II
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwoodward View Post
As for what MSF suggests when riding in a group, there's are reasons to cut your margins down if you INSIST on riding in a parade- personally, I tend to avoid groups as much as possible, which is quite a lot.
Yes the whole "group riding" argument can become very emotive no matter where you live. The logic behind different beliefs can be come very illogical. The less crash avoidance space (3 sec, 2 sec or 1 sec gap) you give yourself the higher the risk. The "it can't be done" arguments are very much akin to the "my bike can't do it", "had to lay it down", "Personal Protective Equipment", "lane splitting", "ABS brakes" and "Hi-Vis" arguments.

Ultimately all riders have to make a choice as to the level of risk both legally and illegally they are willing to accept. All arguments have both positive and negative points. When riding on a public road, motorcyclists require the ability to recognise when they are exposed to hazards, and take direct action, which will reduce the likelihood of crashing.

Whilst a number of actions can be reduced to a number of simple responses that can be applied to nearly all situations the rider must be aware that "observation and diligence" override "hard and fast rules". But to simply throw away "tried and proven techniques" with no valid reason is simply "dancing with the devil". Having said this we must always be aware that if "nothing new was ever tried" then there would be no improvement.

Not willing to accept the "satus quo" is our greatest human strength. Not willing to accept the "status quo" is our greatest human failing. For someone starting out to ride, for whatever reason, the basics taught are a good foundation to build upon. Get the foundation right and the "building blocks" for learning can progress in a continual improvement direction. If the foundation is weak then only a miracle and not a "systematic and disciplined approach" will see the desired outcome.

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Old 10-25-2012, 03:35 PM   #471
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dwoodward View Post
Let's just process that a bit.

Let's say, for argument's sake, a car is 20 feet long. At 60mph, you'd be 60/10 * 20 = 120 feet behind the car in front of you.

60mph = 88 feet / second (I'll leave the math for that one as an exercise for the reader). 3 seconds is 264 feet, more than double "one car length for every 10mph".

Then there's reality, where, if one is in traffic, one feels blessed to maintain a full second's worth of gap and watches not just the car in front, but at least two cars in front of that one.

As for what MSF suggests when riding in a group, there's are reasons to cut your margins down if you INSIST on riding in a parade- personally, I tend to avoid groups as much as possible, which is quite a lot.
The only people I'll ride in a group with are a few personal friends who all have 30 years or more of serious riding time.

I dislike group riding because it all but eliminates my freedom of choice and movement. If I have to do it, I'll ride sweep where nobody will be behind me.
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Old 10-25-2012, 09:30 PM   #472
PSYCHO II
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ttpete View Post
I dislike group riding because it all but eliminates my freedom of choice and movement.
When group riding dictates your "freedom of choice and movement" then it is something you accept. It is your choice. My choice seems to very like yours as I will fall back and dictate my own terms. I will position myself so as not to get involved in the anticts of the so called "faster riders". Many riders feel that if they are not up the front their riding credentials are being questioned. If a ride leader insists on people "keeping up" then in my book it is their credentials that are in question.

Too many riders feel under pressure to prove themselves on the public road to other riders. The maturity of a rider is demonstrated in their ability to not yield to this temptation.

Instructors attempt to convey this to learners but how many instructors control their own behaviour when on the public road. I know many instructors who preach one thing but display another when riding "out of training class". Please don't get me wrong for I have suffered these temptations myself. If I was to sit here and tell you all that I have never yielded to temptation then I would expect my pants to catch on fire.

Mostly I am in "self control" .... the temptation is always there... I truly wish I could say that I never yield to temptation.... I really truly wish.
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Old 05-08-2013, 03:20 PM   #473
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Back from the dead!

I always love to be that guy who brings a dead thread back to life. There are good instructors and bad instructors. There are instructors with the patience to teach new riders and there are those with less patience who would be better suited to teaching ERC/IRC courses only.

I've been teaching since 2010 and I'm sure I've made plenty of students despise me. Some people really don't like to be told that they are a danger to themselves and others. When you follow that up with "I'm really sorry, but I have to ask you to leave." they tend to dislike you even more.

As far as some of the comments about the curriculum, I agree with it being inflexible. I've made recommendations about changing certain exercises, I've recommended adding additional information about PPE (in particular hearing protection during highway riding), and I've made recommendations about how the course is run. None of it has ever happened at my regional center.

However, you should know that as instructors, we're happy to answer whatever questions you have. Also, even though we cannot alter the curriculum, sometimes we can give advanced students additional criteria for the exercise or additional instruction to develop more advanced skills.

In order for states to accept an MSF card and add an M classification to a license, they have to know what the curriculum of the course is, and it has to be followed strictly. We also have to read DIRECTLY from the cards during testing to ensure that statewide every person who takes the course gets equal direction. We are not required to read verbatim from the cards during the 17 exercises though and are always willing to elaborate to make instruction more clear.

Truly sorry to hear the OP had a bad experience. You might consider taking the course over again. There is a big difference between being able to ride a motorcycle, and having the knowledge and skills to operate a motorcycle safely. I've taught students who have been riding twice as long as I've been alive and most of them will admit they learned something during the course.
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Old 05-08-2013, 05:42 PM   #474
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Isn't this the thread that started the most recent "How many fingers do you use to brake" goat rope back to life?
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Old 05-08-2013, 06:32 PM   #475
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Metzroth View Post

I've been teaching since 2010 and I'm sure I've made plenty of students despise me. Some people really don't like to be told that they are a danger to themselves and others. When you follow that up with "I'm really sorry, but I have to ask you to leave." they tend to dislike you even more.
Woof. How many folks have you counseled out in three years? I've been doing this for ten years and I've counseled out, maybe, 6? And every one effectively said, "thank you."
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Old 05-08-2013, 06:37 PM   #476
AzItLies
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Wow! very old thread, I'd hope mrs6gun has moved beyond this has met with the success she deserves.

I'm an msf RC also and have seen exactly what she is talking about. There are many RC's that really don't have the patience the job requires. That isn't to say I've never lost my patience, but it's a lot less often than others I've witnessed.

Teaching someone to ride a motorcycle, in such a short period of time, is not easy. There are some that should take the "Intro to Motorcycling" class first. But we really have no way of enforcing that? Most people just sign up for the "I want to get my license" class. Hey it does say it's for beginners! but if you read the fine print, it will say that "most" people succeed, not all people. That's the caveat.

No doubt though, the coach(es) can make a diff. A big one. Some are more competent than others, some communicate better, some have no patience, some are just miserable people no matters what you do...

They all try to be good coaches... but that's a relative term isn't it...

Cheers
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Old 05-08-2013, 08:10 PM   #477
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I remember taking a course when I lived in England, the problem was I had never ridden a bike or even a car until that day.
I had no idea you were meant to let of the throttle to change gear.
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Old 05-08-2013, 10:25 PM   #478
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I'm with Azitlies. I have been a MSF Rider Coach for over 20 years, and taught well in excess of 3,000 riders. Probably 1/3 of those had NO prior experience. It takes a LOT of patience and persistence, some gentle prodding, more patience, some congrats for basic techniques gained, more patience, and the occassional "you should stick to walking."

But I treat all my students with respect, and I try to pace the class slightly faster than the slowest learning rider. I always tell the other students to bear with us because we are starting from scratch. Even in a BRC, quite often about 3/4 of the students for any given class had some seat time. Unless I see no comprehension or progress taking place, then we have "the talk" to direct the student out. But the 1st hour of class, I make it clear, just because you paid does not mean you'll pass, or maybe even finish. It is ALL up to you with all the help I can give you. YOU have to prove to ME you can do it, but moreso understand WHY you can do it.
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