Concerns with Influencing Your Kids towards Street Bikes?

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by mikem9, Oct 15, 2013.

  1. Jedl

    Jedl Been here awhile

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    The best, no the only thing we can do for our children to keep them safe - is to educate them as best we can. Kids are not stupid, but they are often ignorant of the risks involved and unable to consider the consequences of risky behavior. Many of us survived learning to ride the street on our own without dirt experience and without any real training. It's the school of hard knocks to be sure, the test often happening before the lesson.

    My youngest son (25) doesn't know how to ride a motorcycle. I may pick-up a small dual-sport to teach him so that he is prepare when and if his son asks to try riding. I'm ready to buy a Z50 for the grandson but he's only 2 months old so I may wait just a little bit more. ;-)

    cheers,

    Jed
    #61
  2. mikem9

    mikem9 Wanderer

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    OP here. i have 4 kids that range in age from early teens to early 20's. Outdoor adventure and motorcycles are part of our family culture. I've been blessed in that the kids enjoy doing things with family. One of my biggest enjoyments is doing adventure with them and the on going discussions about various types of adventure.

    They all ride dirt bikes. And, two of them have their own dirt oriented dual sport bikes, which they have full responsibility for and maintain themselves. We've had some great adventures together and they seem to show good judgment. So, they've already been exposed to riding street, but that street is up in the mountains and typically linking trails kind of thing. The oldest has actually been on a couple of street adventures with me along the Blue Ridge Parkway. We borrowed a street bike for him from a friend. The first time, we trailered up to the parkway, so he could avoid riding through crowded areas. He did love it and talks about getting his own streetbike one day. But, young work life and other types of adventures seem to keep him busy, so he hasn't really pursued the street bike.

    I'm OK and have accepted the street risks of dirt oriented dual sporting and the influences of a family culture in that direction. It's the full on street side that gives me an uneasy feeling in the bottom of my stomach at times. If I give up the street bike, that space will be filled with something. IE - more dual sporting, or we've even been discussing getting a cheap project sports car to have some fun with. My teen son likes to rebuild various vehicles. We have a vintage stand up jet ski that the two boys bought to restore as another example. Something fun will take it's place.

    Yes, I know that they will make their own decisions. But, I also know that the family culture that we as parents create, also significantly influences the things they spend their time on and will possibly influence their decisions for a lifetime.

    Just trying to gather input, hear others' point of view, make a decision and move on. Thanks for further thoughts.



    Dual Sporting in Colorado with my sons:

    [​IMG]
    #62
  3. devo2002

    devo2002 -Devo

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    What decisions are you referring to? Deciding to white-line or zip through traffic at 100mph? Drive drunk? Or just decide what they want to be when they grow up or how to break up with a girlfriend in person instead of a text? I argue there are plenty of rational, responsible teenagers out there, are you seriously arguing there aren't? You don't need to be an adult to be aware of your actions having serious consequences, I really don't think it takes car insurance or brain surgeons to see this.

    I'm yet to see a study showing teenagers are incapable of riding a motorcycle safely. Plenty have lived, it isn't all luck.
    #63
  4. spibbie

    spibbie sportster barbarian

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    I had not ridden since my early 20's (before I got married) After my youngest finished high school, I thought I could get a bike and ride again, which I did.

    My middle son decided he wanted to have a MC as well. I told him I would not buy him a MC, cause they are very dangerous. He told me I was a hypocrit, I said yea, but MC really is dangerous, and since I have one I would know.

    I then pointed out he was over 21 years old, and that he was pretty much financially independent. He took the hint and bought his bike with his own money. What could I say? Ride safe son. I gave him some gloves and a helmet and some other stuff like that.
    #64
  5. Earth Rider

    Earth Rider Long timer

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    Yeah, statistically they're more likely to do all of those risky things than adults, and also speed and not wear seatbelts because studies show that they're satisfying the reward center of their brain while the underdeveloped prefrontal cortex is not able to register the risk as well until it fully develops in the early 20s, like I've been trying to tell you.
    #65
  6. SilkMoneyLove

    SilkMoneyLove Long timer

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    The Kids are Alright

    I see this as another opportunity for you with your kids. Share with them what you know and maybe take a Track School with them or something. Work on those street skills together.

    My daughter is almost 8 and I take her around in the neighborhood. I just bought a belt with handles so she has a good place to hang on. I want her to have fun, not be scared. If she ever shows an interest in riding, I will help her learn and try to make things as safe as possible through education, practice and safety equipment.

    I think it is also important to teach that safety equipment is no replacement for doing things correctly. It is a last resort.

    I think would do the same with any sport (soccer, football, dirt riding, bicycles...)

    Plus, talking with your kids they sometime surprise you with what they have decided they want to do. Maybe they want to get a classic car or the Porsche thing trips their trigger. You never know until you ask. It might just be that they would rather do a big hunting trip to Montana or Canada instead of more street riding.
    #66
  7. Pantah

    Pantah PJ Fan from Boston

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    My two sons rode briefly on the street. Like a few weeks but then started doing track days, which morphed into this:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Neither on of them rode much on the street during those years. They both still ride quite a bit of dirt, though. I am hoping they will join me for some dual sporting through southern Utah and Northern Arizona. I probably had them ride with me a handful of times. :cry But I am optimistic.
    #67
  8. devo2002

    devo2002 -Devo

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    This started when you pounced on my by saying

    "So we're excluding all young adults. I mean, there have been studies on this stuff. Young adults have less than half a brain that is all ego, and extremely stupid decision making skills."

    Now you are saying statistically they are MORE LIKELY to be at risk, this contradicts they have "extremely stupid decision making skills" as a whole.

    Which is it, jeesh man...
    #68
  9. outlaws justice

    outlaws justice Long timer

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    I have been there. Currently have two granddaughters who live with me, age 7 and 10 and they have been riding dirt bikes, ATV,s and Snowmobiles since the oldest was 3 years old. My Yougest daughter is now 26 (Stepdaughter) and she started riding when she was 10 and got her first dirt bike that year. She still riders Dirt, took the MSF class, rode a VF500 on the street, then two years later moved to the SV650S. She also has taken the Total Control Class. The bike stays at my house, she rides when she wants and likes to ride with me. Yes, I worry, but Like others have said when the time comes it comes maybe in a car, maybe on a bike. She enjoys riding, and enjoys riding with me as well (Unlike her older sisters and brother) Do I worry, YES, but I would worry more if she was on the back of a bike with someone who is not as knowledgeable or responsible, so I would rather she was operting her own bike rather than riding on the back with her boy friend. And she is careful, wears full gear and makes sure someone knows where she is going etc.
    #69
  10. outlaws justice

    outlaws justice Long timer

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    Great Idea, I actually gave my niece and my nephew MSF Classes, at no cost. they also both took the Dirt bike classes years before that as well. But at least they know some of the right stuff. (Basics)
    #70
  11. dwoodward

    dwoodward Long timer

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    We've raised two boys: One is 21 and a recently discharged Army combat engineer; one just turned 19. Both have ridden pillion with us since their early teens, were put through basic classes, and at least partly relied on a motorcycle for basic transportation since then. Neither has any meaningful off-road experience. Each has ridden to Laguna Seca, a 2000 mile round trip including lane splitting through Bay Area traffic, before they were 18. I think I can meet your 'BTDT' qualification.

    IMO, your attitude and actions will have a lot to do with how they ride (and drive). So, go set the example you want them to live by (possibly literally).

    No pressure. :deal

    (Note in my case, both of us teach motorcycle safety, so the boys were raised with TWO motorcycle safety nazis to answer to...)
    #71
  12. dwoodward

    dwoodward Long timer

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    A couple notes on needing to "learn to ride".

    It's not just about using the controls in an everyday manner.

    A "basic" riding class has to go over how to operate the bike, because beginners need to know that- and then should coach everyone to some standard of skill... which most of them will promptly lose through lack of use. This may be the factor behind dirt riders being less involved on the street- they know how to ride a bike aggressively if they need to.

    Note that, skills-wise, after a few months most self-taught street riders and most trained street riders are about the same; the first group learns as they go to a certain minimum level, the second learn to ride better than that in class, but don't practice so they lose it.

    But there's also supposed to be stuff on risk management which IMO is the really the important stuff. I don't tell my boys not to ride fast. I tell them not to ride fast where it's stupid to ride fast. It's a subtle but critical difference.
    #72
  13. Earth Rider

    Earth Rider Long timer

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    Holy shit. No, I am not contradicting myself. I'm saying almost EXACTLY the same thing only maybe using kinder language. They do have stupider decision making skills than adults as a whole, statistically speaking, making them more likely to be at risk.

    There is some hyperbole in there. Change it to excluding many young adults, not all, but many, and for the sake of this discussion it can sometimes be hard to tell which ones until they've driven into a bridge abutment or something.

    Sorry if you're a young adult and I offended you, I didn't mean it that way, but we've been arguing for pages about whether kids are more likely to do stupid stuff.
    #73
  14. joexr

    joexr Banned

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    I've been riding street for over 30 years and SPELLIN' even longer. How about you? ( the spelling I mean ):lol3
    #74
  15. devo2002

    devo2002 -Devo

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    I just turned 30, so I guess I'm old now right? No worries here, we are arguing the same thing. I don't plan on having kids so guess my opinion is moot anyway. Carry on and have a good day, glad we can not devolve like trolls.:freaky
    #75
  16. Wraith Rider

    Wraith Rider Banned

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    There's no reason not to encourage your loved ones to ride.

    Suprising how concerned you dirt guys are about the street.
    #76
  17. justafurnaceman

    justafurnaceman Imaginary

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    I just wanted to add that I have a little PW50 dirt bike with training wheels sitting in my garage that my almost 6 year old has only ridden a few times. She's nervous about the steering and the throttle control. As much as I would love her to have the same passion as I do I'm not going to push her to it if she doesn't want to.

    Like I already said, she loves to ride with me and I hope she continues to enjoy it. If she gets to the age or point that she wants to ride on the street then I'll make sure she gets appropriate gear and training to do so as safe as possible.
    #77
  18. joexr

    joexr Banned

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    I started my 3 sons on quads. 2 were a little sketchy at 3 and the middle one was better at 2 1/2 than the other two were at 4. She'll get used to it. My youngest who's almost 7 still rides with me. He used to cry when we would stop. He started with me at 1 1/2.
    #78
  19. Earth Rider

    Earth Rider Long timer

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    :freaky
    :freaky I love this site lately. yes, we are old.
    #79
  20. bogey78

    bogey78 Been here awhile

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    I've got two boys ages 9 and 4 and they both beg to ride on the back of the bandit. The 4 year old can't touch the pegs, so he only goes around the block in first gear. The 9 year old thinks he's the coolest kid in school when we roll up on the Bandit. I've taken him on some 50 mile rides close to home but I'm hyper vigilant and take it real easy with him on board. I dread the thoughts of them even driving cars/trucks when they get 16. But, I have this recurring dream of me and the boys taking dual sports on a TAT ride. I would have LOVED if my dad would have ridden when I was a kid. So for the boys, I think dirt bikes until driving age and then dual sports if they are still interested. Maybe a Ninja 250 or similar for a graduation present. After that, if they want a street bike, they pay for it and make their own choices.

    To be honest, I have had the thought that I'm leading them into a dangerous hobby. Of course, I've also been eyeing powered paragliders lately and would love to try it. In the end, I don't want to deny my kids something that I enjoy just because it is dangerous.
    #80