Concerns with Influencing Your Kids towards Street Bikes?

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

  1. DAKEZ

    DAKEZ Long timer

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    +1

    IMO Riding adds to ones quality of life. Get them each something that handles well and is polite and user friendly while still being engaging like a Triumph Street Triple (or similar) and let them LIVE! :ricky

    A life well spent comes when one adds life to their days... Not days to their life.
    #81
  2. James Adams

    James Adams non impediti ratione cogitationis

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    Ride! The only times that I've ever hurt myself and/or done any appreciable damage to my bike have been off-road. :dunno
    #82
  3. FlyingWWW

    FlyingWWW Adventurer

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    Both my boys grew up riding dirt. They both started riding street at 15, with me. Yes it scares me. But at some point they are going to do it anyway. They are 16 & 17 now and very good riders.
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  4. mikem9

    mikem9 Wanderer

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    Interesting and from my perspective, it's often true. Maybe has something to do with the fact that in the dirt you are regularly taste the pain of bad decisions. Maybe that's part of the reason that dirt riders are "significantly underrepresented in the crash data" (Hurt study as someone pointed out) They are like Pavlov's Dog, constantly watching for being "shocked". :D
    #84
  5. mrchips0401

    mrchips0401 n00b

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    Not an expert, but I'll give my two cents worth. I have a ton more experience on dirt than on the street (started in the dirt as a young guy) - I personally think teaching/experiencing the dirt first for at least a few years - then they can consider the street. I always tell my kid, I use the street basically to get me to the good dirt riding. But safety lessons all the time should work.
    #85
  6. justafurnaceman

    justafurnaceman Imaginary

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    We still see the Accident reports that are posted on the Army Safety site of Soldiers dying while riding in the dirt. Had one die last month.
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  7. Pantah

    Pantah PJ Fan from Boston

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    There is reason to be concerned. Street riding is about avoiding being hit or hitting things. Dirt riding is about navigating terrain and staying upright while doing it. We all remember when we turned 16 and got our drivers licenses. We did foolish things. He had fender benders. A fender bender on a motorcycle can kill you.
    #87
  8. corndog67

    corndog67 Banned

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    I grew up riding and racing dirt bikes and then street bikes when I was 15. My step kid , 22 years old and lives in downtown San Francisco, wants to learn to ride a street bike and wants to learn in San Francisco. As it is, he barely rides a bicycle. To throw him out into the traffic of SF , to me, would be suicide and completely irresponsible if I had anything to do with it, so I won't have anything to do with it, and my wife agrees. If he wants to come down here to learn , I'll help him.
    #88
  9. Wraith Rider

    Wraith Rider Banned

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    There's reason to be concerned about going out of the door at all. But street riding is not that scarry. Only the needed skills differ slightly from the dirt riding skills. Navigating traffic instead of terrain for example.
    #89
  10. Katoom72

    Katoom72 Been here awhile

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    I dont get it...jumping triples is safer then ride around town?
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  11. Earth Rider

    Earth Rider Long timer

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    I didn't know you needed to jump triples to ride dirt.
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  12. joexr

    joexr Banned

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    You don't , but you should try it.:lol3
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  13. mtnbikeboy

    mtnbikeboy Been here awhile

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    I did not grow up riding and have been riding street for 3 years (I am 34). I have ridden mountain bikes since high school without injury (only rec riding).

    I went through 3 cars in HS. Only 1 accident was multivehicle. Had I had a motorcycle then, I probably would have seriously injured myself. My parents didn't push me one way or the other.

    When I have kids of my own, I want to take them riding with me, and have dirt bikes if they're interested.

    To those who wonder at why street seems to be a bigger deal, here is my .02.
    While riding off road and specifically recreational trail riding, almost all injuries will be a result of your own poor decisions or skill. On the street, no matter how good of a rider you are, there's always the chance of someone else's poor decision giving you a bad day. I feel everyone's been talking around this point without stating it directly. If the kids have been racing, then they also know to watch for others' mistakes and may have greater situational awareness.
    #93
  14. Wraith Rider

    Wraith Rider Banned

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    @mtnbikeboy
    When I was younger, I had two relevant motorcycle crashes (and countless harmless on streets and field paths) and two car crashes.

    One car crash was completely my fault (single vehicle) because I didn't gave attention to what I was doing, one car crash (single vehicle again) I wasn't able to handle the car on winterly streets and if it was a bit less fortunate timing it would have been a frontal crash with another car that very likely could have killed at least me (no seat belt).
    One bike crash was on snow covered streets, the other was because I was too young and tried to overtake where I shouldn't.

    So it wasn't someone else's poor decisions that bit me. And my worst injury was a twisted ankle - something that could as well have happened in the dirt.

    What I want to say: I wasn't hell of a good rider nor did I have much luck getting away with that lack of skill and still I not only survived but wasn't noteworthy hurt. Only difference if I had been dirt riding would have been that I would have gone down more often and most likely would have had more twisted ankles.
    #94
  15. Kommando

    Kommando Long timer

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    Trees, rocks, cliffs, etc. don't generally swerve into one's path, whether accidentally, distractedly, or purposely. Trees, dirt, sand, and many other offroad obstacles also have a bit more give to them than vehicles, curbs, buildings, walls, dividers, guard-rails, etc. The offroad obstacles also can't typically gang up and run you over if the first one didn't finish the job. The inertia involved in offroad crashes is probably considerably less, on average.

    Closing speed on dirt is generally simply how fast the rider is going, and most dirt riders that gear up wear considerably more/better impact-dispersing gear than most street riders wear when they "gear up". I get strange looks wearing chest or back protection on the street. I get strange looks from wearing armored pants for riding pavement, or even armored full-finger gloves. Even many dirt riders give in to the peer pressure when riding pavement, and don't gear up to the same extent that they do on dirt.

    Riding dirt well also develops the skills that help handle a bike when situations, including traction, go to crap. A skilled dirt rider doesn't have to as-consciously think about controlling the bike.

    This does not mean that a dirt rider should just start riding street without developing some street skills though. The dirt skills are PART of an excellent base to build from. On street, I think that STRATEGY plays more a part of safely navigating traffic if the bike-handling skills have already been developed in dirt. A dirt-skilled rider can focus more of their brain function and attention on strategy, rather than having to ALSO focus on controlling the bike when it's at the limit, or possibly even beyond. For similar reasons, track days/schools can be good too, but the skills developed there would probably not translate as well as dirt skills to everyday traffic situations, with the lower speeds and possibly-wide variations in traction encountered on public roads.
    #95
  16. xymotic

    xymotic Long timer

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    Yeah, it's a tough question if you're being honest about it. I'd say it depends on the kid. I'm 44 RE-started riging about 6 years ago.

    I think I have OK judgement most of the time, but man I'm a hooligan on a bike. There's NO WAY I would have survived in my teens or twenties.

    If you start them young and teach the diff between a track and street, then MAYBE. If you Forbid it, odds are about 100% they'll get one when they move out @ 21 or whatever so that's not a good plan either.

    I think you just gotta be honest and talk to them about it in depth.
    #96
  17. xymotic

    xymotic Long timer

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    I disagree with this. My last broken bone was because that tree jumped out in front of me for no good reason. I had to punch it with my fist just to teach it a lesson.
    #97
  18. Earth Rider

    Earth Rider Long timer

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    Anyone ever hit a deer while riding dirt? Just curious. I almost got mowed down by one on my mountain bike once.
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  19. Kommando

    Kommando Long timer

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    I've never even had a close call with a deer on pavement, and I lived a large part of my life in forest-rat-infested Illinois.

    Down here, I worry more about feral pigs, loose dogs, cottonmouths, turkey vultures, gators, and meth-heads. I only really see deer around here after the sun starts dropping. I got within about 50yds of a panther about a month ago, riding on a trail alongside a canal right as the sun was going down. I really wouldn't want to run into one of those on the trail. I wouldn't want to run into a bear or any of those other dangerous critters either.
    #99
  20. corndog67

    corndog67 Banned

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    In my opinion, nothing helps develop riding skills on the street, more than becoming a proficient dirt rider. The only street riders that seem to disagree with this, are the ones that have never ridden on dirt. One of the most important skills you develop in the dirt, is getting a feel for traction, learning what the tires are doing. If you can make it through se adobe snot mud that has no traction whatsoever of road, pretty much you can handle anything on the street. Whether its traction in turns, or starting and stopping on side slopes, or taking off and braking, it all translates over to the street.