MSF Instructor was an MF'er

Discussion in 'The Perfect Line and Other Riding Myths' started by Mrs6gun, Sep 22, 2012.

  1. dolomoto

    dolomoto Destroyer of Motorcycles

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    Ah, nicely played.

    The OP has said she is satisfied, and moving on.

    If folks would like to debate the dangers of taking an MSF course....I'm up for it...on another thread.

    Good on the OP for realizing that the MSF training is "one size fits all" but is not best for all.

    Fair weather and smooth roads to all riders. Ride Often and minimize your Risks!
    #81
  2. tedder

    tedder irregular

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    Good. There's nothing to learn from negative comments or those you disagree with.
    #82
  3. Capt Crash

    Capt Crash Been here awhile

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    Dolomoto--a student leaving in an ambulance is not a success.
    #83
  4. dbuzz

    dbuzz Citizen of the world

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    Unfortunately if you always ignore negative criticisms you may not ever learn what is needed to be learnt.

    I am very puzzled that you say the instructor was a 'jerk' but have not detailed what exactly made this person a 'jerk'. That leaves the whole business open to some rather varied interpretations. Did the instructor shout at you? Did they say "you are stupid"? did they have to say numerous times "no... do it this way"?

    You need to define what exactly you mean by 'bad experience' otherwise it just sounds like sour grapes :puke1
    #84
  5. TrashCan

    TrashCan Scary Jerry

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    Well, this was a fun thread.




    :freaky:rilla:rilla:rilla:muutt:kboom:mulie:kat:baby:baldy:gdog:poser:y0!:cry:norton


    did I leave anything out???:dunno
    #85
  6. OaklandStrom

    OaklandStrom Long timer

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    It sounded a lot like my MSF class. I had been riding for a long time, but had a deadline at the DMV, and it was easier to get into the class than into an appointment time at the DMV. I figured I'd learn something, and get an insurance discount too.

    We got into groups, watched videos and answered questions by looking in the book. The classroom session wasn't enlightening. If you are prone to drinking and driving, it might have convinced you to not ride and drive. He did his best to send people towards small bikes without actually saying it, but was obviously held back by something (HD supporting the program?). WTF?

    The parking lot session was OK. I really didn't learn much about riding, but he helped point out a bad habit I had formed (not looking far enough through the corners...).

    There was a guy. Holy shit.
    This guy will probably have a terrible accident if he ever tries to ride a bike. He simply couldn't figure out the clutch. He'd stall it at idle, or rev the hell out of the bike and not release the clutch. An instructor worked with him as much as he could, without ignoring everybody else. I sincerely hope he didn't pass.

    You may not be reading any more, but I don't think your class was out of line. If you didn't get it in the allotted time, spend some time practicing the friction zone thing and try again. It's possible that riding isn't for you.

    Hopefully it is.
    #86
  7. Hurricane Bob

    Hurricane Bob formerly: Bomber1965

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    I predict another 10 pages....it's pretty dead around here on the weekends.:freaky
    #87
  8. dbuzz

    dbuzz Citizen of the world

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  9. atomicalex

    atomicalex silly aluminum boxes

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    I think the OP should consider a private instructor. I went that route (in Germany, you have to), and my heavens, it was one of the best two-month stretches of time in my life. It was expensive, and it was time consuming, but it really paid off.

    There are a lot of buttheads out there. I work in industry, and there are still guys who get pissed when a chick comes out ont he shop floor to solve a problem that they couldn't. You just have to look past them and focus on your goal. They are speedbumps for sure, but if you hit them hard enough, you can get some nice air.
    #89
  10. usgser

    usgser Long timer

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    If you have an issue complain to the MSF mothership but be ready to answer some uncomfy questions. I'm not a msf corp member or any way related to the org but most instructors aren't there to be your friend, they're there to keep you alive. If you're there just for the drill to get papered or if you're there to learn makes a difference. Heck my ex ole lady even passed the class and day 1 to 1.5 was all about getting into her pants. So bad vibes on both ends. It took till 1/2 way through day two she finally told him if he doesn't lighten up and back off and she can't kick his arse she'll gut an fillet him before he hits the ground. She rode well and passed the course. Don't know all your specific instructor/student issues but contrary to US popular belief it's NOT always the teachers fault that lil Johnny flunked out. If you feel you really got jerked around bitch to the official people that can give you the warm-n-fuzzy you seek.
    #90
  11. PSYCHO II

    PSYCHO II Crusty Demon

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    So your 100% is 100% bullshit. What a troll. You give with one hand and wank with the other.:rofl

    100% success rate in sucking people in.:freaky

    But on a more serious note I believe that she would deserve a refund if the standard of the class was advertised as "novice" and the instructor decided that the others were being "held back" because of one person. Assuming that even though they were taking longer their progression was within the time frames allocated.

    If on the other hand she was in a course for "riders with certain experience" then the time frames and criteria would not be the same and she may have not been up to the entry standard required. A "sheep in wolves clothing" to turn a phrase about. Then of course it would be out the door. No trolls in this training course... goodnight Doreen.

    A trainer is someone who can take a person that can not do a task and transform that person into someone who can do the task. There is no guarantee of 100% success.

    A trainer is NOT someone who watches some other person perform a task and then believed that they have trained them if they only simply asked them to do it. That is truly the sign of a wanker. Training is about tuition and corrective action and then observing the result that meets a specified level of outcome. Just watching is just a voyeur and there are many voyeur videos out there. Be careful if you Google "voyeur videos" the content may not be about motorcycling.... but I think I mentioned wankers previously.:lol3
    #91
  12. ddavidv

    ddavidv Thrifty not cheap

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    Interesting discussion in-between the name calling. I think there are two sides to this story, and it's unfortunate we'll never know what the other side was thinking. This year I began instructing with this organization: http://www.putonthebrakes.com/ We teach high school teens skills that hopefully keep them from killing themselves in the first few years of driving. I really enjoy it, and it's taught me quite a bit about instructing people with wildly varying skill sets. I'll allow that teaching the parents would probably be vastly different. My favorite students are typically the girls (and no, not because I'm a perv). They are usually there because their folks made them come. They aren't there to show off like the boys. Most of them develop a sharp focus and determination to master the skill that is just amazing to watch. I've told a few of the quiet ones after the drills they are ready for car commercial stunts because they are that good. OTOH, I've had some boys that I cringe the thought of having to share the road with. Most listen but some don't. One poor soul, a minority with a single mom parent probably would not pass his DOT driving test without some serious one-on-one instruction, and I told his Mom he needed more training (the only parent I felt I had to do that with). Mom was teaching him, but she was so nervous she drove him bat-shit paranoid, hence his terrible driving. I can't fix that in a 20 minute accident avoidance session.

    Before I became a sports car road racer, I had to go through a lot of instruction. One of the things the chief instructor always said was that some people will be coded OSB: Other Sports Beckon. Meaning, not everyone is capable of passing. Tough pill to swallow for the participant, and a difficult discussion to have as an instructor.

    My MSF experience was a good one for the most part. About 4 people (definitely new Sportster owners) quit after the first classroom session because they thought it was 'stupid'. Good riddance. The rest of us went through the course and everyone passed. A couple struggled, and they got a little extra help. I did very well (lots of dirt experience in my youth) and didn't need much attention, though I did learn several things. One instructor was horribly vanilla; dull, didn't give much feedback and wasn't particularly good at explaining something that he couldn't read from the manual. Not a bad guy, just not a great instructor. The other guy was vastly better; a natural born teacher and knew how to encourage people even when they were doing poorly.

    The MSF course itself is VERY basic at it's beginning, and most people should have no trouble getting through it. If they can't handle the clutch or walking the bike, well...OSB. However, you don't bring someone to tears bitching and yelling about their ineptitude. A good instructor knows how to handle that. Each class and each instructor will be different. I wouldn't dismiss the entire MSF course based on one questionable instructor.
    #92
  13. sleazy rider

    sleazy rider Squidly Adventurer

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    And maybe, just maybe the OP was too dense to get the hint that she wasn't catching on and never would in the timeframe allotted. The RC had to use one syllable words to get his point across and she got butthurt over it. I took the course several years ago and watched a young lady catapult herself and the course bike across a grass median, two sections of parking lot and into a car before cartwheeling quite spectacularly. She was sent home, along with three others who didn't get it. The course is taught to keep those capable of mechanical interaction interested and weed out the inept. She got voted off the island.
    #93
  14. majlee_vmi

    majlee_vmi Tidewater 41009

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    You sound like you've spent some time in the military training to standard and not to time and given enough attention to the standard, almost anyone can pick up a new skill. Good on ya'. I just took my ERC (AGAIN...!) to meet US Army requirements. To be honest, I was dreading it since I just took the Total Control before coming back to Germany. Have to say, the instructor today was a breath of fresh air. Motorad Action Team has the MSF contract here in Germany, so I got a German trained expert who had the time and patience to help expand on the Total Control training AND let me practice a better skill set while still meeting the MSF guidelines. Truly refreshing. He did have to ask me to slow it down a tick on the turning exercises, but provided great feedback on cornering and body position. He could also relate the physics behind the maneuver in order to explain why the technique does what is does. That may be because he was a German AF fighter pilot though.

    Hate to hear the OP's experience with MSF - I'm not a fan of the curriculum, but it is a good method to learn or improve a teachable skill. Hope she gets back in the saddle sooner rather than later.
    #94
  15. tedder

    tedder irregular

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    Photo proof is required.
    #95
  16. Bill_Z

    Bill_Z Dude! chill,...

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    First, let me say that I have not read the entire thread, but that I was so upset by your comments that I have simply jumped in to reply:

    This is EXACTLY what happened to my wife when we attempted the class together, with my Father-In-Law. We were excited to have the opportunity to share the learning experience and found the group to be much too large (18+) with four or five instructors that we all rushing to keep a schedule and not worried about teaching the riders that were actually beginners. My wife bailed on the class within the first hour and I was ready to lay hands on someone because of the way they made my wife and best friend feel like an idiot.

    I found out, after the class, that the instructors were being evaluated on their presentation and ability to perform by their superiors, and as a result, completely lost sight of the objective of the class.

    Boy, I was hot. I finished the class, because of the cost invested, but my wife was unable to proceed. At this point, I am not surprised to hear of your experience. I will offer an apology to you and others who have had this experience. It's too bad that this program is suffering because the premise is good, but I believe that they have lost the purpose and spirit of teaching. My wife never received an apology from anyone that day, or afterwards. It still make me mad, so I can empathize with your comments and feelings.
    #96
  17. tedder

    tedder irregular

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    Wait. Were there 18+ motorcycles?
    #97
  18. Butters

    Butters Kwyjibo

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    Is that big? I don't recall exactly, but my class must have had at least a dozen, maybe more than 15. We did divide into two groups, but I think everybody was supplied their own bike. (This was a private class where you actually got your M endorsement if you passed).

    I'm not sure why this discussion got so polarized. Clearly, there's occasions where people need to be sent home. But there's no reason people shouldn't be treated with respect (unless they're disrespectful). I'm sure that happens 95%+ of the time. But just like life, some people are jerks or have bad days. Sometimes personalities just don't mix.

    I still feel comfortable recommending an MSF class. I imagine some of those that rightfully fail get something out of it - including the realization that motorcycling may not be meant for them. But they should have a meaningful chance at learning.
    #98
  19. slartidbartfast

    slartidbartfast Love those blue pipes

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    I'm very sorry to hear about this and other poor experiences with MSF. I can't relate to how the coaches might have been behaving as I have no personal experience with mass "bail-outs" from a class. I also am reading a number of reports in this thread of coaches belittling students, making them cry, etc. I am sure it happens but would bet that most cases are largely the result of factors other than the coach.

    While I have occasionally found a (female) student close to tears in frustration as they desperately strive to master new skills, I have only come across a handful who claimed that some instructor made them cry by shouting at them. I DO point out that "If you hear me raising my voice it is because you are on a running motorcycle and wearing a helmet. I am shouting TO you, not AT you." If someone still ends up tearful, patient inquiry has ALWAYS revealed a reason other than the coaching, such as "My husband will be SO mad at me if I fail this - he already bought me a bike and I'm scared of it because it's so heavy", etc. There are also people who show up for class tired, hungry, hung over, high, etc., or with some other self-inflicted burden.

    It seems as if you might have been a student in a Ridercoach training class, where new coaches are being put through their paces with real live students, delivering a real live BRC. In my experience, the students get excellent attention in such courses because of the additional coaches, and the watchful eye of the Ridercoach Trainers to keep everyone in line. A Ridercoach Trainer class is even more interesting because you have trainee Trainers, training trainee Coaches, training students, all being watched by the top level instructors. It doesn't seem to diminish the experience for most students, however.

    The maximum number of students allowed on a training range is 12 although I can understand how it might feel like more when there is a lot of action going on.


    This statement makes no sense as the coaches should have been MORE aware of the objective of the class and MORE attentive to the needs of every student. It's hard to say for certain, not having been there, but I strongly suspect there were other factors you were not tuned in to, that led to your wife bailing within an hour.
    #99
  20. dwoodward

    dwoodward Long timer

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    There is a lot that people assume about the relationship between MSF and the RC in a parking lot that generally isn't correct.

    MSF develops the curriculum and provides materials and training on how to use them (see below).

    RCs very rarely work for MSF- they work for themselves or the person that has the contract to run that site.

    The person running the site is repsonsible for ensuring that they follow the state's guidelines for training. Policy on dismissing students is a combination of the local state and the local site.

    The state typically has a small staff of people to ensure compliance and train new instructors. The training staff is trained by MSF.

    So, it's all pretty disjointed. How it works in Georgia is not how it works in WA; how it works at one site in Texas may not how it works five miles away.

    Oregon and Idaho are exceptioins, not only do they not use MSF materials, they have one program that covers the entire state, instructors work for the program. (I think there are a few other states like this as well.)

    So the person to complain to is probably the local site franchisee, and maybe the state coordinator's office- although a friend used to work for the state office, and when he said something to a site franchisee, they told him "yeah, OK, sure, uh-huh,, go away now"- because they knew nobody was going to replace them, so the state really had no power.