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Tips & Hints

 

Riding two up is considerably different to riding solo. It takes longer to stop and more thought must go into every situation. If you only have a few thousand kilometres of riding skills, one must be extra cautious with the added life depending on your skills. You have enough experience to be allowed to carry a passenger, so you know what it feels like when accelerating, braking, and cornering, but does your pillion?

The fact is: Pillion riding is not for the easily distracted. It is not like being a passenger in a car. You need to be as aware as the rider. You need to be aware of your surroundings, you need to be able to move with the motorcycle, you need to lean in with the corners and tuck down on some straights.

You need to become one with the motorcycle, and be a pillion rider not a pillion passenger.

STARTING OUT

  • Take it slow – Find some less travelled roads to reduce the possibility of unknown situations.
  • Don’t expect your pillion to know how to get on and off the bike. Explain that they should wait until the bike is off the stand and you are ready for the shift in balance. Especially important if the rider is a little on the shorter side.
  • Keep the outings really interesting to keep your your pillions interest up until they love the ride purely for the ride.
  • Out of the way restaurants, cafes and places with spectacular views as a destination for breakfast or lunch or an afternoon treat, means for your pillion it is not just about the ride, but about the destination that those roads take the pair of you to.                        
  • Do pay attention to their needs. Unlike riding solo, its not all about your comfort or confidence level. So don’t ignore the change in pitch of a scream as it goes from pleasure to terror.
  • Don’t tell your pillion about helmet hair until after the thrill of their first ride. Then you can thoughtfully suggest they plait long hair next time & invest in a lightweight open face balaclava. Benefit; they not only keep you warmer in winter, they stop headphones being pulled out of your ears when pulling your helmet on or off and they help keep the inside of your helmet clean. Its easier to wash the balaclava then pull your helmet apart to wash and don’t get me started on trying to get it dry! So they make a great addition for any rider as well as your pillion.
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Bluetooth headsets

On the Road

Once you are on the road, there are some basic techniques that will make for a much smoother, more comfortable and more confident ride for both pillion and rider. Remember a jab in the kidneys does not mean ‘go faster’. It normally means slow down, I’m not comfortable or I need you to pull over …

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