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Safe Cornering Techniques: A Beginner’s Guide


(Image Source: Flickr)

If you are a new rider, you may not think that riding around corners is particularly difficult. However, it is very easy for even seasoned bikers to misjudge their speed, entering a corner too fast. When you throw in the fact that as a novice rider, you will still be learning how to practice good techniques, you can see that corners can pose a challenge. Don’t worry – thankfully, safe cornering is something you can learn with a little bit of studying and practice out on the road. Below is a guide which will help you to learn about safe cornering techniques.

Positioning

Safe cornering begins with proper positioning. When you are out on the road, you should begin preparing to turn a corner well before you reach it. If you are tackling a right-hand corner, you should move out to the left of the lane. If you are taking on a left-hand corner, you should move right. Doing so will help to improve your view around the corner as you enter it.

Speed

Before you enter a corner, it is likely that you will need to slow down. You should apply some braking well before you enter the corner when you are still travelling in a straight line. If you attempt to brake while turning a corner on your motorcycle, you will upset the balance of your machine, which could result in you losing control. When slowing down for a corner, you should avoid any harsh applications of the brakes. Instead, you should touch your brakes and change down a gear or two to slow your machine.

Turn-in

As you reach the corner, you will want to lean into the curve slightly so that the bike follows you. As you start to turn in around the corner, you should keep your eyes looking forward, focusing on the exit point. You should not focus on the corner itself, as this can cause you to over- or under-steer.

Adjusting Position

The aim when cornering is to maintain the grip of the tyres on the road surface, and the balance of your machine. You will be able to feel it if your machine becomes unbalanced, or if the tyres are slipping. If this occurs, do not panic. Simply adjust your position to remedy the problem. For example, if you are starting to run a little wide, you should reduce the amount of throttle, and this will tighten your line. If you are turning too far into the corner, you should reduce the lean of your bike, so you track back to the correct trajectory.

Exiting

Before you know it, you will have reached the exit of the corner. As you reach the exit, you should lean away from the turn so that your bike is level again. As you do this, gently open the throttle so that the machine can accelerate out of the corner and pick up some speed. With practice, it is easy to master taking corners on your motorcycle.