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My wife wants to start riding, even though I have been riding since I was 4. I would like some female riders ( or males ) to give some feedback on what helped them with getting on a full size sportbike without ever riding before? Any and all feedback would be very appriciated. I am thinking starting on a small dirtbike would be a good first step?
 

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i'd be nervous if my girl rode. i keep imagining how i'd feel if she called me one day while i was working and said that she's going to ride the mountains with some of the others. i'd be nervous all day!
 

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Personally, I love women that ride. When you want to go out for a cruise, they don't say "no, we are going to sit down and watch a romantic movie". A woman that has a bike just says "hell yeah..let's go". To me, you cant ask for more than that. I know some women that can RIDE (and drive, for that matter). I just find it cool. By the same token, I love girls that can play guitar or (especially) drums!
 

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Well, I am not a female, but I will tell you, start small. I started on a KLR 650, and because of the size, it was difficult and frusterating to learn at first. Start her on a 250 or 500. The 250 is cheaper in most respects and lighter. If you don't mind paying a lot more for the bike, gas, insurance, and maintenance, the 500 is a bit quicker. Probably easier to learn on he 250 though.
 

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I started on dirtbikes and 4 wheelers that had a clutch. The 4 wheeler gives you the idea on how to shift but you don't have to worry about the balance or not being able to touch the ground. Riding the dirt bike allows you to put it all togehter yet you don't have all the factors of being on the street, stop signs, turn signals, other idiots in cars/trucks not paying attention.

The other thing was I started on a 250 Ninja and before I had my plates to go on the street my boyfriend (now husband) had me riding it around the parking lot of the apartment complex that he lived in. We then went to a bigger parking lot just up the road and he tested me on my manuveribility.

Once I did go on the street he took me north away from town. I didn't ride in town for a week or two and once we did it was just little parts of town to get me used to the traffic and stopping/starting.

But be patient with her. It may come easier to her than you think and it might be harder for her. If she doesn't have the desire to learn, don't push her.

Oh and I believe if you ride them, you also learn about them - work on them. I change my own oil, spark plugs, tires, brakes, etc. The basic maintenance stuff but I try to learn all that I can, including setup for track days/racing and whatever else comes my way.
 

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I tell you the truth, my wife came at me with the same thing last year. She bought me my 636 for my birthday in July, we doubled alot and she started wanting her own bike. At first I was real nervous about it, but realized she deserved to learn and have her own. So, she goes and buys herself a new 250. I rode it to our dmv parking lot and she followed me in the car. I taught her everything about how to ride (controls, brakes, clutch, etc.) She caught on quick, then started doing circles in 1st, getting up to speed gradually and shifting too. She was ready for the street in literally 4 or 5 hours of practice. She took the MSF and got her license now rides everywhere.
Your girl would be fine, just teach her everything, take it real slow, and have paitence. After she's ready, make her take the class and get some gear and you'll enjoy her riding along with her! Good luck with it!
 

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OOPS, she was still logged in under her name. See what I mean, it started with the bike, now she's on the forum! I'm glad, it gives us something else to do and talk about.
 

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i would reccommend the msf course. it will be A LOT easier for her to learn the fundamentals (basic control, friciton point, etc) from a teacher than it will be for her to learn from you. trust me on this one. i'm a woman, i teach women, i know women. once she has a little confidence, you can start coaching her.

put her through the beginner rider msf course, get her a license and then get her a 250 or 500. i'm not saying that because i love small bikes (which i do) but even if she moves up in a year to a full blown sportbike, the small bike will help her confidence for the first little bit. plus, when she dumps it, it won't be a huge financial loss. it will also look good on her insurance.

there's no need to worry about your wife or girlfriend if she's riding. if you are her main riding partner, encourage her to ride within her limits and be sensible. if you set a bad example for her, maybe you do need to worry, but us girls are pretty good about not acting like arseholes when we're out riding.

you're in warren, eh? send your wife over to motogirlz.org and have her sign up. she should tell the mod that marshmallow sent her & then she should start asking the girlz about their experiences. we have a few members in michigan and lots in cleveland, so the to of you could come out and ride with us. one thing that most women need is to learn from other women. personally, i rode only with men for a long time and i don't have that hang up, but like i said, i teach women and it really helps to have the *inside* perspective.

good luck. tell her to be safe and keep in touch!
 

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put her on a dirtbike and let her learn that. i've taught many. even a 35 yr old girl that hadn't been on a bicycle since she was a kid. if they have the will, thats all it takes.
 

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My wife started riding 2 years ago, she took the mss class and started riding a zx7 after she finished the class she had never ridden anything b4 the class, it helped a lot. As soon as she started riding in the street I would always take the lead so hat she could see how I take the curves and other situations. She now has the confidence to ride 45 miles to work alone, it definitely gives us another thing to do together (married 7 years). You'll enjoy it.
 

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i say get her, her own bike. she loves you enough to get you your bike that you wanted, so why should you not do the same for her if she wants to ride. plus you know how much you like riding, well now she can love that to. i say do it.
 

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i'd also recommend the safety course, but hell start on a 600. every girl i ride with has generally started small like a 250 and gone 600 within a month or 2 and wished they had got a 600 to begin with and saved the money.
 

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i think you should send her through the course then get her a six . i bought a 250 first and a week after i learned to ride i took my ex husbands 929 that was it could never ride the 250 again it was a waist when i sold the 250 it wasn't even broke in. as soon as she learns she'll try yours then you'll be without a bike
 

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...if you set a bad example for her...


I was thinking more about this post today. And realized that I mimic my husband when I first started riding even now sometimes. Some of my riding "habits" came natural (if that is possible) but as far as taking corners, down shifting - most definitely I watched him.

One thing you definitely need to drill in her mind is to ride defensively. Anticipate everything even if it nothing happens one always has to be on guard.

I still vote for a 250 or even a 500, but I don't think I would recommend a 600, especially if she can't touch the ground. I had my 250 for a year and a half before I started riding my husbands ZX9, then a month later I had my 600. I can barely touch on it and if I would have started on it first I don't think I would have the confidence I have now.
The other thing with a smaller bike is the resell value, it doesn't seem to change very much. Maybe once she starts riding on the street she will find she doesn't enjoy it as much as she thought.
 

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Originally posted by Kerrman1
i'd also recommend the safety course, but hell start on a 600. every girl i ride with has generally started small like a 250 and gone 600 within a month or 2 and wished they had got a 600 to begin with and saved the money.
Now now, I am sure there are plenty of women out there who aren't just point and shoot and would like to learn leaning as well. Either way, if you lose money on a 250, you did something wrong. I know plenty of men and women who started on 250s, got a 600, then went back to the 250 because it was cheaper/more comfortable/easier to manage/just as fun in every respect save for acceleration.

There is no way anyone learns enough in 6 months, let alone 1 or 2, to make use of every last drop of performance a 250 has to offer. Most people move up for peer pressure reasons. I always laugh when I read things like, "After 2 months I was ready for a 600". Those must be the people on 600s holding me up in the twisties.
 

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Originally posted by racedoll


The other thing with a smaller bike is the resell value, it doesn't seem to change very much. Maybe once she starts riding on the street she will find she doesn't enjoy it as much as she thought.
That's an excellent point. Buy and take care of a used 250, and you will be able to sell it for about what you payed. But a 600 and if she doesn't like it or wrecks it, and you will be watching your money go down the drain.

If she gets bored on a 250, she hasn't learned to ride it right.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks everyone for the info especially the ladies. I think the way to start is to get her enrolled in a saftey course.
 

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def the msf class, and get her some books on riding as well.

I'd reccommend the 250, but see what she feels comfortable with after the course
 

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I started on a 250. Rode it for about a year.. The bigger bike intimidated me at first. MSF course and dirt bike skills would be a plus. I now ride a YZF600R and my husbands Aprilia mille. The 250 is now the kids bike to learn on.
 
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