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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have read the tips given here, and what struck me is that the "lean" people talk about seems close to the lean you use when you ride a mountain bike. I didn't realize was leaning until I rode my bike today. It seems very close to what you guys are talking about. Am I right?

The brakes on the mountain bike seem similar to the way the motorbike behaves.
 

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Many of the dynamics of a motorcycle are similar to those of a mountain bike. Steering works the same, weight transfer under braking is similar. You'll probably already know that you can trust the front brake, and that it does most of the effective braking. You may have even experienced how an endo feels. Just don't try locking up the rear to get around tight corners downhill-racing style on a sportbike. :p Balancing at low speed is similar. Of course, the weight of a motorcycle is much greater, so you can't just muscle the thing into turning where you want it to go - you need to actively countersteer at any speed higher than jogging pace.

I found that being an experienced mountain biker gave me a good advantage over other new riders when I was doing my courses. I was about as good as the instructor (former racer) at ultra-low-speed balancing. When other people were dumping their bikes at the slightest hint of wheel lockup on the closed course, I was getting away with locking it up in a curve (by accident, of course). The reactions required are the same for a motorcycle or bicycle. At higher speeds, though, I found that some of the reflexes I built up on the mountain bike don't work on a motorcycle. For example, if I notice a pothole in the road right in front of me at the last second, I tend to try to lean the bike only with my body in order to turn around it. This works well on a 30 lbs bike. Not so much on a 450 lbs one. Be sure you practice countersteering and sudden swerving, because I find that even once I knew how to turn quite well, in emergency situations I tend to revert back to the old lean-to-turn mode.
 

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Sure, a lot of the skills used in bicycling are used in motorcycling. That's one of the reasons that riding a motorcycle is so intuitive. You can do a lot more on a motorcycle (mostly because the suspensions are so much better and the tires grip more) so it's important to take a class and/or practice a lot. But in its most basic form, the balance and the motions from riding a bicycle at speed are the same.
 

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One difference I notice if I get on my mountain bike shortly after riding the m/c is that the bicycle has a much shorter wheelbase and I tend to wobble back and forth for a few seconds. Once used to the bicycle again, I start consciously counter-steering while riding it. It's good practice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I am too very good on mountain bikes so this may be good when I go for my course is 4 weeks.
 
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