Motorcycles and You
by Steve Dearborn
Learning how to ride a motorcycle is one of the coolest, most exciting skills you can learn. But it's also one of the most dangerous. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, motorcyclists are 35 times more likely to be involved in an accident than people in a car. This shouldn't deter you from learning to ride, but it should serve as a reminder that although the joys of motorcycle riding are many, there are serious consequences if the pleasure of riding isn't taken seriously.
What's Up, Cool Breeze?
The draw of a motorcycle can present itself in many different ways. Maybe it's that cool guy who sits behind you in class who always has his helmet under his arm and a slick black leather jacket. Or maybe it's the call of the open road, nothing but you and your machine in harmony.
There is a lot to consider when looking at getting into perhaps the hippest hobby in the world, and the most important thing- the thing that will save your skin should you get into an accident and put your bike down- is the motorcycle riding gear. Any rider worth his salt will tell you AGATT—all gear, all the time. This means covered from head to toe: helmet, jacket, gloves, pants and boots. All the time. It doesn't matter if you think you look cooler without the leather pants, or if the helmet messes up your hair. You'll look pretty lame splattered across the sidewalk.
You should always wear all your gear, but if you've decided against the pants and the jacket, it is essential to always wear a helmet. Cheap motorcycle helmets will save your brain, your face and your life. A helmet does more than just protect your brain and face in a crash. It can make riding more enjoyable by cutting down on the roaring wind blowing in your ears and face, and can also prevent any nasty bug-on-face collisions. Wearing a helmet also projects the image that you're serious about riding. Ever drive down the highway and see the guy on his Harley, flip flops, t-shirt and no helmet? What does that say about how seriously he takes riding his motorcycle? Don't be that guy, wear your helmet.
Protect Your Noggin
Motorcycle helmets have been developed specifically for riding, and only continue to change for the better since fatalities have seen a rise. They're made up of four basic parts—the outer shell, the impact absorbing liner, the padding layer and the chin strap. The outer shell and impact layer work together to absorb and spread the force of impact so as little as possible reaches your head.
A full-face helmet offers the most protection to both your head and your eyes. Most full-face motorcycle helmets come with an eye guard to protect from wind, sun and bugs. Motorcycle helmets come in almost any design imaginable, and many bike manufacturers are making them to coordinate with their newest models. When looking for a motorcycle helmet, make sure the one you buy has a DOT or Snell sticker, to show that it has passed all the required safety tests.
If you're not quite ready yet to throw caution to the wind, perhaps you'd rather come walk on the wild side and take a ride in a 2005 Honda NSX. According to Car Gurus, who gave this amazing car five stars, it's zooming fast, but has rated exceptionally well in terms of safety too. So if you crave speed and prefer having the comfort of a car that will deliver performance-wise as well, look no further.
About the Author:
Thomas Stewart believes in keeping up with technology, especially in the digital information age. You can't be a reporter without having the latest technology and using the most current social networks.