Safety Tip: Braking in a Curve

NoCo IMRG Ride - Lookout Mountain

As I was riding in and around the Steamboat Springs area this past weekend, I was enjoying the many twisties my route presented me. I love the long sweeping corners with consistent radius’ but occasionally you are going to have those decreasing radius corners that you are unable to see the other side. I was contemplating my “what if” scenarios as I negotiated the corners. What if I was met with large rocks across the roadway and the only option was to quickly brake. What would I do?

Emergency braking in a curve must be completed immediately to be effective. Good posture boots flat on the boards (or pegs) and looking at the horizon must be present.

First action is to immediately straighten the motorcycle to an upright position and then using all four fingers squeeze the front brake, not jerk, to load the front end of the bike, (about 50% effort) then follow up with progressively squeezing the front brake lever until you are stopped. But what about the rear brake you may be asking? I always suggest just covering the rear brake lever and not actively pushing on the lever. Your body weight transferring forward during the front-end load will allow the right amount of pressure on the rear lever to keep the rear tire from locking or ABS activating. Look straight brake straight. If this technique is performed incorrectly you may end up losing control of the motorcycle.

The fundamental principle of mastering this technique is to practice. When was the last time YOU practiced emergency braking in a curve or just plain old emergency braking? Spend some time and money and invest in yourself and your life. Get with a motorcycle instructor to learn and practice these techniques under their watchful eye. Ride to Live, Live to Ride! It’s not just a cool marketing slogan.

Until next time, Ride Safe!!