Written by: Lucy Wyndham
A well-known motorcycle quote reads: “You don’t stop riding when you get old, you get old when you stop riding.” As much as they enjoy the freedom and exhilaration of riding a motorcycle, many enthusiasts put their passion on hold when they get married and start raising a family. Once the children are all grown up and your mortgage has been paid, however, you may once again have some extra money at your disposal to spend on your favorite pastime. If you plan to get back into motorcycling after a long hiatus, you should follow a few basic guidelines that will make re-entering the scene significantly easier.
Buy a beginner’s bike
While it may be tempting to buy the biggest and fastest bike you can find, it probably isn’t a great idea – not even if you racked up thousands of miles on your motorcycle when you were younger. If it has been a good few decades since you last got on a bike, chances are that the roads have become busier, the bikes faster, and your reactions significantly slower. It is therefore probably best if you give the Honda CBR 1100XX Blackbird a miss and opt for something more manageable like the Honda CBR 500 instead. If you’re a fan of both on- and off-road travel, both the Suzuki DR Z400 and the BMW G 310 GS are considered very good choices. Once you regain your confidence and have refreshed your riding capabilities you can always upgrade to a meaner machine if you crave a more powerful ride.
Take a riding course
If you haven’t ridden a motorcycle in quite some time, you will undoubtedly have some catching up to do. While you may be able to get reacquainted with a bike and the road on your own, a rider course will undoubtedly speed up the process. There are a number of riding classes to sign up for in Seattle, such as those offered by Evergreen Motorcycle Safety and The Seattle Motorcycle School. Taking such a class should by no means be seen as an indication of incompetence or ‘old-age’ but rather as an investment towards your own enjoyment and longevity.
Attend a motorcycle event
If you want to make your re-entry into the world of motorcycling as enjoyable as possible you should definitely consider attending some of the great motorcycle events and meet-ups that take place in the city. Some of the highlights of the 2019 motorcycling calendar included the annual August Greaseball, the Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, the Backfire Moto, and the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer 3-Day. There are also a variety of weekly and monthly meet-ups where anyone trying to get back into riding can spend some quality time socializing with a group of like-minded individuals.
If you are still physically able and mentally stable enough to ride a motorcycle, there is no reason why you cannot re-enter the scene. As long as you don’t expect to be quite as adventurous or as agile as you were a few decades ago, you are bound to still have a great deal of fun on your bike