Although it’s possible to learn how to ride a motorcycle without knowing how to ride a bike, it’s definitely not recommended! If you want to ride a motorcycle, you have to learn how to balance on two wheels first, which is faster, easier, and much safer on a bike! What’s more, in many areas MSF courses don’t accept people who can’t ride a bike. Therefore, best practice is to learn how to ride a bike first!
Let’s drill into the details and talk about these factors in detail.
We at PowerSportsGuide have compiled all you need to know into this post!
Can You Ride a Motorcycle if You Can’t Ride a Bike?
The four main reasons why you should learn to ride a bike before you start riding a motorcycle are as follows:
- Riding a bike is safer
- Bicycles are far cheaper to buy and fix
- You can learn to ride a motorcycle easier if know how to ride a bike
- MSF courses usually require this skill
Let’s drill into the details and talk about these factors in detail!
Riding a Bike is Far Safer
The main and most important reason why you should start to learn with a bicycle is that bikes are much safer than motorcycles!
Both of these machines feature two wheels, meaning that they have much of the same physics.
So, if you want to become a rider, you have to learn how to balance on two wheels first.
And general wisdom says that the learning process is easier, faster, and much less dangerous on a bicycle.
This is simply because bicycles are much slower and lighter than motorcycles.
While the average speed of a bicycle is about 10-20 mph, motorcycles can easily reach 100-186 mph depending on the make and model.
And to reach these amazing speeds you don’t need too much physical effort on a motorcycle, just twisting the throttle and controlling the clutch/shift lever.
And believe it nor not, you can even hit these amazing speeds on a motorcycle in a couple of seconds.
Yes, it’s a thrilling feeling, but the last thing you should do as a beginner is to ride at high speeds on a motorcycle. It can be dangerous in many ways!
If you can’t balance and handle a two-wheel machine with confidence, there is a high risk of you falling off. And the consequences of an accident are always way lower on a bicycle!
But even if you keep your speed low, the weight of the motorcycle can also cause a lot of trouble.
The average bicycle weighs about 15-25 pounds, while the weight of motorcycles ranges from 200 up to 1000+ pounds.
Even if you fall off a motorcycle at minimum speeds, it can easily end in serious injuries. And unfortunately if you are a beginner you are at much higher risk of having an accident.
This is the main reason why you should start on a 20-pound bicycle rather than on a heavy motorcycle!
Bicycles are Much Cheaper
Even if you don’t get hurt in an accident, you can still damage the motorcycle in many ways.
And unfortunately, motorcycles are very expensive to buy and repair! Besides the machine, your clothing and helmet can also be easily damaged.
In contrast, a used bicycle costs virtually nothing. And even if you drop it, thanks to its low weight and speed an accident hardly causes any damage.
Learning to Ride a Motorcycle is Easier if You Know How to Ride a Bike
The other main reason why you should start on a bicycle is that it helps you learn to operate a motorcycle faster and easier.
Learning to ride a powerful and costly motorcycle can be stressful for many beginners.
To speed up the learning process and make your job easier, best practice is to learn how to ride a bike first. If you can handle a bike with confidence, you will be able to balance much better on a motorcycle much easier.
On top of that, cycling is a great skill to have, and you never know when you will need it!
MSF Courses Usually Require It
Knowing how to ride a bicycle is the first step to learning how to ride a motorcycle.
This is the reason why in many areas MSF courses don’t accept applicants who can’t ride a bicycle!
Is Riding a Motorcycle Easier Than a Bike?
As a rule of thumb, riding a bike is easier than riding a motorcycle. They are slower, lighter, easier to handle, and require fewer skills to ride. On a motorcycle, you have to be familiar with the controls like the throttle, clutch, and shift lever. What’s more, turning with a bike is easier as you can turn it by simply moving the handlebars.
In contrast, motorcycles are difficult to steer as you have to lean into the turns.
Since motorcycles are much heavier than bikes, you have to lean into the curves which causes the bike to turn. Surprisingly, you don’t have to move the handlebar a lot, as the machine virtually “turns on its own.”
This technique is known as counter-steering, which requires practice to master.
Besides, motorcycles can go very fast and things happen really quickly at high speeds!
General wisdom says that you should know how to ride a bicycle before you start riding a motorcycle.
If you want to become a motorcycle rider, you definitely have to learn how to balance a two-wheel machine. And this process is far easier and safer on a bicycle! Why?
This is because compared to motorcycles, bicycles are lighter, much slower, and easier to handle.
This results in more safety, and less risk of injures/damage in a possible accident.
What’s more, cycling ability is typically a prerequisite for MSF courses in many areas.
Keeping safety in mind, it’s highly recommended that you learn to ride a bicycle first. Buying a used bike is really cheap and you can pick up the basics of riding with it on a weekend. This is the best way to start if you want to become a great motorcycle rider!