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I did a search but didn't come up with what I was looking for. No end to the rain in sight here in Oregon so I want to soak up some good info. I was a former rider and I am still fairly confident, recently took a safety course for good measure as well. I am the type of person who always feels the need to learn more. Any advice on good books in the way of technique and safe riding practices?

Cheers,
Jon
 
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the twist of the wrist series by keith code is pretty good.

there's supposed to be an excellent book by kevin cameron, but i never read it.
 

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You'll get differing opinions on what is the best one.  I asked about resources at some point and good some good responses: http://www.ducatimonster.org/smf/index.php/topic,10296.0.html

FWIW, I read TOTW II and was really annoyed by the bolding and the astericks everywhere.  It was so distracting that I had to go back and read every sentence a couple of times.   :mad:  OTOH, I enjoyed Nick Inesach's (sp?) book, "Sport Riding Technique."

Edit:  forgot to ask.  Are you looking for more street-oriented or race-oriented resources?
 

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I wouldn't qualify or limit yourself to any one particular book as the best--each of these is a great read, but I've read the following so far, and liked them all.

Proficient Motorcycling, by David Hough
More Proficient Motorcycling, by David Hough

Hough's books are very thorough and more conversational in tone, and read like you're garnering information from a veteran tourer.  David's books are full of sage advice, and many of his recommended practices are endorsed by the MSF and other rider training programs.  With the overall theme of survival skills, these two books aren't as exciting for the sport rider, but keeping the rubber side down and learning the fundamentals really are a requirement before moving on.

A Twist Of The Wrist, Volume II, by Keith Code

I'd consider Keith Code to be the scientist of riding, because he has the unusual ability to focus in on cause and effect, and the bottom line of what works and what doesn't.  Some readers may find this one and its prequel to be too track-focused for the street rider, but I appreciate the analytical approach.

Total Control, by Lee Parks

This book by Lee Parks is really good, and especially good in the photography and graphic design department, which is to be expected, since Mr. Parks is also a graphic designer.  I found his chapter on Fear to be very insightful and fresh.  The inclusion of photographs of both correct and incorrect technique really helps you identify what you are doing compared to proper form, and I'd say of all the books listed here did the most for improving my skills.

Sport Riding Techniques, by Nick Ienatsch

I'd put this one up there with Total Control.  Nick has a lot of experience with what works and doesn't for training riders, because of his experience in rider training courses.  I'm re-reading this one now.
 

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I have TOW 1 and 2,  good to read, Pridmores "Smooth riding the Pridmore way",PITA to read,for me,he interrupted every lesson with stories about himself,so I never finished it,The best for me has been ,as mentioned previously  "Sport Riding Techniques"  by Nick Ienatsch,I have yet to read all of it,but got alot from it so far,he also authored "The Pace" and THe PaceII",both good street riding styles,If you havent read them,I think you can google up copies,,
 

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fzr400tony said:
the twist of the wrist series by keith code is pretty good.
Its not exactly a series - TOTW1 was the original version, almost exclusively aimed at racetrack technique. TOTW2 is a re-write which fleshed out the original books content with some tips about how to apply the same techniques to road riding situations as well. I'd suggest you ignore the first edition, everything in it so also in version 2, and more besides. If you are more interested in racing techniques, he's got another book called "The soft science of road racing" which is also a good read.

Not everyone agrees with Keith Codes philosophy, but its pretty clear that his training techniques, while sometimes glossing over details (or according to some, using incorrect explanations for various things), really work in terms in making you a better rider. That applies to both TOTW and his Superbike School training days (which at least over here where theres a franchise school, are pretty heavily based on the TOTW material).

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sport riding techniques, by nick ienatsch, imho, is crap. it's boring. it's safe. it contains nothing that i found of any value or use. i think if the msf book was glossy and had more pictures would be as good. it disappoints me. i liked his writings in sport rider and he's a really fast guy, i really think highly of him. anyone who finishes second in an ama class doing research? only to write such a blah book with no insights.... anyone want to change my opinion, post a page number with something of value.

agree or disagree with keith code's teachings, they are incredibly basic for advanced techniques. the book isn't exactly co-authored by j.d. salinger, but if you go out and start using his techniques as a foundation, they make life easy. i have found over the years that trail braking works well for me and i have started doing it. but i don't think i could have ever learned how to effectively trail brake without reading totw2 first.
 
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Piller said:
what's trail braking?
using the front brake as you turn the bike down to the apex (thereby increasing how deep you can go on the brakes).
 

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fzr400tony said:
anyone want to change my opinion, post a page number with something of value. 
Not looking to change your opinion only to say I find value in just about every exchange of information. Even if it doesn't shed as much light as you'd like anything remotely related to riding...and riding safely...is of use. It beats reading Cosmo.

Having said that. I have read Sport Riding Techniques and Twist of the Wrist II. I think they both merit a mention. But I did find Twist of the Wrist to be a bit more in depth. I'd read it first.....but wouldn't stop there. You can never have too much information.
 

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fzr400tony said:
agree or disagree with keith code's teachings, they are incredibly basic for advanced techniques.
Yeah, like I said, its not his _teachings_ that people disagree with - pretty much everybody I talk to agrees that the methods and techniques he teaches are excellent - perhaps over simplified a little so they are not entirely applicable once you get to be a serious club level racer, but for your average-to-good road rider they are wonderful techniques to make you a safer and faster rider.

The only thing I've heard people take exception to is some of his justifications behind his techniques - but if you get 3 motorcycle riding Physics PhDs together and ask _them_ to explain, say, countersteering... You are probably going to get 6 different mutually incompatible explanations about how it works :)

Having said that, TOTW2 is a great resource for anyone short of a national lever racer (and even they might get some useful stuff out of it) - its got heaps of tips in it that'd take somene on their own _years_ to work out for themselves. I actually make a point of digging it out of the bookshelf every now and then and skimming through it to remind myself of things and to self-check to see if I've been picking up bad habits lately...

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Pridmores book was not only a waste time, but paper too! It was horrible!
I got the feeling it was a big talk about me session for him . I also got the feeling if you didn't race, you don't really know how to ride, and to me that was a huge turn-off.

I was concidering taking his class this next month up in Denver but having read his book, I decided to pass...Yep it's that good! [thumbsup]
 

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fzr400tony said:
the twist of the wrist series by keith code is pretty good.

there's supposed to be an excellent book by kevin cameron, but i never read it.
As already mentioned, don't bother with the first Twist of the Wrist book. The second one is more oriented towards the street, but even that is sort of a book on how to get fast on the street.

Kevin Cameron's book is excellent, but it's not about riding, it's about undersanding how your bike works and how to adjust and modify it to make it better. The title is Sportbike Performance Handbook and is one of my favorites.

My other favorite is Proficient Motorcycling by David L. Hough. That book has had a bigger influence for good in my riding than any other and I highly recommend it.
 

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Lee Parks’ Total Control is about the only one that’s held my attention. Helped drag my technique out of the stone age.

Now I have to put it in to practice. :-[
 

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I've read TOW I & 2, 3/4 of Proficient Motorcycling, and Total Control.

TOW 1 & 2 are tougher to read and you either like them or you don't. I would say read those last if at all. Total control should be the first read and it incorporates some of Code's better thoughts in a clear and useful manner. This book will help you focus on key things to make you a better rider in many situations. Proficient Motorcycling is a great book for street strategies. If you feel like you need an MSF refresher or you want to think about some street situations more than how to get around a track quicker, then definitely read this one. I will get More Proficient Motorcycling when I get done with the 1st one.
 

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what's trail braking?
I'm still somewhat of a n00b, so my explanation may be off, but here is my take on it...

Many people follow the habit of breaking and getting your bike to the right speed for corner entry, and then as you enter the corner (or just before), letting off of the brake.

The biggest problem here is what happens when you hit the brake? The front end dives. What happens when you let go? The front-end lifts. This upsets the chassis of the bike, and it compromises traction. When cornering you want your wheels/chassis to be firmly planted on the pavement. You want those tires pressing downwards, giving you grip. It allows you to corner more safely, and faster as well with the added grip. So, how do you do this?

As mentioned, the "normal" (for lack of a better word, really) way does NOT help you with grip. Trail braking comes in here.

The idea is that instead of just letting off of the brake right before or just as you enter the turn, upsetting the chassis, you smoothly/evenly and slowly let off of the brake. This minimizes chassis upset and ensures a more smooth weight transmission. So the goal is to continue to brake as you are turning, but you are not pulling hard on the brakes, rather you are actually slowly releasing pressure during the turn. What you essentially want to accomplish is to be totally off of the brake by the turn apex, if not possibly just before, and then as soon as you are off the brakes you should *already* be transitioning to smoothly adding throttle.

To greatly simplify, you are easing off of the brakes until apex, at which point you are easing on the throttle. IOW, you are "trailing" off of the brakes during the turn. This has the added advantage of not having to brake so hard right before the turn, which means that you can enter the turn faster. And the smoother the brake to throttle transition, the faster you should be able to exit the turn, and not run wide in the process, and not upset the chassis, making the bike more stable as well.

HTH, and anyone please correct me if I am incorrect.

As far as the books go, I have the TOTW I CD, and the TOTW II DVD. I realy like the TOTW DVD, and think I should pick up the book to get more details on the techniques discussed. The video, IMHO, is not boring, and he does a great job demonstrating how/why countersteering works. I also like the DVD in the way it is presented. You have two actors riding bikes on curvy roads. They talk to each other about why their turning isn't so smooth, etc. and another rider gives them tips, and you have some good visuals to help as well.

Sport Rider magazine has a good riding techniques column every month, and all of the ones from back issues I think up to the previous month, are archived on their website, free to read. There's some really good stuff there, and the range is very wide. They also publish once a year a compilation issue of al of the previous year's tips. I think that comes out around Jan or Feb?

There was a UK reality show called Superbike School. It was 6 episodes, and it follows 3 students as they attend the UK California Superbike School (Keith Code's school). Of course you don't get all the details, but there is enough good instruction in the show to give you a few things to work on. And you can watch all 6 episodes for free on YouTube here:


I think the Proficient Motorcycling and Total Control books (I have both, and "Maximum Control" by Pat Hahn) are great books. They cover a variety of topics, and are mostly dedicated to street riding techniques. IOW, they are less "track oriented" than say the TOTW books, but both types of books can apply to both types of riding.

Another good resource is the 3 DVD Street Smarts set:
[ame]http://www.amazon.com/Street-Smarts-Motorcycle-DVD-Volumes/dp/B000TK5TVQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1379405799&sr=8-1&keywords=street+smarts+motorcycle[/ame]

Great stuff about safety, riding techniques, and the 3rd DVD is somewhat more geared to riding faster on or off the track. And the 3 DVD set is relatively cheap. It runs at about the same price as any of the books mentioned.
 
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