ok, so i was just over on the r6messagenet and found this. no idea if its a repost but its good info.
By Geoff Drake
I don't subscribe to the "stuff happens" philosophy. You need to make stuff happen.And this means recognizing symptoms and acting on them.In motorcycling,if you catch a problem early enough,you can often prevent a bad outcome.Ignore them at your peril.
I'm convinced that recognizing target fixation and working to correct it,can save your life.But what is target fixation?classic example occurs when you go into a corner a little too hot,at which point you only see the thing you want to avoid,like the guardrail or the edge of the road.And guess what?That's exactly where you go!
The thought of that guardrail got burned into your brain so hard,you couldn't see anything else,including a way out.Your vision was effectively narrowed to a tunnel,and that object was the only thing in your universe at that moment.Target fixation is really a case of our senses working against us.
The solution is simple.Force yourself to look through the corner.You might think it's more dangerous to look up the road than at the thing you want to avoid,but at that moment,when you have a slight feeling of panic,you must literally ignore the target fixation urge.Of course,there are no guarantees.If you are really going in too hot,or have set up improperly for the corner,you might still fall down.But avoiding target fixation and looking up the road will at least give you a fighting chance.It's always your best strategy.
2.The Death Grip
Perhaps the most obvious of the six symptoms is gripping the handlebar too firmly.Typically this happens as you enter a turn,and it begins with tightness in the hands and fingers,then the arms and shoulders,and in extreme situations,it might extend to the entire body.
To remedy this,you need to loosen your hands and arms,and learn to use other parts of your body to turn the bike.
You should always strive to be light on the bars and use your legs and knees to aid in turning.
As with all these symptoms,fixing the specific error (in this instance,tight hands and arms) is important,but it's just as important to examine the condition that produced the symptom.Reduce your speed,relax and figure out what caused it in the first place.Maybe your line was off,or you weren't using good body position,or your entry speed was too fast,or there was some gravel in the turn that gave you a scare.It's your job to see that picture in its entirety and act on it.
This occurs when a rider goes into a corner with too much speed,then tries to slow down.
Of course there is nothing wrong with slowing down in the corner if you can get away with it.
"But if you are entering the turn or in the middle of it at speed and you say,"Gee,I wish I was going 5MPH slower",then it's provably too late.The typical reaction is to hit the brakes.And the rear brake is the worst offender,because you will almost certainly slide out if you use it aggressively in mid-corner.
In a corner,you have a finite amount of traction.Let's give a number,say,100.If you touch the brakes when you're turning slowly on clean pavement,you may use 20 percent of that.Really aggressive cornering at high speed will use up 80-90 percent of available traction.Then,when you tap the brakes,it can take you past the limit,with predictable results.Gravel,wet surfaces and pavement irregularities exacerbate this.The solution is simple."If you detect this symptom in your own riding,slow down."
4.Chopping the Throttle
This symptom,as with mid-corner braking,occurs when you are in a turn and you suddenly think,"I'm going too fast."As a reaction you chop the throttle,which is exactly the opposite of what you should do."It's ironic that many of our normal inclinations are the opposite of what is actually good for us."
At lower speeds,this may do nothing worse than upset the chassis slightly.But if you're playing Ricky Racer approaching the limits of traction when this occurs,the rear-to-front weight transfer caused by suddenly rolling off the throttle may take you past the limit,overloading the front of the bike."And typically the front end will slide out when you chop the throttle."
"I'n my experience,most riders who exhibit this symptom feel they are going too fast-but they actually aren't."Rather than chopping the throttle,they should look through the corner and maintain their speed.Chopping the throttle is also indicative of poor planning and corner entry."Your entry should be such that you can give the bike a little throttle all the way through.This balances the traction forces in the front and rear for optimum control.
This is related to the two previous two symptoms,because it involves a sudden response to your surroundings in mid-corner.
For example,you attempt a sudden line change,either tightening your line or moving to the outside if your entry is too tight.
As with the two previous two symptoms,a mid-corner correction can devour available traction.And if you are already at the limit,
or the road conditions change,you may exceed the limit.
"The solution lies in the way you set up for the corner." Ideally,you will have one initial input into the bar,and the corner will be a smooth arc.
Most riders know the feeling of a great corner,where everything just clicks.But what happens when you have what he calls a "non-optimal emotional response?"In other words,you just don't feel good.That might sound pretty vague as a basis for action,but actually,this "feeling" is extremely important."Some of the best riders I know,when they have this feeling,are smart enough to click the pace down a notch until things feel right again."
If you are not feeling good,whether it's from indigestion,a work-related concern or anything else,your riding performance is compromised.This symptom should be a wake-up call for you.
Many riders compound the situation by ignoring the symptom.They think,"If I only had more guts,I'd go faster."They try to ride through it. And they crash.Whether you're a new rider or an experienced racer,you can't improve just by going faster and multiplying the effects of this symptoms.It's fine to challenge yourself on occasion but only when you're ready and the conditions are right.
Sometimes this anxious feelings results from riding with others who are faster.In the pressure to keep up,you can loose control and start making mistakes."In these situations,it's important to heed the signal and ride within yourself."
Putting it all together
If there is one theme to these instructions,it's self-awareness."The mistake is not the symptom itself." The mistake is pushing through the symptom in the hope that it will go away.A symptom should be your signal to click down,analyze the correction that's required and ride within your skill level."