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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Few more newbie questions:

I was told that you only countersteer to INITIATE the turn. Once in the turn/big long curve, you no longer countersteer but you lean and counterbalance the bike (depending on your speed). In other words, once you are into the turn/curve you straighten out the bars from the countersteer angle.

1)Is this correct, or do you continue to maintain the countersteer throughout the length of the turn/curve?

2)Also, at what speed do you start using countersteering as opposed to
turning the handle bars?

Thanks everyone. So far you guys have answered all my newbie questions smartly. Glad I joined this group!
 

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BOOBIES
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if you straighten the handle bars, you straighten the bike.

and everybike is different as to when you switch from counterbalancing to countersteering, its got to do with overall weight of bike, how high up the center of mass is on the bike and a bunch of other physics crap, you'll know after 10 minutes of riding any particular bike, mine is about 25 km, i think that is generally the speed, but it will vary with all bikes, just go out coast at different speeds and see what happens when you turn the bars, does the bike dip, or does it start to turn with the wheel.

experiments are the fun way to learn, unless you're checking what will happen when you low side into a highway barrier.
 

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Thanks for that...
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It even says the speeds at which you start to counter-steer in the ICBC handbook for licencing. Does this mean you haven't even began to read about licencing?
 

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assuming that you have not taken a riding course...!?....

search the net for vids and demos,,,there are a lot of them out there...
reading bout it is diff than seeing it in action or doin it yourself...but im pretty sure you'll get a lot of info here....

good luck,,,ride safe!!!!...:thumbup
 

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Swivel on it
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I agree with Keith Code. He says "one day all bikes will come with stickers that say "this vehicle counter steers. If you don't understand this, see a professional instructor before riding"".
 

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If you've ridden a bicycle, you are familiar with counter steering, but aren't aware of it.
If you still ride a bicycle now, try this and amaze yourself....
Ride with one hand on the bars, and as you're riding down a (safe) stretch of road or parking lot, make big lazy "ess," curves. Instinctively, you are pushing and pulling on the bars.
Try the same thing with your motorycycle.
You'll find yourself pushing and pulling on the bars to initiate each ess curve.

That's countersteering.
 

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It even says the speeds at which you start to counter-steer in the ICBC handbook for licencing. Does this mean you haven't even began to read about licencing?
Screw the handbook, you counter steer ALWAYS,
unless you are rolling backward, or have negative trail...
 

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Vindicated
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Few more newbie questions:

I was told that you only countersteer to INITIATE the turn. Once in the turn/big long curve, you no longer countersteer but you lean and counterbalance the bike (depending on your speed). In other words, once you are into the turn/curve you straighten out the bars from the countersteer angle.
Search it out but no, you will countersteer for every movement, even changing lanes, avoiding obstacles on the road, etc.

When in a turn, you don't need to continue to push on the handlebar. If you need to tighten your turn, you push harder on the bar. When you exit the turn, you push the other way to straighten out. Don't lean to make the bike move. You lean because you lean with the bike's angle and sometimes to change the dynamics of the centre of gravity.
 

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RS 03.08.74 ~ 02.11.06
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Hey lightning21,

I got all messed up in the beginning when I tried to figure out what the fuck was counter steering. It messed me up beyond belief in my written test and then made me all nervous in the class 6 exam.

As a somewhat experienced rider, all I can tell you, is forget about what you SHOULD be doing and just ride the turns in the most comfortable way for yourself. Countersteering is a very natural process of riding and if you never learned about it prior to riding, you would automatically do it anyways, without thought.

Just my 2 cents:flashy
 

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One Lump Sum
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:imwithstu

I didn't even know what countersteering was until my buddy told me a couple weeks ago. And I've been riding for years...I never even noticed that I was doing it! I just got on the bikes and rode, all this stuff comes naturally.
 

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It all comes naturally up to a point and then it all hits the fan when you really need it.

You've all heard the phrases "Look where you want to go and the bike will follow" and "Never look at what you don't want to hit" (ie- target fixation). Well, both of these are just boogie man tales that are promoted by folks that don't take the time to conciously learn to counter steer and then use it in a concious manner until it's a programed reflex.

Those of you that think it comes naturally probably rode bicycles a lot as kids. And since bicycles and motorcycles all steer the same way of course it all comes naturally. But if you take the time to see how it works and how you can learn to use it all the time then it'll be a more powerful tool and you will find that you can avoid all the issues with target fixation or even freezing up just when you need that "natural" skill that you never conciously cemented into your brain.

Anyhow, I ranted enough in that other thread that's linked up in the third or fourth post on this thread. So all I can suggest is that anyone that thinks they do this naturally or that they only need to use it on special occasions or that it's a racer's trick or any other excuses should go read my suggestions for using a bicycle to help learn this stuff and practice those drills.
 

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I don't think there's many of us who DIDN'T ride bicycles as kids...
And so did I. But you know what? While it helped me at first it was also the cause of my near disasters because like so many here I was going on instinct and when it came time to really crank on the bars to save myself from a swim in a Richmond River (commonly called ditches out that way) I did the wrong thing because I didn't understand what I was doing and steered the wrong way.

It wasn't until a few years later when I was riding a trials motorcycle that I learned what counter or push steering really was and began to use it in a concious manner. Ive used it conciously for both bicycle and motorcycle riding since and it's not imprinted on my reactions as I found out during a few close calls with my motorcycle racing.

Those saves and my near disasters in my early motorcycle history is why I'm so adamant about this whole topic. The darn thing is that it'll prove itself to anyone that cares to test it. It's not about faith or divine guidance or some sort of mystic mumbo jumbo about a do it one way under so and so kph and the other way over. It's about pushing and pulling on the bars in the right manner with an open mind.
 

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And so did I. But you know what? While it helped me at first it was also the cause of my near disasters because like so many here I was going on instinct and when it came time to really crank on the bars to save myself from a swim in a Richmond River (commonly called ditches out that way) I did the wrong thing because I didn't understand what I was doing and steered the wrong way.

It wasn't until a few years later when I was riding a trials motorcycle that I learned what counter or push steering really was and began to use it in a concious manner. Ive used it conciously for both bicycle and motorcycle riding since and it's not imprinted on my reactions as I found out during a few close calls with my motorcycle racing.

Those saves and my near disasters in my early motorcycle history is why I'm so adamant about this whole topic. The darn thing is that it'll prove itself to anyone that cares to test it. It's not about faith or divine guidance or some sort of mystic mumbo jumbo about a do it one way under so and so kph and the other way over. It's about pushing and pulling on the bars in the right manner with an open mind.

For what it is worth, I consider countersteering "natural", to the extent that nobody can ride a sportbike around the block without counter steering. What isn't natural (for me) is always looking far ahead, where you want to go. I believe that if you are looking far ahead (and have enough experience to be confident, regardless of whether you know what countersteering is or not), you will instinctively countersteer to get out of trouble. What is also definitely true, is that if you deliberately think about countersteering (and using your legs, and shifting your body) you can have a significant impact on how quickly and effectively you steer. For instance, if you countersteer the minimum amount needed to initiate the turn, and then start using your body, you will most likely not turn as quickly as you would if you countersteer more agressively at the outset. The single thing that has by far the most impact on my riding is consciously looking as far ahead as possible.

Again, for what it is worth.
 

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Got Hammer?
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Some bikes don't hold a line as well as others when you're in a turn and you'll find yourself having to push it down (countersteering) the whole way through the turn. Others just drop in and stay there with little effort. It's something that you can either ride around or change the setup of the bike to your liking. Ride a bike and you'll figure it out.
 

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Hey lightning21,

I got all messed up in the beginning when I tried to figure out what the fuck was counter steering. It messed me up beyond belief in my written test and then made me all nervous in the class 6 exam.

As a somewhat experienced rider, all I can tell you, is forget about what you SHOULD be doing and just ride the turns in the most comfortable way for yourself. Countersteering is a very natural process of riding and if you never learned about it prior to riding, you would automatically do it anyways, without thought.

Just my 2 cents:flashy
This is a very destructive remark which could cost a new rider dearly. Sorry.

If you do not instill in your mind a conscious, deliberate countersteering habit as early as possible you will never progress to be a safe and skilled rider. If you cannot do it you should not ride a motorcycle at all.

It is truly a life saving and one of the most if not the most important element in a good riding practice. Period.
 
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