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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 04:18 PM Thread Starter
 
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Women!!!

Now that I have your attention...I was asked to provide a female perspective of my experience riding with LCR for other women (whether they be board members or significant others of board members) in hopes of getting more women riding.

My motorcycle riding background is very limited. I bought a 2002 Honda VTR 1000 in April 2004. It is alot of bike for a new rider but because of its narrower frame and weight distribution, I felt more comfortable on it. I also took the MSF course in April 2004 and learning to ride on a 250 Rebel was confidence inspiring. At first I was afraid to ride my bike because I did not want to wreck or drop it. Therefore, I rented a Harley sportster and my boyfriend and I went out for an all day ride totaling 400+ miles. Although that increased my confidence, I was still afraid to get on my bike. My first ride on my bike was to Kenís CLSB suspension day. We met at a gas station. After filling up with gas I pulled my bike to the side and I stopped too hard and was unable to hold the bike up and dropped it. Any confidence I had quickly went out the door.

I am what most would consider a slow sport bike rider. On group rides I am always at the back of the group and others have to constantly wait for me. At first I felt bad but I am riding within my comfort zone. Things that frighten me the most include corners, riding in the rain and high speeds.

While looking for a school to help me become a better rider, I came across Learning Curves Ladies Only Classes. I e-mailed Kim Olsen (CLSB member) and asked her opinion of the school. She gave great reviews. I then called and spoke to the instructor and he told me that he has had students who ride 200-500 miles a year and do not like going over 40 mph complete his class. He reiterated that the class was being held at a track to avoid the other obstacles of people, cars, etc. Between the fact that the class included women only and all the positive feedback, I decided to sign up.

There were 3 women and 2 instructors. One of the women had done track days while the other had been riding for a much longer period of time and wanted to improve her skills. My first session on the track consisted of two laps in 15 minutes and I was lapped by the other two women. I did not enjoy myself and I was petrified of wrecking my bike. The instructors talked with me, evaluated where my concerns were and discussed things to do to alleviate them. The next session was 100% better and after each session I continued to improve. Each session, I would choose different things to work on. The first was getting to know the track and not riding white-knuckled. In session two, I got my butt off the seat and looked through the corners. It is amazing how much easier it is to turn with your weight to one side and how slow it seems you are going when you are not looking right in front of you. In session three I increased my speed, worked on braking with the front brakes only, looked through the corners and got off the seat in a smoother fashion. Session four and five I continued to practice all the aforementioned skills. Initially, I felt intimidated because of the other two more experienced riders but by the end of the day, our lap times were close and they stayed within my site.

The classroom sessions gave us different things each session to work on. For example, breaking down the corner and knowing when to engine brake, brake and downshift; maintenance throttle; getting the body off the bike and when. We were not only told what to do but also explained why it works. Rick and Jason also adjusted our bikes to ďfitĒ us. I had my brake and shift lever adjusted and took the play out of my throttle all of which helped me feel more comfortable on my bike.

The low student to instructor ratio was wonderful. The fact that it was all females was also an added bonus. Motovid was taping our sessions so we could see what we looked like (because we are never leaning as much as we think we are) and why we made the mistakes we did. Everyone was very supportive and was willing to answer any question. I left the class with a wealth of knowledge that I feel years of riding may not have taught me. I now feel more confident and at ease when riding. I rode my bike home that night and because of the class, I enjoyed the ride much more.

I would strongly recommend this class to any women who wants to improve her skills whether she be a novice or a veteran rider. The fact that it is on a track is just so you can sharpen your skills in a safe environment.

Enjoy and safe riding,
Michelle
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 04:29 PM
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I didn't do the women's only day because I would have to take off work. And I've spent my available vacation days doing track days already!

I can relate to your first laps on the track. I did the Team Chicago day at Grattan, and I had about as much sportbike time as you. I was quite slow, and my asshole guy friends actually got pissed at me (and no, I still haven't forgiven them for ruining my day. ) The women's day would have been a much better first-time experience, being away from the ball-scratchers.

I too started on a Sportster 883 Hugger, and it was GREAT learner bike.

I'm signed up for the Sept. 18th Learning Curves day and if someone gives me money for the Harley sometime soon, I'll actually go! Have you found out that motorcycling kills your budget?

I got a race license this year, and it really just allows someone like me to do the LP Sportrider track days for only $75. At the last one, I shared the beginner group track with about 3 other bikes. Good stuff!
post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:04 PM
 
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Iím glad you found the class helpful and have gained some more confidence too bad they women's only classes are always on weekdays

The only thing Iím a bit confused about, why keep lap times? This class was focusing on teaching women how to be better riders, not faster riders. Are they saying that faster is better? I would think learning the proper cornering technique would be more important than learning to be fast.
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:05 PM
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cool.. i'm for sure gonna get the GF into this.. but first need to find her a bike.

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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by VIVID1
The only thing Iím a bit confused about, why keep lap times? This class was focusing on teaching women how to be better riders, not faster riders. Are they saying that faster is better? I would think learning the proper cornering technique would be more important than learning to be fast.
it's just a measuring stick.

I'm sure they don't emphasize the "faster" aspect in the class.
But it is a natural result that as you do grow your skills, confidence and explore your capabilities that you will find yourself able to do the tasks that you attempted in the past more easily...and therefore faster
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by VIVID1
The only thing Iím a bit confused about, why keep lap times? This class was focusing on teaching women how to be better riders, not faster riders. Are they saying that faster is better? I would think learning the proper cornering technique would be more important than learning to be fast.
True! All the schooling I've received has emphasized that for the first few times out on the track, don't even keep lap times. They've even said that while you're learning the PROPER technique, you'll often find that you might go slower just because you're focusing on the things you should be: Body positioning, lines, etc.
post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:17 PM
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Why keep lap times? Because lap times are a clear and defined means of benchmarking your progress. It's a tool for quantifying your improvement. Certainly, it's not the only tool in the box, but it is a very objective one.

Michelle, I am so glad you had such a good time with Rick & Co.! Hopefully more women will take advantage of the opportunity - and the fun!

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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:19 PM Thread Starter
 
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The boyfriend of the woman in our class that had prior track experience kept the lap times. They were in no way a part of the class. Speed was not at all emphasized, accuracy and proper skills were though.

Michelle
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:23 PM
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I'm a bit confused why some women feel ill at ease when men are included in an activity. Men have been subjected to mandatory coed activities for some time now. Actually for quite some time now. Just curious, is there a mens only class. I'll bet there isn't. I know the ladies feel less intimidated when only confronted by other women. Isn't it a bit sexist though?


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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by SloRoll
I'm a bit confused why some women feel ill at ease when men are included in an activity. Men have been subjected to mandatory coed activities for some time now. Actually for quite some time now. Just curious, is there a mens only class. I'll bet there isn't. I know the ladies feel less intimidated when only confronted by other women. Isn't it a bit sexist though?


Boy, am I gonna get it now.
I think this is a good one for Rachel to handle. Maybe if you are lucky, she will not hand you your balls on a plate.
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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sport Chick
I think this is a good one for Rachel to handle. Maybe if you are lucky, she will not hand you your balls on a plate.
Well, if you insist.
My first track experience was so shitty, I want my money back. I had never been on the track, I was scared shitless, I was a Harley rider, so the whole sportbike thing was still new to me and the track thing was new.

We did a first run session, and the group I ran in was comprised of 2 of my friends, a couple others, and the instructor. Gratten has blind corners, decreasing radius stuff, etc and I was blown away and taking it slow. I had never seen this track, and you gotta learn the track.

We get back from session one, and everybody gives me attitude. "That sucked" and "You coulda picked it up a bit" from everybody, including the instructor.

After the immense brow-beating I gave them, I got my apologies. But the fact is, many men are perpetually engaged in this pissing contest as though being fast somehow reconciles the lack of sex they got in high school, being picked for second string on the football team, not having a good job, or not having a large penis.

Women simply aren't this competitive AS A RULE, so the setting is more laid-back and fun.

Oh, and I don't want to hear any lip from those of you who have one exception to what I said above...I know that you know this one guy who has a big penis and is fast (that will be the most popular response) or someone who knows a girl who is competitve. Save it. I know I'm generalizing, and I don't care.
post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:43 PM Thread Starter
 
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Now, back to original purpose of this thread...let other women know that the LCR Women's Only Classes are a great way to improve your skills and build confidence no matter how much experience you have.

Michelle
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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 05:52 PM
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Slo roll do you need some advil? I'm sure your back hurts after diging a hole that deep for yourself.

Michelle I'm glad it helped you. Nothing feels better then overcoming some fears.

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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 06:39 PM
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I'm glad you had such a good experience, Michelle! There's nothing like overcoming fears and learning new skills. It's awesome that it was such a small class and you got lots of personalized instruction. Maybe I'll have to do something like this class when I get a bike again - help me regain confidence!
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 06:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Slowass
I know that you know this one guy who has a big penis and is fast
I'm not that fast

Now that my wife has her bike maybe she can get in one of these classes. She too has concerns with getting on the track with a bunch of guys. She has heard a lot of sh*t from people for getting into what is generally a male dominated activity. But I've already seen her dragging her knee around a parking lot on pocketbikes and I don't doubt she'll end up doing the same thing on the RR. I just hope I can stay faster than her (I think I'll always have a bigger penis than her )

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post #16 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 07:06 PM
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Slowass, Your already signed up and PAID for Fast Trax 2 days school on Oct. 8-9, 2004. The LCR will mainly be going over everything you learned at Team Chicago Race School. The Fast Trax is a 2 days course that will get much more into technic. I wish I could go but the 2 days course is $525.

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post #17 of 30 (permalink) Old 08-31-2004, 10:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by rdrash
Slo roll do you need some advil? I'm sure your back hurts after diging a hole that deep for yourself.

Michelle I'm glad it helped you. Nothing feels better then overcoming some fears.
Thanks, but no Advil necessary. Just an old dog's take on the times. First there was a time when the girls didn't even try to compete with the guys. Then came the time when the girls demanded to be included in ALL the boys games. Now, it seems the girls are tryin' to get separate again. Only this time they're playin' some of the traditionally male dominated sports, like motorcycle racing. They worked hard for a long time to be included with the guys. Just askin' for their take on it. Maybe it's just to get away from the leghumpers. Guys don't worry about LH's. All they have to deal with is possible rejection and ego deflating remarks.

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post #18 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 12:06 AM
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I never, ever intent to cause Chuck to need Advil.

And you're right -- I just prefer to be away from the male-ego driven pissing contest...
post #19 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 12:20 AM
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I can see why one would wonder about keeping lap times, but figure this. If your getting faster just because your trying harder and braking later and what not, sure, that's not really good. But if your getting faster and only trying as hard as when you started out or less but your technique is improved then yes, keeping a record of lap times is a great tool.

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post #20 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 12:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by SloRoll
I'm a bit confused why some women feel ill at ease when men are included in an activity. Men have been subjected to mandatory coed activities for some time now. Actually for quite some time now. Just curious, is there a mens only class. I'll bet there isn't. I know the ladies feel less intimidated when only confronted by other women. Isn't it a bit sexist though?


Boy, am I gonna get it now.
Actually, my wife feels the most comfortable when ridng with me. If it were a track situation I'd rather see her ride with women only because they tend to be less aggresive than men, and aren't ego-driven like we tend to be. I can totally see why women don't feel comfortable riding around men, especially on the track.

And to Michele. Congrats on your new found skills, and I'm glad you had a good time.

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post #21 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 01:26 AM
 
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Glad you had a wonderfull time learning new stuff. And I'll forgo the pissing contest stuff.....BUT.....

I think(and you probably know it still), you bit off waaaaaaaaaay more then you needed to when buying the size bike you did. Just think if you had half the bike you do now, how much LESS intimidated you'd feel riding.
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post #22 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 07:45 AM
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That's so cool you learned so much, Michelle. My girlfriend read your other write-up and enjoyed it. She's still thinks riding track would be too scary for her. Maybe you two can go riding together sometime and talk about your experience.

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post #23 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 08:19 AM
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Michelle glad you had a good experience. I have ridden with you a couple of times and have been very impressed with your "maturity" toward riding, you ride your ride, not anyone else's, that IMHO is the path towards being a good rider. Next Flat 4 Tour, your leading sweetie So I can soak up what you learned And who said you can't teach an old school dog new tricks, maybe you can break all the bad riding habits I have learned in the last 30 odd years And if I haven't mentioned it before, it was great riding with you again

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post #24 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 08:29 AM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by SloRoll
Thanks, but no Advil necessary. Just an old dog's take on the times. First there was a time when the girls didn't even try to compete with the guys. Then came the time when the girls demanded to be included in ALL the boys games. Now, it seems the girls are tryin' to get separate again. Only this time they're playin' some of the traditionally male dominated sports, like motorcycle racing. They worked hard for a long time to be included with the guys. Just askin' for their take on it. Maybe it's just to get away from the leghumpers. Guys don't worry about LH's. All they have to deal with is possible rejection and ego deflating remarks.
I see where the confusion is now...
As mentioned in the original post, this was requested to let other women know my experience and what I learned. I did NOT take this class with any intent on racing. This class was intended as a "semi-private" lesson to help me be a better and safer motorcycle rider. The fact that it is done on the track takes most of the obstacles of other people, cars, etc out of the picture so that I can work on skills. And just to reiterate, the lap times were not a part of this class they were kept by a boyfriend of my classmate.

Can we now let the thread be what it intended on being...

Michelle
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post #25 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Slowass


Women simply aren't this competitive AS A RULE, so the setting is more laid-back and fun.

F_cking Women are just as competitive as the next person and women take the greatest pleasure in beating the pants off ANY other WOMAN or MAN!! Women are just some much more subtle about it!

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post #26 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 08:41 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sport Chick
I did NOT take this class with any intent on racing. This class was intended as a "semi-private" lesson to help me be a better and safer motorcycle rider. The fact that it is done on the track takes most of the obstacles of other people, cars, etc out of the picture so that I can work on skills.
There are just too many people here that do "track" days and for them when they hear the word "track" this means racing.

Quote:
Originally posted by Chills
She's still thinks riding track would be too scary for her.
I don't know you GF Chills, but I think she would benefit from the class Michelle did. Forget about it being the "track" she needs to know that what YOU do on the track is not what SHE will be doing when she takes a class.

Last edited by VIVID1; 09-01-2004 at 08:47 AM.
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post #27 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 09:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by VIVID1
There are just too many people here that do "track" days and for them when they hear the word "track" this means racing.

I don't know you GF Chills, but I think she would benefit from the class Michelle did. Forget about it being the "track" she needs to know that what YOU do on the track is not what SHE will be doing when she takes a class.
Good point, Anna. I'm sure she'll read this thread. I'd like her to go on one of your girl's only rides, but your Sept 11th ride is the day we are flying to Alaska.

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post #28 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 09:21 AM
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Great writeup!

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post #29 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 09:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by VIVID1
There are just too many people here that do "track" days and for them when they hear the word "track" this means racing.
Exactly. Track days and schools really shouldn't be confused with RACING. There is no "NESBA Midwest Regional Championship"... there is no first-lace trophy or contingency money available for completing a VisionSports/Learning Curves or Keith Code school...

All are fun but each is different in purpose and intent.

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post #30 of 30 (permalink) Old 09-01-2004, 11:26 AM
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
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I totally want in on that class... as bluebusa mentioned earlier I am nervous about getting on the track with mostly men. Wether they mean to or not, sometimes they can be very intimidating. I know I could hang with the best of them, and probably kick a lot of their asses on the track but I want to learn the right way to do and not get myself killed trying. Going to one of the track days is like going to the races cause those guys are all crazy about it. I wouldnt feel like it would be a learning experience. How do I find out more about the learning curves. Im sooo in.
Spicy1 is offline  
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