Tip-top gear. A pink motorcycle helmet and funny gloves.

Smiling Brianne with pink helmet in motorcycle class

Motorcycle safety classes fill quickly in my area*, so I really lucked out when I was able get into a class. How? The night I went to record a video, I spontaneously took one of the no-show's spots (with only a little nudging by one of the RiderCoaches).

One problem with this spontaneity and my overall lack of motorcycle experience: I had no gear. The Motorcycle Safety Course teaches that safe motorcyclists wear all their personal protective gear all the time, including:

  • A Department of Transportation (DOT) approved helmet
  • Sturdy, over-the-ankle boots
  • Shatterproof eye protection
  • Full-fingered leather gloves
  • A riding suit, or jacket and pants

Of the above, I had none. Well, I have a pair of wellies that I love, but it actually didn't want to run the risk of ruining them. Fortunately I found some boots for a decent price at a discount shoe store. Since we were riding at low speeds (under 20 mph); in a parking lot; in a supervised, learning environment; students without such gear were allowed to substitute any full-fingered gloves (I went with gardening gloves), sunglasses, a long-sleeved shirt and jeans. (It was stressed those substitutions were not acceptable outside of this course.) As for the helmet, one of the people I sat next to in class worked at a motorcycle dealership and was able to hook me up with a pink one on clearance. Well this was more of a matte dusty mauve in color, but beggars can't be choosers.

I'm guessing you've got quite an image of one stylish motorcycle diva in your head, but one nagging question remains, were there little flowers on my gardening gloves? I hate to disappoint, but they were my husband's, so they were blue and plain (and dirty). Just think what I would have looked like had I thrown caution to the wind and donned by purple rain boots. Needless to say, I'm pretty easy to spot in videos.

Next up, I'll talk about what we learned during the classroom portion of the class. Stay tuned.

*As I mentioned above, Motorcycle Safety Courses fill quickly in my area. You basically have to sign up by March. That's because in Michigan, the program is one of the best paths to earn a Cycle Endorsement and there's a finite number of resources (read: motorcycles, places to hold courses and spring/summer weekends). I can't speak to how it works elsewhere. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation's website can help identify a course near you.

Your safety is important to us. Stay safe on your motorcycle.

Related articles

You may also like

A smiling child in car seat.

Keeping your most precious cargo safe on the road

There are enough things to worry about when taking care of children, making sure they are safe in the car should be second nature...

Read the article

A toy car that has crashed.

Distracted driving — Not worth the risk

This story has a happy ending because the most serious consequence was that my van was totaled. But statistics tell us that things could have been much worse. Here are some scary facts...

Read the article

A car thief attempting to break into a car.

Car theft prevention tips

Cars are stolen all the time and at any time. It's important to make sure yours is less susceptible to theft. Use our car theft prevention tips...

Read the article