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How to: Riding in windy conditions
NEWS | 2 June 2021

How to - Riding in windy conditions

Let riding your Brixton be a breeze when you’re out in the wind…

When Mother Nature cranks her fan up, and the conditions start to knock the wind out of you, apply these techniques and get yourself safely all the way to point B.

Positioning

The wind is an incredibly unpredictable element, changing direction way quicker than we can keep track of. A fierce crosswind can be a very serious situation as a rider. At times the power of the wind is strong enough to force you off the road or into another lane of traffic. To maintain control over your motorcycle the first thing is to get tucked in, positioning your body as close to the bike as possible. Doing so reduces the amount of surface area the wind is able to act upon, lessening its strength and stopping it from dragging you across the road. You should always be conscious of the speed you’re riding at when you’re in windy conditions. Slow down a little to give yourself more control. You can use your knees to help stabilise your motorcycle by positioning them into the direction of the crosswind.

By leaning your bike towards the direction of the incoming crosswind you’ll be able to counteract its effects. Make sure you’re applying full concentration when doing this because if the wind drops suddenly, you’ll need to be quick and firm on the grips to pull yourself upright. When riding against a headwind you’ll want to be as streamlined as possible, so keep your arms and legs as close to your bike as can be. The same goes for riding with a tailwind. And with the wind giving you an extra boost, be mindful of your speed and the amount of stopping distance required when slowing down.

Gear

We always stress the importance of using the right gear in the many different environments and elements that you face as a motorcycle rider. It’s likely that the wind will pick up dirt and debris, whipping them around and impairing your vision. We’d recommend a full-coverage helmet, keeping the visor all the way down. If you’re neck is exposed, try wearing something like a bandana around it to keep out any dirt and debris.

If you’re riding without a visor, get yourself a pair of goggles and keep your vision clear. It’s important to be as comfortable as you can possibly be, this will allow you to keep your concentration fully where it needs to be – on the road. If you’re heading out into windy conditions, you should remove any tanks or saddlebags before starting your trip, as they only add to the surface area that the wind is able to act upon.

How to: Riding in windy conditions

Let riding your Brixton be a breeze when you’re out in the wind…

Fatigue

The wind knocks it out of you. Fatigue is a serious concern when you’re riding in windy conditions. It’s not just a physical battle wrestling against the wind, it’s also a mental one. Tiredness seriously affects your ability to ride safely, and you can be sure that it will creep up on you. We can’t stress enough the importance of taking a break and letting your muscles and mind regain their strength and sharpness. Keep yourself extra hydrated too to aid concentration. Use eye drops and ear plugs if necessary to make the ride as comfortable as possible.

Weather Report

Always check in with the weatherman before you leave A and head to B. The forecast can go a long way towards helping you decide which routes to take in the weather conditions at hand. You should also know when to hold both those hands up and let Mother Nature take this one by staying off your motorcycle.

Anticipating Hazards

The wind may be unpredictable, but you can learn to anticipate how certain objects are going to be affected by it. For example; large vehicles will temporarily protect you against the wind, but when it comes to manoeuvring out from behind them, it’s possible you’ll get caught up in their wind tunnel and be dragged one way or another. Learn to anticipate this and become familiar with it so you’re not caught off guard. Buildings are a little different, they’re not going to pull you towards them, but they can propel you with a rush of air as you come out from behind them. Riding in windy conditions is unavoidable as rider, but it doesn’t have to stop you from getting on your motorcycle