Rider Control When Stopped – or Not (Video)

motorcycle tip overHOW OFTEN DO YOU DROP YOUR MOTORCYCLE? I don’t mean crash it, although that would certainly be a pertinent answer. In this instance, I simply mean dropping it while you’ve stopped, or while riding very slowly. One example would be pulling up to a stop sign and putting your foot down on some loose sand, or wet leaves, or in some way losing traction under your foot, and then losing the bike as it falls over.

Another example would be putting down the kickstand while dismounting the bike only to find that the side stand wasn’t fully extended into its locked position, which leaves the bike unsupported as it falls over.

Or, as in the example in the photo above and in the video below, a friend (Lance) dropping his bike when the front tire got hung up in some soft sand, while riding slowly. We were on a 1600 mile, 5-day, Central and Northern California ride and were on our way to a National Forest campsite when the dirt road turned into soft sand.

He was not injured, nor was the bike damaged. And he demonstrated the attitude of a true professional: “Oh well, I’ll handle this better next time.” And when we headed back out of the forest the next morning, he had no problem with the same difficult spot in the dirt road.

I mentioned to Lance that it happens to many riders and it’s not a big deal (he considers himself a relatively new rider). It certainly has happened to me a number of times over the years and it usually just results in some momentary embarrassment, with no personal injury, although sometimes bike damage does occur.

But it left me wondering: How often does it really happen to other riders? And how many riders are willing to confess to momentary lapses of good control, in an otherwise non-threatening situation?

It doesn’t seem to take long for some beginning motorcyclists to consider themselves competent riders. I know I thought I was reasonable good within my first few thousand miles or so, back in the 70’s. But after several hundred thousand miles under my belt, and the recognition that I still consider I’m learning, I sometimes wonder how I survived those first years.

The point is that many riders consider themselves to be in good control of their bikes at all times. But the concept of letting it fall over while stopped, or nearly stopped, seems to belie such a notion – even if only for an instant.

Regardless, if you are willing to share such hapless moments on your own bike, please add your experiences below regarding how often you have found yourself picking up your motorbike after it tipped over when you were stopped, or almost stopped, or even just getting going….

MCg

MCg

"Wandering Around" is my motto: Up and down the California Coastal Ranges; the Rockies; the Appalachians; the beaches of both North American coasts; and everywhere in between. Any two wheels with a motor and a full gas tank will make me happy.
MCg

117 thoughts on “Rider Control When Stopped – or Not (Video)

  • Everyone can learn to sit on a bike and take off, but not everyone should be on a motorcycle because not everyone has the proper “feel” and “insticnt” to provide the right kind of input. It’s the part you just can’t learn in a text book or class room. Dropping a bike should NEVER NEVER happen – period. When I read about someone forgetting to unlock their handlbars or not putting the kickstand down either all of the way or not at all, makes me cringe. Riding takes your full and undivided attention.
    How would you like for an airplane pilot to say oh I forgot something…. Probably shouldn’t be a pilot.
    You can’t blame gravel or the ground either, we should always anticipate for it. If you choose to ride a bike that weighs as much as a truck, then I hope you know what you are doing. If you’re one of those who speeds up when you should be slowing down or slows down when you should be speeding up, or don’t know when you should pull the clutch in or how much brake pressure to apply — Just stay off and get a smart car or something.

    Oh and if you’re one of those Harley or cruiser riders that speed up just because you see me come along on my Hayabusa sport bike —– HANG IT UP because you touch me, you don’t have the performance or handling capabilities of my bike. I have to teach V-Rods and V-Max riders a lesson all of the time. :)

  • Ive been riding since 1967. Many bikes, many sizes. My last thre bikes were wings. Very heavy.. My GL1500 is in the 800 pound range and, I have to say, I drop it at least once every 3 or 4 months.
    The crash bars protect it from damage so I’m not too concerned.
    Picking it up is another matter (LOL). At least 2 people are needed to right it. Sometimes I have to leave it to find someone to help me.
    Fun Fun Fun…

  • It’s happened to me twice (both my fault).

    Never twist around to the right without your side stand down while checking your brake light. This was seemingly harmless as the bike went down to the left I tried to save it but that irresistible force just puled it down. Somehow I caught my right shin on the engine guard or foot peg and got one cantaloupe sized hematoma that has finally gone down. That was well over a year ago. More recently I was on a solo ride to the mountains and stopped at a pull off for a break and discussion with another rider. Never start the bike without sitting on it. For some reason I thought I was in neutral, started just fine with the clutch in but lurched forward when I released it.

    In either case, only one minor injury and two bruised egos (no room for them anyway).

    MJ

  • Dropped my Honda ST1300 in the driveway. Too much front brake while stopping on a slight incline. No damage to the bike but an absolute bitch to pick up by myself. It’s the same as the saying about two kinds of riders. Those who have dropped their bikes and those who will.

  • Last summer I was backing my bike into a parking spot. The sprinkler system had been on either the previous night or that morning, and while the blacktop was wet, my boots had good grip. Unfortunately I did not realize the white parking lines were slippery when wet. As I backed into my space, one of my boots hit the line and down I went. Fortunately there was no damage to me or the bike. It was just my pride that was hurt.

  • I have been riding for about 5 years now and have well over 30,000 miles under the belt, most of that being two up riding with my wife on a Honda VTX 1300 Retro. One day two seasons ago, my wife and I had just filled up the ride and we were leaving the gas station. The station is on a corner with a traffic light and the light has a set-back stop line so that people coming out the station have room enough to pull out in-front of the car first at the light if they want to. Well I chose not the pull all the way out but just enough to at least give the first guy the chance to go or offer for me to go first. Of course in doing that I had now positioned the bike with the front wheel on the pavement and the rear wheel on the down slope of the driveway of the station. Yep, as you are all now figuring out, I now had a more pronounced space between my feet and the ground to keep the bike upright and level. Well this would have been fine if I didn’t notice I forgot to reset my trip meter, which is how I gauge my distance to empty. So while waiting I took my hands off the bars to first remove my glove so I could press the reset button. Well I failed to tell my wife not to move at all, when she of course then realized she was not comfy enough in the seat and decided to shift a bit to get more comfortable. Under normal circumstances, not a problem, but not that day! With no hands on the bars and the added height between the ground and my feet we started to tip over and I just could not recover fast enough. And my wife being the good passenger that she is kept her feet firmly planted on her floor boards….so down we went. And just to add insult to embarrassment as the light changed there were two other bikers stopping at the cross light who watched the whole thing… Arrgh! Thankfully there were no major damage or injury other than a bruised leg for my wife, and ego for me and a small scuff mark on my mirror housing, but a great lesson was learned to never straddle the valley between the road and a driveway again!!!

  • Great topic. It humbles us all to admit what probably all riders will experience at one time or another. I have a Honda ST1300 that I dropped in my driveway because I was stopping, looked down instead of ahead and applied a little too much front break. For a fraction of a second, I thought I’d be able to muscle the bike upright, but quickly learned that when it reaches a certain angle, it is going down no matter what. Picking it up was no picnic either. My other bike, a Suzuki GS500 is much lighter and easier to lift when it starts to lean. However, I made the mistake of warming it up perpendicular to the slope of the driveway (facing downward) and it rolled off the kickstand and fell over. I tried to catch the bike and was rewarded with a sprained thumb, a nice scrape down the length of my shin and three days of tearing down and reassembling the carbs to fix a float needle loosened by the fall. Embarrassing? You bet. So it is gratifying to know that it happens to everyone.

  • Wow, so sorry Jack to hear of your injuries! Wow. I hope you are mending well and will soon be back riding.

    I’ve only been riding for 4 seasons now, but I learned you sure don’t have to go far on your bike to injure yourself. I miscalculated when I was making a turn from a complete stop. I ran into a curb and went down with my bike. I couldn’t have gone more than 4 feet, but i broke my collarbone and did over 1000 dollars damage to my Sportster. Another time, in trying to avoid a car coming out from behind a building, I ran into a telephone pole and broke my wrist in 2 place. Painful learning experiences but at least I learned from them: NEVER assume anything. If you don’t have X-ray vision and can’t see through that building to be sure some driver isn’t going to come out from behind it, don’t go! And if your skills are not good enough to perform a certain maneuver, do NOT do it! No one really cares that you can’t yet do a tight U-turn or whatever. They had to learn at one time too! Ride your OWN ride and stay safe.

    I have to learn to separate myself from my bike which is a whole other skill entirely!

  • When does a drop become a fall, a fall become a crash. here are two examples that happened to me. A few years ago I was leaving my friends race car shop and stopped at a minor junction on my 1300 Pan. It had just misted lightly and I gave her a tiny bit too much throttle in the slippery turn and down we went. I got clear but the bike kept spinning on the ground until I managed to kill it. It had balanced on the built in crash bung on the fairing and the rear wheel was touching the Tarmac. Why? because brilliant Honda had designed the exhausts not to touch the ground, saving me a lot on repairs. Thats why the funny shape. So no damage to the bike except a cheap plastic bung. I always say good design costs no more than bad design.

    Then 10 weeks ago I was exiting a slip road at 30 mph on my GS1200. The front wheel caught some pebbles and down we went. Only a few scratches and minor damage to the bike ( mirror, indicator). This time though I wasn’t so lucky. Two broken legs, ribs and shoulder. Why? Because of the low speed the bike didn’t get away from me and I got caught up in it! Hard to believe but there you go. I have a drag racing buddy that has come off at 180 mph and he’s in better shape than me! The only conclusion that I can draw is of course that if you re going down make sure you’re rippin it!
    Jack, Limerick, Ireland.

  • I just dropped my bike on Sunday was on loose gravel and my foot slipped and over the bike went the gravel unfourtatly scrached some of my bike but the bike still works great and no injuries

  • Dropped my first bike, a CB450 Honda multiple times.
    73 900 Z-1 several times.
    Dropped my 86 Voyager 12 twice
    Dropped my current 02 GL1800 twice. It is a B*$#H to pick up.
    There a multiple reasons why, sand or slick pavement, one side of surface lower than the other etc,etc.
    Seems like it always happens when there is an audience.

  • Many near tip overs. First was with a KZ-550, parked in a lot and side stand was over a leaf covered hole. Hole was large enough that I could not find the ground with my left foot either. Nuff sid.

  • I have dropped my bike(s) over the years. Presently I have a 1999 Herigage Softail. I have done it 2 different times while filling up with gas. It happens when I am fully packed and on a trip somewhere. I tend to lean the bike and try to squeeze as much fuel into the tank as possible. I have stopped doing that. I also dropped a bike while in a rain storm, lost my footing on a slick road sitting still. I really think this happens to almost everyone if they admit it. Its not something I am proud of and I can honestly say that in all cases I could have done something different to prevent it.

  • I dropped by Triumph T-100 while backing it into a parking spot. I had my foot flat on the ground and I slipped on some gravel. Now, I stay on the balls of my feet when backwalking my back into a parking spot.

  • About five years ago I would drop my GL1500 Goldwing regularly, usually at a standstill.’
    Told my doctor about it and he sent me for an MRI scan.
    The scan showed I had a nerve pinched in my lower spine and unknown to me had weakened my left leg. That explained why the bike invariably fell to the left. My wife stopped riding pillion with me (can”t blame her :-) ).

    A neurosurgeon operated on my back and freed the nerve. Did rehab. until I could safely ride a pushbike, then got back on the ‘wing. Thant was three years ago and (touch wood) I haven”t fell over since. My wife rides pillion with me again’
    Then about one year ago my world went foggy….bloody cataracts !!!!! Soooo…got new eyes and the difference is amazing.
    I”m now just 68 so I regard the last few years as a 200,000 km service….life is good. Just waiting for the next thing……..

  • Top heavy bikes are tougher and you can’t always tell by total weight. My old BMW G650gs was much more top heavy and went down much more easily than the 100 pounds heavier R1200r I now own. Any future bike choices I make will have “low center of gravity” at the top of the checklist.

  • I have been riding again for about 6 years, I have logged 130,000 miles on 2 different machines. Each of these bikes have been down multiple times. The current ride a Goldwing has been dropped at least 8 times. Several of these were in parking lots practicing slow speed maneuvers, drill team type riding and cone work. Anyone that has ever tried this knows you do not get good without a few drops. I dropped it another day twice in 2 minutes due to high winds ad parked on a bad slope (all in the name of changing a flat tire for a stranger). I say all this to say, there are 2 kinds of riders. Those that have gone down, or dropped their rigs and those that are going to drop their rigs.
    There’s a third type (those that lie about it) that we choose to disregard. A real rider will not only admit it but will use his learned knowledge to teach others.
    Thinking about it this wing has been down over a dozen times. No shame in that at all.
    See you out there
    Smokey

  • Christine: I have always heard Sporties are top heavy – I don’t know that for sure but I did sit on a Sporty once and the seat was way too wide, hard, and uncomfy for me. This particular Dyna is marketed as being made for women – sits lower and the bike is narrower.

    My 2009 950 V Star was very top heavy. I dropped it a number of times – if it got off balance very much at all, I could count on it. If the angle of the road was too low when parking, I had to have help to pick it up to ride.. With the Dyna I don’t need any help and the Harley is actually about 15 lbs heavier.T he Dyna is very well balanced.

    I actually went to buy a used Softail and it was all ready sold when I got there; the salesman (a friend) told me to give the Dyna a try and the rest is history. Let me know what you get !

  • Thanks for sharing ! Its so nice to know it can happen to anybody. I still count myself as a newbie even though I’m starting my 5th year of riding.

  • I own a 2009 FXSTC with all the ‘bells and whistles’ plus all the chrome I can possibly add on to it, not to mention the engine lights, ‘BadAss tailight etc, you get the picture. Anyway, last summer as I was pulling into the parking lot of one of the Harley dealerships here in Louisville, my only parking space option had a storm drain in it, the type with the grating holes in it. Well, as I was postioning my bike making sure I didn’t put the kickstand down in one of the grating holes, I TOTALLY FORGOT TO PUT THE KICKSTAND DOWN!
    Thinking that I had done so, and begining my dismount, I felt my bike slowly slipping down the inside of my left leg. Luckily, it wasn’t a hard crash, only a small scratch on the bottom of the primary cover but it was most embarrasing since it was in full view of the employees of the dealership, the customers and my friends. Fortunately, there was plenty of help available to right the bike. So, as I walked in the door I sheepishly laughed it off and said, “Hey, I’ve only been riding for a few days, give me a break!” Actually I’ve been riding for over 30 years. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

  • I am a big guy that after 16 years without a bike bought a big KLR Dual Sport… Dropped it 4 times the first hour I owned it. ALL IN MY BROTHERS DRIVE WAY! Gave him great stories and the bike a few scratches that it still has by the way almost 5 years later.

    Having a bike means one of three things, either you have dropped it and admit it, are going to drop it and admit it… or you just lie about dropping it trying to look cool.

  • Thanks Diane. I’ll look into one of those. I want to test ride some bigger bikes in a few weeks when I get back to New York State. I was thinking Softail Heritage…but I’ll try a Dyna too. I’m only 5’5″. Hope it’s not too much for me. My current bike is a Sportster 1200XL and I love it, but women keep telling me Softails are SO much easier to balance. And I also would like a more comfortable bike for longer trips.

  • Christine: I got a 2012 Dyna Switchback FLD. I’m a big fan of the classic motorcycle and I have the best with both worlds now: a bagger and a classic :)

  • I fell in a similar incident while riding in a small group. We were riding on a one lane road in a county park. The road ended at a river. The road was too narrow to make a U turn without going off the black top into a shallow ditch covered with leaves. It seemed to happen in slow motion. I ride a Burgman maxi-scooter. What was amazing there was not one scratch on the bike. One nice thing about the bike is you step through it when mounting or dismounting. If it was a 1100 pound motorcycle my leg would have been caught under the bike. Another interesting feature, the engine has an automatic shut if it feels you are going down.

  • It was a brisk chilly morning on the Cherohala Skyway about 10 miles east of Telico Plains heading toward the famed “Tail of the Dragon” at Deal’s Gap. This was my first time on the Cherohala and I was completely mesmerized by the spectacular views and the artist palet of color with the changing of the leaves into their magnificient fall foliage. I was pulling into an overlook and was so taken agasp by the scenery that the next thing I knew I and my motorcycle were abruptly lying on our right side on the pavement. Never saw this incident develope or happen, I was just there! In retrospect I failed to folow the most basic rule of always looking at where you are traveling. Evedently there had been a state maintenence truck in the overlook prior and had dumped a small amount of gravel in the parking area. The turn in was a slightly decreasing radius downward slope at about 5 M.P.H. and when the front tire hit the gravel, down I went. Very little damage to either myself or the bike however, a lasting memory and reminder to follow all the basic rules we learned in M.S.F. training. Always look at your path of travel ahead and allow yourself time to react to unforseen incidents.

  • I ride a Kawasaki Vulcan 800. I think it weighs about 550 lbs. I parked outside an insurance office and because of the area, I locked the steering. When I came back to it, I forgot to unlock the steering. The bike went left and I continued forward. It landed on my right foot and twisted my ankle, but no serious damage, just hurt for a little while. The bad news is the older I get the more likely I am to forget what I’m doing while I’m scratching an itch. The good news is, I can still pick up a 550 lb motorcycle while standing on one foot. :)

  • I ride A Goldwing GL1500 That weighs 900 + pounds When I was parking it In front of a crowd I got distracted Thought the kickstand was down Started getting off the bike And down she went Talk about embarrassment In front of all motorcyclist My pride was crushed I had asked for help to get a back up to the kickstand down Oh yes I still meet with a group

  • Debi. Something like this might work for you: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Motorcycle-Rear-Brake-Running-License-Plate-Turn-Signal-Tail-light-Yamaha-Suzuki-/261170637110?hash=item3ccefba936&item=261170637110&pt=Motorcycles_Parts_Accessories&vxp=mtr

    Alternatively, replace the stem on you turn lights with flexible rubber tubing. Not only will it flex, but you my be able to adjust the length so they are tucked in enough not to smash.

    Been there, done that …

    Best of luck.

  • After reading all these horror stories I must tell you one that didn’t happen. I ride a Burgman 650 Maxie scooter. It is classified as a motorcycle on the nameplate next to the VIN number.
    I ride with a HOG (Harley Owners Group) who accept me as an associate member.

    While parked with the group I noticed my Givi top box mounted on the rear was hitting a row of shrubs behind my bike. I started to move the bike forward a few inches so it wouldn’t hit the top box. When satisfied the bike would clear the shrubs I let the bike down and rest on the kickstand. I wasn’t sitting on the bike at the time but on the left side pushing the handle bars.
    The kickstand was only half way down by this time and the bike would have fallen if it wasn’t for the help of other riders near by.

    One nice thing about a step through motorcycle if it falls it wont fall on you.

  • I am a fairly new rider – 4 years now, and I was 59 when I very first rode a motorcycle. I fell so many times I was SICK of it – but always in parking lots or doing a u turn. My first bike was a Honda Rebel 250 cc. I remember getting into some large gravel in a parking lot and at that time I didn’t know “throttle down if in doubt” so I got my skinny little front tire caught in some gravel and down I went – in front of lots of other bikers :((

    My second bike was a Yamaha V Star 650 cc. I had some clutch problems with that bike but I just thought it was my lack of experience (when actually it needed adjustment) . If my bike was not completely warmed up, when I let the clutch out slowly and got started into my turn, the bike would kill. And of course I fell – that being in parking lots as well.

    My third bike was a Yamaha 950 cc. This was totally my lack of experience – I went on a 3-week cross country trip from Iowa to California and up the coast to Washington, and back to Iowa. I overloaded my bike and it was top heavy. When I went to turn out of a drive way, it tipped beyond the point of no return and I dropped it.

    I’m on my 4th now – a Harley – so far so good, but the balance on that is amazing and of course, I learned many valuable lessons BEFORE I got it. :)

  • wow you must of been the dumb ass who slowed to soon or the dope smoker up front if thats all you have to worry about …proves my point with your type on the road …thanks

  • To Roy:

    easyer – easier, pined – pinned, rose’s- roses, all ways – always, your self – yourself, oct – Oct., to – too, fense – fence, stoped – stopped, might of – might have. on coming – oncoming.

  • posted on this jan 3rd 2012 ..heres the up date ,i installed short ,close engine/case bars.. so if this ever happens again it will just roll and sit on the bar … ok not much in a big crash but in slow /stop lean over /step off the crash bars will protect the , levers ,foot pegs, handle bars ,.. ,and the side case’s will be safe …and easyer to get back upright .and just ride away.and no chance of getting a foot pined under the bike .. but for me as like past post .” never stop where you do not want to ” just because the fools in front want to smoke a joint .or smell the rose’s ….ride right on by to the route stop …ya i know its a what happened, can i help,be with everyone moment…but you all ways need to take care of your self FIRST ..then you can help if you can ….this past oct sanford fl. h.d. fallen bikers ride ..in a 80+ bike ride some one up front ran into the back of some one else when they slowed to fast then both off the road .into the barb wire fense .. people started to stop in the middle of the road and get off to help..not even pull over to the side … in my mirror i could see the rest of the 80+ bikes roaring down on us … so some of us worked our way through the parked bikes and off we went clear of the on coming pack …. everyone who stoped ran foward NONE.. not one went back to slow /wave arms to the on coming bikes .to slow them down .sure they wanted to help but never thought to get out of the road ..that might of caused more crashes .. we took care of us first .. and just because anyone has a $20,000 h.d. bagger that does not mean they know what to do ..just because the leaders stoped to get stoned does not mean they know what to do ..take care of your self …first…

  • Oh yea, I have been there alright. just parked the bike with the wife on the back and as she got off the bike it wanted to go with her. another time was at a gas station, we are at the pump with the wife on the back and as she got off the bike leaned too much and over it went. soooo from now on I place the kick stand down plant my two feet firmly on the ground and then she gets off.
    and by the way a special note to motorcycle intelligence, thanks for this website and all that you put into it, I’ve learned a lot from you.

    Phillybikes of Newark Ohio

  • I had such an experience once ! We were riding on the jungle & mountain terrains of Southern Indian mainland & at that point were coming down the steep Ooty (Outcamund) ghat section. It was the last day of a 10 days ride & the road was ‘fantastic’ to say the least. Twisty curvasious steep hair-pins requiring one to maintain maximum road concentration & then a pic post-card like scenery with cool breeze blowing was the situation when suddenly someone spotted a lone leopard on the opposite slopes basking in the morning sun. Off we went after side-standing the m’cycle to have a look. And then we were merrily clicking our cameras when the sound of a heavy scratch turned us to the heart-stopping view of a m’cycle sliding down the sloping road towards the gorge at the end. Apparently its side-stand had retracted somehow on the gradient !
    My friend who’s bike it was sprang like a leopard only to see it hit against a tree, then the boundary rock & then topple over. How that bike was retrieved from the forests below where no roads lead to apart from game tracks is another story but it was a valuable lesson for us never to unnecessarily stop on a mountain & definitely not on a gradient, even with the bike on gear !

  • Been there Done that .. Probably Will again .. Never done a lot of damage, maybe a clutch or brake lever , most times none .. 40+ YEARS RIDING HAPPENS TO THE BEST OF US ..

  • If you haven’t – you will, unless of course you ride a garage or trailer queen. Moments of inattention come more frequently as one ages, so the older you get and the more you ride the chance of laying it over increase. Only ones not worried are the trike riders. So put on crash bars and get ready for it and hope it is soft sand not asphalt. BTW, long pants, cycle boots and heavy gloves are the minimum wearing apparel for the obvious reasons in all weather.

  • Ah, most riders have either tipped over or are going to tip over. I never had much problem with this when I was young and rode dirt bikes as they were easy to pick up. When I retired and got a BMW 1200GS it was a different matter. I have tried to be extremely cautious with the bike and have done fine when moving but during the first number of years I tipped over numerous times. First I miscalculated the slope of the road at a stop sign. Next several times involved gravel and parking lots. The worst ever and most common was not learning to be extremely careful in shopping mall parking lots. I’ve had to pull in to check maps or other things any number of times and they seem relatively safe. At least three times I’ve almost been hit by young women in SUVs talking on cell phones–always so close and so fast that I had to lay the bike down. Also, once I pulled off the road int the Colorado mountains only to hit dust over a foot deep with a cliff ahead so no hope of pulling out by power. I’ve learned to take it with good grace, to be grateful for all those who have helped me and specially grateful to the one who taught me to back into picking it up rather than picking it up while facing the bike.

  • I had a non ridiing tip over a short while back that had bad results. After a day of maintenance and cleaning of my bike I proceded to take it down from my lift. ( a real lift )
    and back it out of the shop and put it in the garage for the evening. A friend was with me and we had also done some work on his bike in preparing to go on a 5ooo mile trip to the Northwest and Canada. On backing my Goldwing out of the shop I inadvertantly bumped my left rider peg into a ice chest on the floor at the entramce to my shop. I doing so the bike started to tip over and I knew that it was going to go over. This hasnt happened to me often but I have tipped it over in the past. I letting it go I went to move my right foot out of the way as the bike was falling in that direction. Well it seems that the chrome bag guard on the bike decided that in order to keep from getting scuffed it would use my boot covered foot between it and the cement floor to keep from being scratched. I heard a snap and knew istantly what had happened. I broke the metatarsel of that leads to the small toe. That was September 5th and this week I got off of my crutches. My buddies made the trip to Cananda in perfect weather and I missed out on the ride of the year. Did I do it on purpose ….no. Oh by the way I picked up the bike using my back into the seat and lifting on the handlebar and seat grab and drove home. Dont want to do that again 900 pounds of bike rolling over onto your foot is not fun motorcycling.
    I get to start riding again next week. Rain is in the forcast.

  • I’ve dropped mine several times. Mostly trying to turn around on single tracks through the woods. A few times I’ve tipped over on the side of the road when the engine stopped suddenly after a cold start and positioned with a long drop on one side.
    I am attempting to be more thoughtful in choosing a stopping point so I can get my feet down. (I ride an adventure type bike so a bit longer reach from the saddle)

  • Are there any turn signals that aren’t as far spaced so if my bike goes down it won’t damage them?

  • My problem is I get right back on if I dump my bike, but even with highway bars, the damage is always the tailights. I want to keep practicing but that’s putting me off.

  • I am 60 yrs old, ride a 2002 1800 Leadwing and weigh 160lb soaking wet with all my gear on. I have dropped mine 2 or 3 times. Loose gravel at an intersection, off camber at a stop, gravel lot with big hole and deep loose gravel. We all fall over from time to time, hopefully no one is looking.
    The secret is knowning how to pick up a 900lb FATGIRL with no help.

  • Dropped my 2004 VFR twice… in one day! I was attempting a tight u turn on a narrow country road and ran out of road, hit the brakes and dropped it. Not a single scratch, I was very lucky. A few hours later after having washed and inspected the bike for damage I slipped on my wet driveway and dropped it again! This time just a few scratches (barely noticable) on the lower fairing.

  • There are three kinds of riders. Those who admit to dropping their bike a few times on it’s side, those who don’t admit to it, and those who have never attempted tight quarters, low speed maneuvers on a heavy bike.

    I drive a tall adventure bike with a higher than average center of gravity and reach for my short legs to the ground. I have to say I have dropped this bike more frequently than any other bike I’ve owned. One thing I’ve learned is never come to a stop with the handle bars turned and the front brake on. The combination of the two forces the bike over and the high reach to the ground makes it a lot harder to recover from. I don’t know why they don’t, but all bikes should come with crash bars or some kind of built in protection from a drop.

  • I ride what is a big heavy twin cylinder little bike, a Honda Varadero 125 trail, unsold in the US, but very popular in France and in Europe. In over 50 years of riding and over 500,000 miles I’ve probably tipped over a half dozen times, but never since I started wearing high quality high topped all leather motorcycle boots a dozen years ago. They are like having a steel shaft that runs down your leg and ankle and into your foot, yet are very comfortable to ride and even walk in. I wear Sidi On Road boots made in Italy, the same company that makes Aerostich Combat Touring Boots.

  • My very first road bike. BMW 2009 R1200RT at my first ride with about 100 other riders at a Windsor down town event. we came back from a Ride for Dad and stopped in the parking lot to park for the days events. I was so happy with the day, after I backed up and Thought I put out the kickstand and just got off! Wow what a lesson… All ways put out kickstand befor turning off key. On my bike this will make sure the stand is OUT! then the motor will shut down And not look like fool.

  • I bought a 2003 VFR 800 a couple years ago. The bike was in perfect, like new condition with 2,800 miles. One day I pulled into the garage and put the kickstand down walked away and heard it fall over into my car hoist. Sad faced I went to stand it back up and it wouldn’t. One of the kickstand bolts had vibrated out and lost somewhere on the road so I used the center stand til it was fixed. Just last week (memorial weekend) I road down to Denver from minneapolis to visit my sister. Decided to ship it back and fly home due to weather conditions and my need to get home to work. Beltmann Group or North American van lines shipped it to minneapolis and I picked it up on Tuesday. They had me inspect the bike and sign the paperwork b4 unloading off the pallet. The guy told me to hop on the bike to push me off. This was a 270 lb. 6ft something guy who pushed and let go while the bike stopped before it left the pallet. He let go and I was 10 inches off the ground and no boards on the pallet to stand on so my bike tipped to the right and leg fell through the pallet hole and tipped over and landed on me. Fractured my right wrist and bruised my right leg and of course my ego. Right side of bike is creamed and now the engine knocks on cold starts. Its sad. My insurance co. says to file with the van lines and if they don’t cover then my insurance will step in. Bummer huh?

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