How a Motorcycle Safety Course Can Help Keep You Safe

Two motorcycles parked on road

A motorcycle safety course can teach new riders valuable skills and enable experienced motorcyclists to refine their skills to help keep them safe on the road. Additionally, an approved safety course can lower a biker’s insurance rates and fulfill the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) test requirements to obtain an M class license.

Specialized Training

Common passenger vehicles, construction equipment, semi-trucks, and trailers all have their own challenges to overcome and safety hazards to be made aware of, but motorcycles are in a class all their own. Specialized training is necessary to handle various riding situations on the road and be able to perform emergency maneuvers should the need arise. Additional safety training, such as a defensive driving course, for example, can help riders recognize and avoid oncoming dangers like distracted drivers. Here are a few other reasons why a safety course could benefit riders.

Meeting License Requirements

In Nevada, completion of a motorcycle safety course isn’t required to obtain an M class license. Doing so, however, can help riders bypass DMV testing.

Riders who successfully complete an approved motorcycle safety course in Nevada will receive a certificate that can be presented to the DMV. The certificate enables new riders to become licensed without taking the written or driving tests the DMV would otherwise require.

Motorcyclists who do not complete an approved motorcycle safety course are required to take a written test at their local DMV office to obtain an instructional permit. They would then need to pass a DMV motorcycle driving test to obtain their license.

Experienced Riders Can Polish Their Skills

Just as new drivers benefit from taking safety courses, so too can experienced bikers. It is not uncommon for experienced motorcyclists to take training courses to brush up on their skills. Intermediate rider safety courses can teach seasoned or even advanced riders new techniques, correct poor riding habits, and enhance awareness to reduce the risk of a motorcycle accident.

Experience with Different Makes & Models

With testing done on a variety of bikes in a safe riding environment, riders can learn more about the different manufacturers and brands of motorcycles. Additionally, there are no special accessories or upgrades present on a testing bike, as most bikes on retail do not have these features preinstalled. Special features and accessories can cause inexperienced riders to have problems adjusting when they have to switch bikes.

Practicing with new equipment gives people the means to explore their own strengths and vulnerabilities and test them, to find their own boundaries, and to discover what is ultimately safest for their personal skill and comfort level.

Understanding Bike Specs & Safety Gear

Novice riders should choose a motorcycle they can handle to avoid becoming a safety hazard to themselves and others. Height and weight differences make all the difference when riding a motorcycle. A motorcycle safety course can help riders understand the importance of bike size and design, safety features to look for, and how to choose the right safety gear. Things to consider include:

  • Weight of the bike: Riders should purchase bikes they feel comfortable handling. It is recommended that they try turning the motorcycle to ensure they can bear the weight.
  • Height of the motorcycle: Both of the rider’s feet should be able to rest firmly on the ground. Riders should be able to reach the handlebars comfortably while in the riding position.
  • Anti-lock braking system: Features like anti-lock braking systems (ABS) have been proven to reduce the risk of deadly motorcycle crashes by over 30%. These systems are very beneficial in slippery conditions, and since the brakes won’t lock up, riders retain the ability to steer in an emergency.
  • Helmets and safety gear: Wearing the proper clothing and helmet can help save riders’ lives if they are involved in crashes. In fact, helmets reduce the risk of suffering a severe head injury in a motorcycle accident by 69%, and the risk of death is reduced by 37%. Since head injuries are a leading cause of death in motorcycle crashes, safety course instructors often emphasize the importance of wearing a properly fitting, certified helmet. In addition to helmets, wearing proper eye protection, bright clothing, leather or other protective materials, and closed-toed shoes will likely be discussed.

Insurance Discounts

Motorcycle riders who successfully complete a motorcycle safety course in Nevada may be able to obtain a discount on their motorcycle insurance premiums. Since learning new riding skills and safety techniques reduces the risk of a crash, insurance companies may offer significant discounts.

In the United States, Nevada has some of the highest rates of injuries and fatalities caused by motorcycle accidents.