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How do I brake safely on a motorcycle?

There is no doubt about it: Motorcycles are dangerous. They're even more dangerous when inexperienced, untrained and unknowledgeable novices are riding them. For this reason, motorcyclists should make every effort possible to keep learning the best safety techniques available. In this vein, let's talk about motorcycle braking and how to do it safely and effectively.

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When it comes to motorcycle braking, it's all about balance. You need to adjust your use of front and back brakes in order to maintain proper balance when driving your bike. For this reason, your bike is equipped with individual rear and front controls.

As for the distribution between front and rear brakes, experts usually agree that you should apply 70 percent of the brake pressure to the front and 30 percent to the back. As you are likely aware, the front brake is found on your bike's right handle, and the rear brake is found on the right foot pedal.

As you brake, more weight will shift to the front of your bike, and for this reason, the front brake needs more pressure to slow it down. However, cruisers and choppers tend to be heavier and automatically have more weight on the rear tire, so they may respond well to more rear braking action.

Aside from the above advice, the best way to get very good at braking in different circumstances is to go to a track and practice. When you can practice braking as fast as possible in a controlled environment, you will learn the limitations of your bike and develop good braking instincts that will kick into gear when you need them most. Remember that although you can pursue a personal injury claim if a negligent driver causes you to get hurt on the road, it's clearly preferable to use good braking technique to avoid suffering an injury in the first place.

Source: ThoughtCo., "How to Use Motorcycle Front Brakes," Basem Wasef, Aug. 18, 2017

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