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Hello all,
Well, all of those times I read that one is likely to dump the bike somewhere along the line - they were right. :(
I came upon a left curve, got fixated on a pole along the side of the road, braked too hard, hit some gravel and landed hard on my right side. Twisted my right ankle, and the bike landed on the ankle - and I hit my head. My first thought was "Now I know why we wear helmets". My second thought was that I was glad it was the hospital road and not the regular road. I was also grateful that I was only going 10-15mph. I didn't black out and one of the guys coming out of the meeting helped me pick the scoot up. I got back on it and rode it home (5-7 minute ride) - by the time I got home I realized the ankle was worse than I thought and Bryna took me back to the hospital to the ER. I turns out it was a sprain. They gave me a stirrup brace and today I can walk without the crutches. I'm glad I'm taking the motorcyle safety course in a few weeks - I think I'll feel more confident after that.
Any suggestions on how to avoid "fixation syndrome"? I'd be grateful for any tips. :oops:
Hope everyone has a great week.
Tall Woman.[/i]
 

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Heh. Just don't concentrate. Hey, that was easy. Uh. No. Wait. :?
 

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Glad to hear you came out this with relatively minor injuries. Hoping you have a speedy recovery and don't get gun shy. Get back out riding as soon as possible. I hope you ask your instructors the fixation question as it would do your whole class a lot of good to hear what he/she has to say.I unfortunately cant find a way to express it in words right now.
 

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I sprained an ankle very badly last summer. I stepped in an a hidden animal hole up at the lake while I was running and went down hard. I got on my V-Strom and rode it directly home - within an hour I couldn't walk without a cane. It took about three weeks before I felt confident enough to try riding the motorcycle (I didn't have the Burgman yet).

I went to the hospital the next day for xrays. While I'm lying on the xray table, I look over on the wall, and there is a framed picture of a gopher (head shot) grinning at me. It was probably a gopher hole that I stepped in... I couldn't believe it!

I hope you heal quickly Tallwoman. I know it hurts like heck, but it will be good as new soon.
 

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The fixation problem as you put it is very real and the only way I know of to help avoid it is to remember to look were you want to go.
Sounds so simple but you will find it's not . Come around turn and see a car in your lane it's dam hard to look were you want to go and not at the car but the fact is the bike goes were you are looking.
two rules that may help till you take the course
1-look were you want the bike to go
2- look where your turning, turn where your looking
Dropping your bike is all part of learning to ride, the important thing is you learned a lesson and your alright :)

Hope that helps :)
 

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tallwoman said:
I came upon a left curve, got fixated on a pole along the side of the road, braked too hard, hit some gravel and landed hard on my right side...Any suggestions on how to avoid "fixation syndrome"? I'd be grateful for any tips.
I'm so sorry for your crash. Very glad you were not hurt worse. I sympathize with you, haven "taken a soil sample" myself.

To answer your question about target fixation: You really have to physically turn your head towards the presumed apex of the corner. Turning just your eyes is not enough. See if you can find some pictures of moto-racers, or watch them on the Speed Channel; it looks like they are almost straining to lead the bike through the turn with their heads.

This will help you avoid looking at objects on the outside of the curve. It will also move your body weight to the inside of the turn and press on the handle bar.
 

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You'll hear this a lot when you take the MSF course - "Look where you want the bike to go". You apparently did what seems comes naturally to all of us and stared at an object that you wanted to avoid and tended to steer towards it. I'm sure that most of us have done the same thing lots of times, especially when driving - concentrate for a few seconds at something along the side of the road and find our car drifting towards that edge of the road or hit a pothole that we wanted to avoid but concentrated on too long.
It will take some practice to learn to scan the road ahead and concentrate on selecting the safest path for your bike without staring at the hazards we want to avoid (like roadside poles). You want to look well ahead for potential hazards in your path of travel but concentrate on the path your tires will follow to avoid those hazards Your instructors will work with you in the classroom and on the range and, with a little practice, you'll be able to handle similar problems in the future. And, they'll teach you how to brake quickly while leaning the bike in a turn.
Glad you're OK and let us know how you and Bryna like the course. :D
 

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My first involuntary gravel collection occurred during one of my first rides on a small bike. I decided it was time to turn around and made a too-fast right turn on a left-side-of-the-road gravel driveway. Laid it down and proceeded to lick gravel. Yes I was wearing a full face helmet but as I was sliding feet-first and chin side down on gravel, the gravel just flew up inside my helmet. Came away with several sprains, alot of scrapes, few ounces of extra minerals in my skin, and a full appreciation for those who wear leather gloves (I didn't).

I have always had a problem with fixation steering, especially driving a vehicle. "ooohhh, look at that pretty cloud" causes me to drive in a not so straight line. I have had to learn to do quick looks. I am a firm believer in "look where you want to go" because I invariably go where I am looking and not where I wanting to go.

And I second the thoughts of the others, am thankful that you came out better than it could have been.
 

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captainfish said:
My first involuntary gravel collection occurred during one of my first rides on a small bike.
Gravel. Lots of it out here. Most of the roads that intersect those rural two lane highways that I like to ride are gravel. And as vehicles move onto the paved two lane from the gravel road, they drag some more gravel out onto the pavement. It is a constant hazard. I try to keep near the center line whenever there is an intersecting county road.

I also have to be careful of the fixation trap. I know about it, but like others, sometimes still fall for it. Stare at that squashed skunk lying in your path and you for sure are going to go right over it...
 

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Hey Everyone,

New member here but wanted to make a quick comment on this important topic. I've been taught to avoid "tunnel vision" from when I started driving cars by practicing to drive with a "radar effect" of sorts. At all times, scan the left to right in front of you, with an occasional check of the rearview mirrors. My driving instructor would play a somewhat annoying game where he would cover the rearview mirror and ask what color the car was behind me.

I started riding bicycles before scooters, and there you have even less protection against dogs, 50 ton SUVs, etc., and the radar method works great there. The other "game" I play is to try and always have an escape route planned, and in busy traffic, multiple escape routes. By this I mean if there is a giant SUV waiting to merge into traffic, I always assume he/she will do the stupidest thing possible, which usually means pulling out directly in front of me. I plan potential "escape routes:" switching lanes, manuvering behind and around the vehicle if they stop partway into the merge, etc. I also check the other lanes that might allow for escape to make sure there are no cars there. It sounds paranoid, but it's actually a mildly amusing mental exercise, and has saved my butt from being a hood ornament on a Ford Excerusahummerbattleship quite a few times.
 

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pgray007,

Welcome to the BurgmanUSA forum!

You are right. It is always wise to anticipate trouble before it happens, and have a contingency plan. If you have to figure out what to do after trouble develops, it's way too late...

Be sure to tell us a bit about yourself when you get a chance, like what you ride, where you ride, etc. The "Who are u? Where u from?" section is a great place to do that. Enjoy the forum.
 

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it's very real and not only with driving

First, glad you are OK - wishing you a full and speedy recovery!

Second, on the object fixation thing - it is very real and applies to more than just driving (although that's the subject here). I coached soccer at high levels for about 12 years - specializing in "finishing" which is actually getting the ball in the net once you've made it down to the other team's goal. Object fixation is one of the main enemies of finishing - players tend to be looking straight at the goalkeeper when they shoot the ball. Guess where the ball goes? Right! straight at the goalkeeper.

I've spoken with tennis coaches that tell me the same thing. So, it's a natural thing that must be overcome with practice and you have to keep practicing. I catch myself having the problem when mountain biking - stare at the tree, hit the tree. :oops:

Good luck and keep practicing your vision.

Al
 

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tallwoman said:
Any suggestions on how to avoid "fixation syndrome"? I'd be grateful for any tips. :oops:
Hope everyone has a great week.
Tall Woman.[/i]
It's not just being fixated that's he problem. Yes, you have to not only look in the turn direction, and yearn with your belly towards the direction you want the bike to go.

More important, when coming in HOT into a turn that you instanly judge to be too fast - keep off the front brake, and watch the rear brake so as not to lock in the turn. The front anchor will widen the tuen and stand the bike up - the rear wont do this, But you will swap ends if you lock it.

I had such a situation like yours, without the brain lock - came in too HOT on a gravely tight turn that took me by surprise. I went in , thought oh no Im going down - but I just looked in the direction of the turn, and used the rear brake judiciously. I came out alright upright. It might have also gone the other way if I even tapped the front brake.
 

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abm said:
It might have also gone the other way if I even tapped the front brake.
One reason I don't like the linked brakes on the 400.
 
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