Using your Motorcycle's Brakes

Using your Motorcycle's Brakes

­When a motorcycle experiences a rapid deceleration, weight shifts to the front wheel. This makes the back of the bike lighter and can result in the rear wheel locking up and skidding. In this situation, riders should simply keep the rear brake applied and focus their eyes on the horizon where they want the bike to go. The bike will continue to skid, but in a controllable manner with little fishtailing.

When the front wheel locks up, riders should ease off the front brake. If they don’t, the front wheel can tuck under the bike, causing a fall. The best way to avoid a front lockup is to use a technique called “staged braking.” In staged braking, the rider progresses through four stages, with each stage corresponding to a greater amount of pressure applied to the front brake:

  • Stage one has the rider applying the brake just to the point where there is the slightest friction between the brake pads and disc.
  • In stage-two braking, the rider progresses to stage one, then continues to apply a steadier force.
  • brake-parts


  • By stage three, which is usually reserved for emergencies that require rapid deceleration, the rider bears down on the brake as hard as possible, but only after progressing through the other stages.

This kind of progressive braking will serve motorcyclists in all driving situations and will usually prevent a front lockup.

For more information on motorcycles for safety driving, visit us here.

Image credit:calsci

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