New Rider Experience – I: Into the Classroom to Fulfil a Dream

What is it like to be a new rider? Exhilarating, fun, scary humbling and spiritual. I recently went through the Motorcycle Skills Assessment (MSA) Course at Pacific Riding School. I can say it is worth every penny. I don’t know if I would have ever had the confidence to ride if I had not taken their program.

PRS is owned by Mark Kruger, seven time Supersport Champion, and Dat Louie an avid rider and holder of a BA in Education from McGill university. The staff is highly qualified with years of training and racing or track experience behind them as well. It’s clear they have a passion for what they do, each and every one.

I did not know what to expect when I started the class. I mean, I read the overview and understood the words, but sitting on this machine that has the power to make you so feel free, yet is so edged with danger is a totally different thing.

The program is broken into three components: classroom, lot and road.

I am not a classroom person. I have a hard time sitting still and was dreading learning from this perspective. I was pleasantly surprised that the information covered and the delivery was really interesting.

Safety is huge when learning to ride, which is why I recommend anyone who is a new to the sport, more colloquially a “newbie”, look into a course. On that note I have to say I was taken aback by how many accidents we were shown to us and what the potential dangers are for a rider. I thought it would be bad for business; instead it arms you with the knowledge and determination to pay attention constantly, which of course is a good thing.

Your gear, attitude, weather conditions, motorcycle operation and physics, maintenance and potential risks all play a part in safety. I am grateful to have been taught about all of these and as a result have made different choices around these aspects of motorcycling than I intended to before attending Pacific Riding School.

From a new rider perspective the classroom sessions were interesting and enlightening, rather than a tedious drag, so I’m glad I went this route.

Read on in part two next week when PRS unleashes me in the big, bad… parking lot.

One Comment Add yours

  1. Mollygrubber says:

    I just completed this course a couple of months ago. I took it with my wife, who is a ‘n00b’ too, for moral support. It turned out I (with 25 years riding experience) learned a thing or two – or ten.

    My wife really hard a hard time, and Dat and Chris gave her all the one-on-one time she needed to feel safe.

    Great bunch of guys, very committed to their work, and I couldn’t believe they could teach students with zero riding time enough to ride through Vancouver safely in three sessions in the parking lot. Wow, that sentence is messed up! I’ll leave it in regardless…


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