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Discussion Starter #1
hey guys,
i know this is gonna be kind of a tough question to answer since everyone is different..but i seem to be having some trouble as to how far to the end of a turn i should spot when im canyon riding and just in general riding. should i be looking at the very end of the turn or a little bit before that? i just feel that if i spot the very end i wont make the turn properly...but i may be wrong...any advise out there? TIA
 

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I don't think this question can be answered specifically. The general idea is to "look ahead"...don't focus on any one particular spot. Use your peripheral vision to navigate the current corner. Use caution, as this takes practice.
 

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Look for the "vanishing point". Meaning, look for the point at where the road is the smallest or disappears. Gauge your speed by how close or far the vanishing point is approaching. Don't focus on just the vanishing point but take the whole site picture into your mind. Don't rush it. Speed is relative and it takes time for your brain to process. So the more speed you expose your brain to the more it will slow things down. Take your time and build up to going fast.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
should i keep my eyes moving to a new "vanishing point" or just pick the one point and use that to gauge my speed..so in say a blind right hander, just keep focusing up ahead to the new road correct? and on a sweeping visable left just look as far as i can see or look at the end of the turn?
 

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Well the vanishing point will always be moving like you're watching a movie. So the farther away your vanishing point appears the faster you can go. The closer it appears the slower you go. If your vanishing point starts to move away from you then you start giving it gas and vice versa. Once you get used to seeing the road as a movie picture your brain will start to process the images faster and faster. That's when your speed comes from. What you don't want to do is be looking 20' in front of your front tire. Then the picture is moving so fast that you can't keep up. Bad things happen when you overrun your vanishing point.

As far as blind corners, look as far ahead as you can see until the object clears your site picture. Try to imagine the road on the other side of the object so you don't focus directly on it. That way when it does clear your site picture you can pick up the road ASAP.
 

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I think looking that far ahead on the street can be very dangerous though. Especially for learning. If your looking that far ahead you would have no idea if you're sweeping into the other lane. Or even starting to slide offroad.

You simply just don't go fast enough on the street to have to look that far ahead.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
yep thats the problem ive been having when spotting..i feel like im sweeping into the other lane sometimes
 

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+1 to NRR here. This is absolutely the technique you will be taught by any instructor or credible rider. And it absolutely can be put into practice on the street, you just have to be more aware of your surroundings. Even in a cage you should always be looking ahead of the turn or at the edge of the headlights. We just get conditioned by laziness to watch the road right in front of us. And as always, more practice. Even Rossi goes to practice.
 

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I Am a Ticket Magnet
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im with nrr and ima on this. never been to the tack but have taken a msf course and the instructor preached the same thing. you look far ahead to be prepared and pic you lines. drifting from your lane is simply poor management of your perifrial (misspell) vision and not picking the correct line for your the speed you should be going to stay in your lane. you are more then likely traveling too fast. on the street you are supposed to look ahead while checking road conditions with out concentrating you focus to much in that area (being road conditions). it shouldn't take you but a second to check the conditions of the road. the reason most people wreck is because they are not looking far enough ahead. whether it be cars or bikes
 

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Discussion Starter #11
NRR, tried the vanishing point this past weekend in the canyons...i immidiately felt faster...and felt in way more control of the bike..had a near spill in a sweeping right (hit some gravel in the road that was hard to see since it was within a wooded area, so the shaded and non shaded parts made it difficult to see all hazards)...but all in all it was very helpful...cant wait to go up again this weekend and see if i progress some more
 

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Glad it's working out for you. But now you know why I ride at 50-75% on the streets. Just take your time and don't get too crazy while you're riding the canyons. Wait for your next track day to really push hard. Like I said, your brain will take time to get up to speed.
 

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Hmmm...I read this thread last week, and your near-spill makes me wish I had replied earlier.

The question I was going to pose is, is it possible to look *too* far ahead?

Granted, most people tend to NOT look far enough, fixating on what is directly in front of their front tire. Heck, I catch myself doing it on occasion. But once you've overcome those mental barriers for the most part, and you are habitually scanning further down your sight path, does it reach a point where you are not paying sufficient attention to potential imminent hazards, things that are well within your ability to react to NOW?

eRRoc, you bring up a great example for discussion. Gravel (or damp spots, or dirt, ot tar snakes, take your pck) in a wooded, shaded area is a common occurence, we've all come across them. Typically, it's hard to visually identify these hazards until we are within, say, 75-100 feet of them. In such a scenario, when we are aware the potential for such hidden hazards exists, does concentrating your vision on a vanishing point 200-300 feet down the road really serve our interests? (These numbers are purely for illustrative purposes, by the way, and of course they would change per situation.)

Discuss.
 

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again i am no expert but i do believe it serves our interests well. again as nrr mentioned. focusing on the vanishing point is simply a way to tell if you are approaching a turn too fast or too slow. it is simply put that you go where you look
 

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I think it all comes down to how you use your peripheral vision and not focus on any one thing too long. You have to work on seeing the big picture as opposed to focusing on one object.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
yeah i think the main thing is figuring out how to utilize the "big picture" as NRR says...preparing your brain from whats about to come so you can be ready to react..although i do agree with what your saying about immidiate hazards..i tend to catch myself scanning down then taking a quick pop to see whats coming up right in front of me...it really only is a problem when things are harder to visualize at such a great distance (such as in wooded areas like mentioned above)

i think scanning ahead definitly helps though, makes you focus more because i found myself always getting a bit scared when i would see a car coming around the other direction in the twisties and lose focus in the turn...after trying the vanishing point method i found that i am concentrating on the turn itself more, making for a much safer as well as faster pass when i see oncoming cars...

and yes NRR, i completly understand what you mean about not pushing it too hard for the street...i definitly know what the 'too fast' limit is up there now...once i get some full leathers its on to the track, where i know i dont have any road hazards or cars to worry about...
 

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this is a late addition but i personally also have problems when other riders are in front of me....i tend to adopt the "follow their line" mentality and just go with what they're doing which i know is completely incorrect but it's hard to not look at the back end of a bike instead of the road.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
yes i have had that problem too...the only way around it is just to mentally block them out...last week i was doing that on the way up the canyons...on the way down i just focused on the road and boo ya...loads faster
 

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blue_rrockit said:
this is a late addition but i personally also have problems when other riders are in front of me....i tend to adopt the "follow their line" mentality and just go with what they're doing which i know is completely incorrect but it's hard to not look at the back end of a bike instead of the road.
That's why I ride alone - plus, I'm a jerk.
 
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