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How to Ride Safely When It’s Windy

How to Ride Safely When It’s Windy

Oct 6, 2021

Motorcycle riding can be fun and thrilling any day. But the wind can make it more difficult than anticipated. If you're new to riding a motorcycle or have only ridden in light winds, the first time riding a motorcycle in strong winds can make you quickly realize how it can affect your riding experience. When the wind is strong enough, it will push your bike around and make riding difficult.

This blog post will teach you how to ride safely in the wind to avoid any incidents while enjoying yourself.

Riding in Crosswind: Wind Blowing Across Your Direction of Travel

Crosswinds can make riding a motorcycle more difficult and even unstable. To ride safely in a crosswind, you should:

  • Lean into the wind and not fight it
  • Use your arms, throttle, and clutch in coordination with leaning so that you will maintain a straight line without drifting off course
  • Loosen your upper body and relax your grip while still maintaining a good hold of your handlebars to allow your front tire to move back and forth as necessary
  • When riding a motorcycle in crosswinds, you'll need to constantly adjust your speed in order to maintain a straight line
  • If you have a windshield, you will have more stability because you can lean your body against the wind
  • Ensure you have eyeglasses to protect yourself from debris and to help keep you oriented

Whether you encounter a left or right crosswind, the technique will be the same — don't panic and be calm when manipulating your handlebars while riding your motorcycle in the wind. You don't want to risk getting blown over or off course with gusts of winds.

Riding in Headwind: Wind Blowing Towards You

Riding your motorcycle in headwinds can be tricky. Winds blowing directly in front of your motorcycle and against your direction of travel can make riding difficult. A strong headwind can also affect a motorcycle’s stability and handling, which is why it is important to be aware of the wind direction before taking off on your ride. There are a few things you can do to make riding in these conditions more comfortable and safer:

  • Keep an eye on signs and landmarks in front of you while heading into the wind so that when necessary, you are able to quickly take proper action
  • Try not to get too aggressive when accelerating in straight-aways or downshifting
  • Adjust your speed so that the wind is not blowing directly into your face
  • Keep on eye out for sudden gusts of wind when going around corners or over hills
  • Lean from side to side to help keep your bike steady
  • Slow down when entering intersections or underpasses so that you are able to maintain control of your motorcycle
  • Consider riding low behind your windshield and front fairing and tuck your arms and legs in closer to the motorcycle — this will ensure you're streamlined to reduce the friction of the wind against your body

Riding in Tailwind: Wind Blowing In Your Direction of Travel

Riding your motorcycle in tailwinds that blow from behind you can make riding easier and more relaxing. Tailwinds are a great way to help your motorcycle glide over rough roads, but they can also get you in trouble if the wind is strong enough. When that happens, it's important to slow down so as not to go off course or, worse yet, be blown into another vehicle on the road. To ensure you're safe when riding in tailwinds, there are a few things you can do:

  • Ride at a safe speed limit for your motorcycle. You might want to make sure you're not speeding just because the wind is pushing you along.
  • Make sure there's enough space between your bike and other vehicles around you in case of sudden winds or accidents. There should always be room for plenty of free space ahead, behind, and to the sides of you.
  • Stay in your lane as much as possible and only change lanes if absolutely necessary to avoid a crash or incident.

Other Considerations to Keep In Mind

rider cruising on a bike

Riding your motorcycle in the wind is not just about knowing how to react in different windy conditions. Being proactive about how you prepare your motorcycle for riding in the wind can help make sure that it's not just safe but enjoyable as well. If you're going to ride with a passenger, be sure they follow all the same steps of preparing their personal gear and are wearing protective clothing before getting on board. Keep these tips in mind too:

  • Check the weather before heading out for a road trip
  • Practice proper lane position and have wobble room
  • Practice push steering to hold your path of travel
  • Avoid riding your motorcycle in the wind or any weather conditions when you're tired
  • Don't carry too much luggage on your bike for long rides
  • Secure loose items that may become dangerous in the wind
  • Always check your mirror adjustments on the go as the wind can move your mirrors

Get Your Safety Gear at West End Motorsports

When riding a motorcycle in the wind, it's important to have the right safety gear and be prepared for any unexpected weather conditions. West End Motorsports has all of your motorcycle needs covered, from riding apparel and boots to gloves and goggles. If you're not sure what you need or are looking for other custom aftermarket parts and accessories for your bike, get in touch with us.

Order your safety gear and enjoy free shipping on orders over $99.