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Wes- I hope you got what you needed from this thread and that it would be okay for me to leverage it to ask for help for my personal SR - at least the one I want to work on 1st (smile)...er this time around.

I have a tendency to grip the left bar too tight. No idea why, nor can I see an apparent pattern of when I do it most often. When I notice I’m gripping hard it is when I tell myself to relax because my hand is already tired.

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3 hours ago, Jaybird180 said:

Wes- I hope you got what you needed from this thread and that it would be okay for me to leverage it to ask for help for my personal SR - at least the one I want to work on 1st (smile).

I have a tendency to grip the left bar too tight. No idea why, nor can I see an apparent pattern of when I do it most often. When I notice I’m gripping hard it is when I tell myself to relax because my hand is already tired.

A few thoughts come to mind:

1) check your RIGHT hand - do you inadvertently push on the right side bar when rolling on the gas, and therefore have to push ALSO with the left to prevent the bars from turning?

2) Check the fit of your gloves, are they tight or restrictive?

3) Check your left-side body position (lower body particularly) to see if you are somehow forced into some tension in your left hand (feeling like you are slipping off, or having to hold yourself on), and check to see if you are twisting your body to one side - have someone look at you from behind to look for twisting or tension.

4) Per your other thread, are you tense in general on left hand turns, mentally worried about something?

5) Is there a lot of vibration in the bars? That can cause some mild numbing which can cause you to grip tighter which can lead to the sort of fatigue you mention. Some smaller bikes can transmit a LOT of buzzing in the bars, especially if the bars are lightweight and the grips are thin. The effect could be more prominent on the left hand because you are not moving it or repositioning it as often as the throttle hand.

 

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On ‎8‎/‎10‎/‎2019 at 12:50 PM, faffi said:

That sounds right to me. As long as we are under control - and what we can control can be practiced and learned and expanded - we can act in a calculated way. But once you are out of control, you will revert to your personal SRs. With practice, and also personal abilities will help here, there is a grey zone where you are out of control, but still able to fight the SRs and act in a manner practiced. This could be looking into/around a corner despite the feeling of having entered too fast. However, if you enter way too fast, I reckon SRs will strike. For some, SRs will strike early and hard, others can be cooler customers. Still, at one stage I reckon panic will take over for everyone.

We can see this every now and then on TV even with the very best MotoGP racers, where they appear target fixate and go straight (off the road) when entering a corner too fast, even though it appears that the speed did get low enough to turn before they left the asphalt and hit the gravel. Then you have MM, who doesn't seem to have SRs at all 😁

I think so, too - if you go WAY past your limits and feel out of control I think the SRs are going to kick in hard. Keep in mind also that mental and physical state contribute to this, too - if a person is tired, dehydrated, lacking in sleep, hasn't eaten enough, etc. it affects mental focus and can definitely cause SRs to kick in earlier/harder and give the person less ability to combat them. Definitely something to keep in mind while riding, especially on very hot days or long rides.

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1 hour ago, Hotfoot said:

A few thoughts come to mind:

1) check your RIGHT hand - do you inadvertently push on the right side bar when rolling on the gas, and therefore have to push ALSO with the left to prevent the bars from turning?

2) Check the fit of your gloves, are they tight or restrictive?

3) Check your left-side body position (lower body particularly) to see if you are somehow forced into some tension in your left hand (feeling like you are slipping off, or having to hold yourself on), and check to see if you are twisting your body to one side - have someone look at you from behind to look for twisting or tension.

4) Per your other thread, are you tense in general on left hand turns, mentally worried about something?

5) Is there a lot of vibration in the bars? That can cause some mild numbing which can cause you to grip tighter which can lead to the sort of fatigue you mention. Some smaller bikes can transmit a LOT of buzzing in the bars, especially if the bars are lightweight and the grips are thin. The effect could be more prominent on the left hand because you are not moving it or repositioning it as often as the throttle hand.

 

1- I know that I used to do that. I don’t think I do that anymore.

2- My gloves are a good fit but I do like to fasten them snugly.

3- I’ll see if I can get someone to photograph me next time out.

4- Yes. I tend to crash on the left. This track is also left turn dominant.

5- I’ll pay more attention but it is a single cylinder. It’s pretty smooth but not as much as an I-4. The grips are new. I do tend to run lower gears getting more RPMs. I am working on figuring out my shift points but the track is so busy I’d be shifting too much but I do believe I can find good time by working that out.

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One issue we have seen with a rider preferring one side over the other, is on the "bad" side, they are doing something different.  If only doing it on the one side, and the bike is sound other wise, start looking at what they are doing differently on that side...a skilled coach helps here, as it can be 1/2 inch difference on body position can be the difference.

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I consulted with Dave Moss and he indicated that tires were nice and hot and pressure was good and it appears the rear moved around. He asked about suspension travel but I have no data on that, except the rearward geometry due to being undersprung (shame on me- I should have gotten a custom spring).

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On 6/15/2019 at 8:01 AM, PittsDriver said:

 

A question for the rider coaches on here - do you still catch yourself getting target fixed on those rare times when you've blown a corner or something surprises you out on the street?  If not, what was it that you feel contributed most nulling out that survival reaction?

Thoughts?

Wes,

Steve here - I noticed that no MSF (non-CSS) coaches answered up here.  You wrote also that this might be a topic for MSF so I'm going to offer my $0.02  

I realize I'm resurrecting a thread, and I'm admittedly new to the sportbike game, 2 months and 2500 miles on a K1200S.  What got me there is that I'm signed up for CSS in May so I have been reading these forums in earnest.  However, I have been an MSF coach for over 13 years with over half a million miles on several bikes.

Whenever I am approaching a new corner, at speed or otherwise, I still tell myself "Slow, Look, Press, Roll."  The newer conceptual verbiage is "Search, Setup, Smooth."  At speed I tend to think it faster then our students on the range do.  Or at least I'm hoping I do.  One thing I ensure to tell the students is something you've all heard before, and I'm pretty sure I read it in this thread and that is "look where you want the bike to go."  Okay, we all got that, but the timing is the important part.  So what I tell the students is to "look where you want to go, and THEN make the bike go there."  I find that the natural delay between the look and the steering input (at the novice level) sets them up for success down the road.    

The caveat here is that "the bike does NOT necessarily go where you look." It doesn't have to. Look ahead before arriving at your turn point. 

Once the rider is mentally assured about actually getting to the turn point, then he is to look to the apex, pause to arrive at the TP and begin the steering input.  But the key (as HotFoot mentioned) is looking to the apex sooner to alleviate the speed sensation, and using 'wide-angle' viewing to monitor the turn point arrival then perform steering.  Get the nose pointed in the correct direction and finish the smooth roll on.

I hope this helps.

Cheers!

Edit: I am also a pilot, USMC helos for 21 years.  I concur with your analogies to "Emergency Procedures", muscle memory, and effective SR avoidance through practice and simulation.

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Thanks 53Driver.  All those things you posted are great advice for how to properly set up and execute a corner in a way that keeps you mentally ahead (slows down the action) and having proper vision and a LOOK - GO mantra.  If you train and engrain those habits I'm absolutely convinced you'll be a safer and better prepared rider.  

However, none of that addresses an antidote for your survival reaction of target fixating when you do find yourself in a completely unexpected situation.  Doing all that proper stuff you covered helps reduce those incidents but sooner or later everyone finds themselves with a car suddenly crossing the center line at us or some stuff in the road that runs you wide toward the ditch.  In that case we can get target fixated and don't use the margin and maneuverability we have available to avoid the "target."  

If you go back and read my initial post in this thread, I make the assertion that in order to be able to eliminate target fixation we have to have to be able to 1. instantly recognize/acknowlege in that moment that what's happening isn't what I expected; and 2) have a response that has been practiced enough to be in my reptilian brain.  I gave the example of how we do this in aerobatic upset/recovery training in aircraft.  

I was hoping that bringing this up on here some minds much more experienced and instruction oriented then me would give it some thought and figure out a way to train out that target fixation instinctual reaction.  

Thanks for your contribution but it's my hope that there's a solution out there other than be skillful enough to have it never happen.  I have to believe that target fixation puts a very large number of motorcyclists in the hurt locker.

 

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Wes,

...roger.  Copy all.  I lost your OP meaning while reading the thread.  

"...everyone finds themselves with a car suddenly crossing the center line at us or some stuff in the road that runs you wide toward the ditch.  In that case we can get target fixated and don't use the margin and maneuverability we have available to avoid the "target." 

"1. instantly recognize/acknowledge in that moment that what's happening isn't what I expected; and 2) have a response that has been practiced enough to be in my...brain." 

"...a way to train out that target fixation instinctual reaction.... I have to believe that target fixation puts a very large number of motorcyclists in the hurt locker.  "

I agree with all of your points.  This jives well with what I read in either TOTW2 or the SSofR where Keith wrote (paraphrased) that it's tough to eliminate the 6000+ year old instinct to keep eyes on what is threatening you.     

In my other hobbies, martial arts & shooting, we must watch our opponent. 

My personal emergency procedure - which I do NOT teach students - is "Sh*t/SWERVE."  As soon as my brain registers "oh golly gee, this is not going per my expectations" i.e. "Sh*t!", my trained reaction is "Swerve."  I'm hoping in the instant of need, thinking Swerve will eliminate eyes fixating and hopefully have them looking to escape paths.  

So to the audience, anyone else have a technique?  

Cheers, 

Steve

   
 

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I can't remember if I've posted this hear before - probably not.  I have front/rear video running on my Super Duke and got this video last year when out in the hills of Virginia.  A buddy was following me when this knucklehead came at me near the centerline.  He then proceeded to get target fixated on my buddy and ended up passing him ON THE RIGHT!  My apologies for the quality of the video which is about as good as the Zapruder film but you can get the idea of how dangerous it can be to target fixate.  This guy had plenty of margin left to get leaned over and make the turn if he would have just looked where he wanted to go and make the bike do it.  This was very nearly a bad day.

 

 

 

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Dang!  I've heard of that happening, but have never seen it!

Your buddy was in the real catch-22.  Not knowing what that clown was thinking, what to do?  Swerve outside? Swerve inside? Slow/stop?  All while using "wide vision" and NOT fixate on this threat.  Good on him.  

I'm glad it all worked out.  Did the guy keep going or did y'all stop for a 'chat'?  If so, did he say what he was fixated upon?  

 

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@PittsDriver

I'm not an instructor or coach so you can take whatever I say with a grain of salt. In regards to addressing number 1, I think what's helped me is to not underestimate how dangerous target fixation can be, in fact i think I over estimate it if that's possible. I've made it a priority in the list of things in concerned about when I ride so when something sketchy happens, it's the first thing that crosses my mind. I've learned that it helps, helps me at least, to keep reminding myself not to fixate. I ride in new York city and long island, and those of you who have ridden here can attest to this, it's a madhouse. I have been able to use it as a means of training myself I guess. I have lost count of how many times I've seen a driver do something irresponsible, or an accident, or just a close call. The initial reaction is to look at it, but as soon as i see it happen I tell myself "don't fixate, don't fixate, look for a COA, don't fixate". It's surprising to me how fast I can recite that in my head. I have gotten to the point now that i only say it once and I'm off that "target" and looking for an exit strategy but it took some practice to train my mind i guess. It's not a 100% fool proof plan to cure target fixation but for me, it's a way to get me off of it and it has helped quite a few times. Most recently last season at NJMP, turn 9, coming too hot for my comfort level. Im sure the bike could've made the turn but mentally I wasn't ready, came in wide, saw nothing but run off grass, told myself "don't fixate look in to the corner where you want to go" and I was able to stay on the track. Muscle memory for my mind?

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SRod321, I like it that you seem to have had enough survival reaction experience (or more to the point, constant reenforcement :) ) that you seem to have a proper reaction spring loaded in your reptilian brain.  Wouldn't it be great if there were some training opportunities to get more riders where you are without the risk on the street.  

I can't remember if I mentioned this in my OP but the slide bike option at CSS was a great way to work on my SR from locking up the front or just panic braking.  That's a great laboratory for demonstrating how I do exactly what I don't want to do in that situation - get a death grip on the bars.  I had to do that drill several times before I could be light enough on the bars during threshold braking to become the human ABS I needed to be.  I felt like I got pretty good at it after several attempts but I'm sure that's also a perishable skill.  If someone pulled out in front of me suddenly on the street would I be locked on with my lower body and light on the bars?

Maybe a lot of experience and focused attention on this problem is the only answer.  Just asking the question on here it's interesting how it's come up that some track junkies just stop riding on the street altogether.  On the track you should be able to not be often surprised by charging a corner, et. al. by focusing on all that preventative stuff posted here.  Sure it's going to happen but not like it would on riding a few 10's of thousands of street miles per year.  For that, the best advice seems to be to stop riding when you're tired or not well hydrated or not mentally all in the game and have the restraint and judgement to ride The Pace where you're less likely to catch yourself charging a corner.

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I wouldn't call myself a junkie but I do get most of my riding now on the mini-moto tracks. As a result of that and the craziness, my desire to street-ride is lowered quite a bit. Once in awhile I get the bug to commute but that's about it. I do miss the social aspects but all of my friends from a bygone era have moved on to either sell their bikes or ...(gulp) they all ride Harleys.

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On 3/6/2020 at 5:14 PM, SRod321 said:

@PittsDriver

 I tell myself "don't fixate, don't fixate, look for a COA, don't fixate". 

The brain is not typically wired to be bothered with words like "don't" and for most will only react to "fixate". If your kid has ice cream running down the chin and you tell the kid "do not look down", the child will definitely look down. If you instead say "look up", you can wipe the chin before the kid ruin the shirt. 

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11 hours ago, faffi said:

The brain is not typically wired to be bothered with words like "don't" and for most will only react to "fixate". If your kid has ice cream running down the chin and you tell the kid "do not look down", the child will definitely look down. If you instead say "look up", you can wipe the chin before the kid ruin the shirt. 

Good point.  That's why I think Hotfoot's advice about her trigger/response seems like the best in this thread.  Whenever I catch myself being compelled to brake for something (like a corner) harder than I anticipated, use that as the trigger for a LOOK, GO reaction.  

I think the main point of my question is to discuss how to make a good response like this something I can do without thinking about it.  When that "oh @#$%" moment happens, your thinking isn't going to suddenly catch up and get ahead of the action - just the opposite.  In aerobatics we call that brain freeze.  Hence my point about this reaction needing to be something you've programmed in your reptilian brain.  But how?  One technique pilots use in training is chair flying where I'll sit and close my eyes in the comfort of my favorite chair at home and mentally go over and over some maneuver.  I wonder if that would work here to spend time imagining finding yourself charging deep into a corner and triggering the LOOK, GO reaction?

For the really skilled riders here like the CSS coaches, is that a technique you've ever used to learn something new?  I could see it especially useful to "ride" a track mentally taking yourself through every reference point around the circuit and I'm sure that's something that you do.  I'm thinking it might also be a useful homework assignment for students to do that for skills they're trying to learn as well.  Thoughts?

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In order to train a correction using chair riding you’d need to make the mental error just as real. Is that what you want to implant?

I will continue to work the question to help find the right answer, but I don’t know for now.

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Hmmm, I would think that I can visualize being in the situation where I need to activate my anti-fixate antidote without engraining the judgement error that got me there :)

You would know better than most the value of chair flying!

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