It is usual for beginner riders to have doubts before buying their first motorcycle and a common question that most beginners have in their mind is, “Do I need to be physically strong to ride a motorcycle?”
The straight answer to the question is not necessarily. Today, there are many bikes that are available in the market which are suitable for riders of all shapes and sizes. On top of that many modifications can also be made to a motorcycle to make it more suitable for the rider’s specific needs and comfort level. Always remember that riding a motorcycle needs serious practice more than a strong physique. Learning rear brake applications are a must during a motorcycle safety course. Bike falls are common but if you know how to properly apply the motorcycle gear, front brake lever and rear brake then preventing bike falls are easier. There has to be a tune of the upper body strength and motorcycle gear for proper balance. A motorcycle license is essential to a touring bike, sports bike, light bike and all other types. Use the center stand to park the bike in a parking lot. Riders need to have knowledge about shifting gears, clutch lever, wheel discs, brake lever, throttle control and other motorcycle-related applications to ride securely.
The one and only thing that counts is whether you are able to balance a motorcycle all by yourself, mount it on your own, and have a strong balancing ability while you are riding your beloved bike.
Why You Do Not Need to be Physically Strong to Ride a Motorcycle?
Riders, especially beginners often have this common misconception that probably they do not possess the physical strength that is required to ride a motorcycle. The fact of the matter is, anyone with the right amount of practice can ride a motorcycle, provided they have chosen a model wisely and not in a haste.
There are some motorcycles in the market that are heavier than others, bulkier than others, and therefore, are better suitable for persons who have a certain level of physical strength. But that simply does not imply that all motorcycles need the riders to visit the gym at least four days a week.
Just like in the case of driving cars, all you need is practice and the right skillsets for riding a motorcycle.
Riding a Motorcycle is all about SKill and Not about Strength
It is critical to know that riding a motorcycle is all about skill and not strength. It is also worth noting down that you will develop skills with time, provided you are practicing enough. But the fact remains the same that it does not require super-human acts of being physically strong in order for one to ride a motorcycle.
Before buying your first bike, ask yourself some questions -“Is my body suitably fit for riding motorcycles without any help? Am I able to control my muscles well when riding my chosen model? Is it easier for me to balance on both feet instead of just one foot while I am standing in my house?” If your answer to these questions is yes, then there is no further need of worrying about if you are physically strong enough to ride a motorcycle or not.
You will need some strength in the beginning in order to maneuver your motorcycle, but with time, it will become more effortless to you than daunting.
A motorcycle with its built and machinery may appear overwhelming to beginners and it, of course, is a heavy vehicle but as I said, with more and more practice, you will slowly climb the ladder of confidence and if you are practicing diligently, in no time you will be able to master the skill and kickstart your much-awaited riding life.
With More Practice, you will automatically gain More Strength
The more you practice riding a motorcycle, the more your body and your muscles will get accustomed to it. You will no longer feel that you need the same level of strength to balance the bike or to maneuver it, which you needed on the very first day.
This is because your body will develop muscle memory of riding a motorcycle as it gets conditioned with time and you will notice this change on your own.
But remember that if your body is having trouble handling your bike even after a considerable amount of practice, it’s not that you are strong enough to ride a bike but only, that perhaps this motorcycle model is not suitable for your body type. And this may happen to people who have a good built and to people who are slim and trim. So, nothing embarrassing in it!
All you need to look for is a model that suits your body and matches your comfort and convenience levels.
How to Know Whether a Particular Motorcycle is Too Heavy for You
If you are struggling with the heaviness of your motorcycle, then it is time to do some research. Touring motorcycles are always going to be heavier than cruisers. So if you are unable to ride a particular motorcycle steadily, then it may be that this model does not suit your body type or you need more practice on light motorcycles before moving on to heavier ones.
To give yourself an idea of whether a particular model is too heavy for you or not, ask for help from friends who ride bikes and try different models until one fits your body structure well. It may take a few rides but even if it takes some time, in the end, you will find out which kind of bikes fit you best and which models you should not go for.
But if after long research and a fair amount of practice, you still feel that it’s hard for you to balance the bike or maneuver it, then do not force yourself into riding a heavy motorcycle just because your friends can handle it. If this motorcycle does not suit your body type and comfortability levels, then do not ride it at any cost! It is better to find out an alternative model than subjecting yourself to unnecessary injuries due to lack of balance or control over the vehicle.
Also, if you are a novice in terms of riding experience, it’s better that you start your riding life with a motorcycle that has lower CC. The higher the CC, the bigger the engine, and therefore, the heavier the bike.
Once you get your skills together and gain a lot of riding experience, then you can easily move up to a bike with higher CC.
Another thing to look for is how you are balancing the motorcycle when it’s idle. If you are using the tip of your toes and not your whole feet, with the ankles touching the ground firmly, you should not consider that particular model of bike. Until and unless you are able to use both your feet and not just your tip-toes to mount a motorcycle comfortably, we recommend you settle for other models.
Also, watch out for bruises on your inner thighs. It’s natural to get some at the beginning of your riding days, but if you consistently keep getting bruised on your inner thighs, probably the motorcycle you are riding is a little too wide for you. Thus, you need to look for better options that are narrower and suitable to your body type.
A pro tip here is, if you can pick up a motorcycle when it’s lying on its side, all by yourself, go for that model because there is a high chance your body is compatible with the built of the bike.
The Best Motorcycles for People with Slim Body Types
There is a motorcycle that is perfect for each body type and thus, even if you feel you do not have the right amount of strength required to ride a motorcycle, don’t let your heart down because we are suggesting you a few bikes that can be just the perfect choice for you –
Suzuki SV 650
Honda Rebel 500
Kawasaki Vulcan S
Harley Davidson SuperLow
Honda CB 300
The seat height of all these models is approximately 30 inches or lower and therefore, they are easy to mount, balance, and maneuver.
As a beginner with little to no experience of riding, we recommend you choose a bike lower than 500 ccs in the beginning and if in terms of height you are on the shorter side, settle for a bike whose height is less and which has got a narrower engine breadth, for if it’s too wide, it will not feel comfortable for riders with shorter height to ride such a wide motorcycle.
Modifications that You Can Do to Your Bike to Make it Even More Suitable for You
If you are transfixed by a particular bike model and you want that no matter what, there are some modifications that you can do to make that bike more suitable for your body type and height.
If the bike feels too heavy, you can take out all the saddlebags, unnecessary equipment, body panels, and even replace the heavier lights on them with smaller lights. This will make your motorcycle immensely light and comfortable to ride.
You can replace the seat with a leaner one so that it becomes easy for you to maneuver the bike and does not stretch your legs at an uncomfortable angle. You can even make some custom adjustments to the rear shock of your motorcycle, which will in turn lower the height of your bike and will make it easier for you to mount it.
Always remember that riding a motorcycle should be fun and not tiresome.
It is always advisable to avoid complicating things as far as possible and if riding a motorcycle fits in this category, then go for something which has a lesser complication. It is always better to choose something that you like and that is suitable for your body type than to go for something that you think you can handle but in reality, cannot.
So when it comes to riding a motorcycle, what matters most is your comfort levels and your skillset. It does not matter how strong you are! If at any point, during your ride, you are not able to enjoy the experience or if you are feeling tired or stressed then there must be something wrong with the bike itself.
So, never push yourself too hard thinking about how strong you are! And make sure to find out soon enough because if this happens on streets where other vehicles are around, serious accidents might occur which will bring along loss of property as well as precious lives!