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Have any of you dragged knee on your bike?

My friend who rides a gixxer, first guy I ever rode with, told me "not to push it with my bike" and I've got about 4k miles under my belt and been turning more aggressively and riding harder roads. (damn sorry for like 2039203 "and"'s in that sentence.)

So anyway, I was wondering what your experiences were and how low you've gotten the EX.

Also indicate if you turn with your body "off the seat" to the side or normally seated.

Thnx.
 

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Normally seated I have scraped the foot pegs at low speeds and darn near that far at fast speeds! I haven't got bold enough to move off the seat in a turn.
 

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i need to hang off bit more to make more use of the available contact patch.


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SoarAndEnvision said:
Have any of you dragged knee on your bike?

My friend who rides a gixxer, first guy I ever rode with, told me "not to push it with my bike" and I've got about 4k miles under my belt and been turning more aggressively and riding harder roads. (damn sorry for like 2039203 "and"'s in that sentence.)

So anyway, I was wondering what your experiences were and how low you've gotten the EX.

Also indicate if you turn with your body "off the seat" to the side or normally seated.

Thnx.
pegs and lower fairing scrapage. booty was 1/4 on the seat, shoulder dropped, head up, elbows spread.

^ kinda like Biggity now that i look at it...
 

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DON'T DO IT! ;D

Work on technique. Books are available for guidelines. Proper body position includes the knee out but as a tool to maintain body alignment with the bike while shifting weight off the bike, not to get it on the pavement. Chasing the knee down as a stand alone technique or goal is dangerous and likely to get you crashed OR be accomplished for all of the wrong reasons. When all else is right, it will happen. I've seen guys get knees down and then find they missed the pucks and ground holes in their leathers because their position was all wrong, striving for the knee down rather than proper body position. And it's weird to watch because it's all wrong. If they're tall eneough they do it, though. :)

Good luck and be careful. Every day you don't crash your bike, you've got tomorrow to go out and practice some more. :)

ALSO, and more importantly, it will be hard to get your knee down properly on one of these without raising it and re-springing it. You'll be hitting the lower fairing, pegs, and then the centerstand arm or pipes, sending you skating down the road in a nice lowside, before to get the lean angle that properly affords a knee down. Real tall people might be able to do it but again, not necessarily for the right reasons. Let the pegs scraping be the warning that they are, that you've hit the limit. Good chance you'll scrape the lower fairing even before the peg. Neither is good.

And take these efforts to the track! Safer conditions and assistance from those who can observe and advise proper technique.
 

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I second dad's observations. I had crap dragging long before the knee was even close. You'll find that shifting off the seat a little goes a long way towards keeping the bike at a more manageable lean angle.
 

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Understand that my post wasn't about practicing moving your weight off the seat. That's fine and can help with scraping issues. On a total stock suspension it won't eliminate the scraping but will certainly help. Just be sure you're practicing proper technique. Balls of the feet on the pegs, spine lined up with the bike's centerline, not pivoting around the tank, upper body to the inside, and with the high bars on these, forearms at least level with the horizon. Make sure you've looked ahead into the bend, finding your apex, before to actually turn in. Once in and settled, on line to hit your apex, look ahead for your exit point. And once settled into the bend, as soon as possible, start picking up the throttle, smoothly applying through to that exit. All of this should be smoothly executed, practiced until it's a seamless set of smooth motions.

Swinging around the tank, almost as if the the gas cap was the center of your arc, is a common mistake and is often not felt by the rider as what he's doing but is very evident to an outside observer. If you try to keep your inside knee against the tank it's almost guaranteed that you'll be all twisted. The inside knee swung outward will help to pull your body back in line with the bike and is the real reason that the knee's put out there in the first place. Using it as a lean gauge is for the extreme and will happen all by itself when all of the other conditions are right.

Before to move your butt, practice with just your upper body leaned to the inside. Make your countersteer input with whatever effort it takes but once at your lean and settled, find the light bar input point that would allow you to let go of the bars at lean and still maintain your line. Don't literally let go of the bars but loosen your grip enough to detect if you could. That's what you want! If the bike would dive to the inside you need more body weight transferred to the inside. Try just upper body first, then when that's no longer enough, start moving your butt over a little. When it's time, that should be done without using the bars as handles and before to turn in. Move your butt over while the bike's still upright taking the load through your knees. On turn in, start using your upper body to the inside to lighten the bar input.

A good reason to use upper body only as a starting point to learn proper cornering is that you can get enough weight transferred that way for a pretty fast corner. It will help as you advance to realize that your upper body is where it's at and moving your butt over only adds some beef to the upper body fine tuning. Many riders start moving their butt over before they ever realized what the light bar feel is all about and as such, tend to get the butt off one way with the upper body either centered or worse, off the opposite way, like a dirt bike, never realizing that it's the upper body that leans in as a fluid part of the corner turn in, butt off the seat or not. Not getting the upper body to the inside is very awkward, never allows the totally light bar feel once settled into the corner, and will need to be unlearned to advance if you develop that bad habit.

Hope that helps. It really does work. :)

BTW, McBig's photo above is pretty decent form. His claim of needing to get off more may have a point but it's decent form for the speed. Body inside, knee out, head turned looking well ahead. He may be able to do it faster with more body help but that's not exactly slow as is. Right Big? :)
 

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i think maybe just another couple inches of my ass off the seat and I'll be good. I'm far from slow, but far from the fastest on the EX at the track. Always more to learn.
 

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I've been told many times over by various individuals that there is no such thing as a universally acceptable proper form, that each person should develop a form that works for them. I've read several racing magazine interviews with top AMA and WSBK riders and they all pretty much say the same thing.
 

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the basic concept is the same. Lean off = less lean angle=more traction.

there are some drastically different forms out there-
most noticebly- Miguel Duhamel-



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Knightslugger said:
I've been told many times over by various individuals that there is no such thing as a universally acceptable proper form, that each person should develop a form that works for them. I've read several racing magazine interviews with top AMA and WSBK riders and they all pretty much say the same thing.
It's true that different styles evolve. Ben Spies with his elbows out like a dirt bike is a classic example of that. Probably the only one doing it that way. Others will get themselves twisted to varying degrees. That's the way that the body wants to go if you get your butt WAY off the seat. Very few are turned very much, though.

The main thing that none of them do is carry weight on the bars, hang their feet down, sit as a lump on the seat without the pegs loaded carrying a portion of their weight, or fail to look ahead, selecting an apex, then further ahead selecting their exit point. The biggest variation is how much the body is turned and very few do that to an extreme terribly different from what's outlined.

What I outlined is the approach for a rider who is new to the technique. What to do to get started in the right direction. After he's gotten the basics down, but especially the light bar feel and looking deep, he can play with the fine tuning because he will be in the bend, settled and relaxed, comfortably in control. Adding a push here, a little weight there, is easy to do and easy for him to interpret the effectiveness. Most riders don't stray terribly far from the basics as outlined though, because they work.

And yes, there's more that can be added. This format and within a couple of paragraphs, you can hardly cover things in the detail that can be considered the beginning and end. That's why there are whole books on the subject and why I recommend a person get them and read them. Hopefully, a post like this will encourage the reader to do so by identifying that there are many things that go into the whole cornering package and just moving your butt over without any plan beyond that is potentially trouble, not help. If you do get one of those books, one thing you won't find is any major disagreement, or even minor disagreement, with what I outlined. It's the elementary stuff. The starting point.

Good luck. I hope it helps somebody. :)
 

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agreed. The basics are all the same, the form varies. Just to reiterate what Biggity said, the basic concept is the same. When i first read about form and function etc etc on a motorcycle, i thought immediately about Formula 1 car design (I'm a complete fool for anything F1). You have a specification of what the car must be and look at how the end result differs between cars! So, i'd like to think of the motorcycle racers as the car's exterior and the car's specification as what they are doing.

there's always one more way to skin a cat! Good posts Dad!
 

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One thing to be careful of when looking at still pictures is where in the corner the picture was taken. At different points the rider's position will change. That change is usually in the upper body, adjusting the weight advantage fluidly through the bend. And some pictures are staged for the camera, possibly exagerating a movement for photo effect, not necessarily speed. And some of those pics are WAY COOL! 8) ;D

That's also why I suggest starting with just the upper body for those new at this. Balls of the feet up on the pegs and carrying some weight, look deep into the corner, after the steering input to initiate the turn and once at lean and on line, use the upper body to the inside as required to afford the light bar feel. It's ultimately the light bar feel that's being maintained and moving the upper body is a very big way of adjusting this through the bend.

An early photo, at and immediately after turn in, especially when trail braking the front, may have the rider fairly upright. As he hits the apex, the upper body will be fairly low and inside, throttle coming on. By the exit he may actually be pushing the bike up, away from him, getting it up on the meat of the tire.

And just to add some confusion to this, ;) you can actually push the bike around to lean it more or less if you're gearing isn't quite right for the bend. ??? It takes advantage of the tire's circumference change, therefore effecting a gearing change. This would typically occur, if at all, as you are completing the turn, approaching the exit. The light bar and relaxed feeling that a good corner package affords also affords the mental time to evaluate the condition and decide if it's time to use that, then execute it properly. Should you even give any thought to this before you're cornering smoothly and with a solid package? Hell, no. It's the kind of stuff you can play with WAY down the road, AFTER you've got the basics working. You may wind up with a style a little out of the ordinary but it will always address these same basics.
 

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Ya but how many years experience do those riders have???
I have only been riding for two years and getting the bike over that far is a little scary.
 
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I wouldn't get my very-expensive-and-painful-to-fix knees anywhere near those roughly graded jumbles of concrete and asphalt we call "roads"; one knee bump against a joint, swell or hunk of gravel could be the end of it.
 

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haha!
well, turn 3 isn't much better with the "gator strips" at the apex.
those don't feel so well.



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McBiggity said:
haha!
well, turn 3 isn't much better with the "gator strips" at the apex.
those don't feel so well.
Yeah if your going to drag a knee across them, you'll need knee pucks the size of skies.

FOG
 

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It will come in time. Don't drag the knee just to drag the knee. There is a reason why it's done and keep it on the track.
 
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