motorcycle riding glossary

To avoid confusion and put everyone on the same page, here is glossary of motorcycle riding terms to help you better define your problems in search of results. Enjoy.

Apex: 1. The highest inside point in a turn. 2. The point at which the rider comes the closest to the inside edge of the track is his apex.

Attention: 1. Focused awareness. 2. Directing the senses towards something known or unknown. 3. The ability to focus in on some aspect of riding.

Blue Groove: 1. Where the usable portion of the track builds up a layer of used rubber that is blueish in color and offer high traction.

Chicane: 1. A 3-turn section of track with each turn immediately following after the other. 2. A section of track added to slow rider speed, frequently added after straight sections of track.

Decision: The result of thinking through a riding problem and generating a plan intended to serve as a solution. 2. A decision is an idea that is translated into intended motion by the rider to correct or improve existing rider technique.

Deep: 1. The idea of keeping the bike vertical for as long as possible into a corner before leaning the bike onto its side late into the turn.

Drive: 1. The point at which acceleration begins.

Early Apex: 1. Coming close to the inside of the turn before the actual highest point of the turn.

Early Entry: 1. Beginning the turn at the earliest opportunity.

Entry: 1. Where the rider decides to start initiating steering inputs to lean the bike into a corner.

Esses: 1. 2 or more turns in successions, generally high-speed and laid out in an elongated 'S' shape.

Exit: 1. Where the turn begins to straighten out and acceleration begins. 2. The point at which a rider sees his way clear to begin the drive out of a corner.

Groove: 1. The part of the track with the best traction. Also known as a 'race line.'

Head shake: 1. A mildly unstable condition of the motorcycle where the forks begin oscillating side to side as the bike goes forward.

High line: 1. Away from the inside of the track.

Idea: 1. A grasp of a situation and its parts.

Late Apex: 1. Coming closest to the inside edge of the track past the actual highest point of the turn.

Low Line: 1. Close to the inside edge of the track. 2. Inside of the race line.

Loose: 1. Portions of the track that have changing levels of traction, resulting in a controlled but noticeable sliding.

Line: 1. The path a motorcycle and rider take when negotiating a turn. 2. The location of a bike at any point through a turn.

Middle: 1. The center portion of a turn. 2. The point at which steering ends and acceleration begins.

Plan: 1. A procedure a rider has decided upon. 2. The ordering of actions that can be predicted. 3. Where a rider spends his attention and how long he leaves it on each action.

Pointing: 1. The rider's actions that result in the bike going in an intended direction. Steering and sliding are two aspects of pointing.

Reference Point: 1. The exact location a rider uses to judge his position on the track. 2. A known point of area that tells a rider when to perform some action (brake, steer, accelerate.)

Sampling: 1. The act of sensing motion of the machine (speed, handling, lean angle, traction.) The shifting of attention from motion to thought and back in order to measure changing conditions with a rider's plan.

Scrub Off: 1. To reduce speed in a turn by leaning a bike over more than necessary or widening the path of travel through a corner. Note, no change in throttle application.

Tank Slapper: 1. A rapid and excessive alternating motion of the handlebars along their arc of travel. 2. The fork assembly goes from steering stop to steering stop in rapid succession.

Target: 1. An exactly defined, short-term goal.

Wiggle: 1. An unstable condition of a motorcycle wherein the front and back are oscillating from side-to-side.