The Co-Rider, Passenger; we are 2-up, co-pilot
We are called Co-Rider, Passenger; we are 2-up, co-pilot. So really what does that mean? From the past we were know as a passenger, we sat on the back or rear seat of a motorcycle. Today we are mostly called co-riders. Why do I say that? To me not only do we sit and enjoy the wind in our face, it is being out looking at the vast scenery, we help act as another set of eyes. We help watch out for objects such as cars, dogs, deer, and people. Actually when you sit on a motorcycle you do not think of these things.
The word passenger to some is a person who has no responsibilities for the operation of the bike or car; they are simply along for the ride and nothing more. A co-rider, on the other hand, actually mean what it implies, they help share some of the responsibilities for the motorcycle such a safety.
Like in a car, we as passengers, only sit and watch out the window, with no care in the world. To some point. Think about it. What do you do? You read, talk on the phone, if there are other people in the car you are talking and paying attention to them. Am I right?
On a motorcycle there are more dangerous situations so you need to pay attention. A great way to know what it is like on a motorcycle is to sign up for the motorcycle course to get your license. You may never want to drive or as the term is called ride your own. But is a great way to know what your driver knows, and what it is like to see what they see and feel on the motorcycle, not only know what it is like to be a co-rider. If one day you do decide on getting your own motorcycle you have already taken the course and are ready to go out on your own.
Now while you are on the back of that bike, there are a few things you need to remember! Learn to sit still. I do confess, I do move around a little. It is so I can get comfortable. Like my rider (driver) he moves around or shifts a bit to get comfortable. So why shouldn’t I? For starters he knows that he is moving, so he can compensate his movements. This is balancing of the bike. The rider, on the other hand, has no clue that you need to move or shift. Here is that word…. Communication…. This is a must! Before that adjustment, let your rider know that you are not comfortable and you need to move a little. This way he is prepared for any changes. When you first get on the back, you are not sure of what to do. For example do I lean with the bike in corners, how much do I lean? Or do I just sit still and not move? Theses questions get answered as you get accustomed to riding. Yes you lean a bit, but you lean as your rider is leaning. Good rule of thumb. Just ask. Was I leaning too far? Etc. If you do not have head set communications in your helmets, then come up with some way to communicate, like tapping on the riders shoulder, hand signals or other forms.
If you think of it this way you are riding as a team. If you see a potential problem or issue, speak up to your rider. Remember they may already see the problem before you do, if not don’t yell it out simply talk to your rider. They in turn should not assume that you see everything especially in front of them. If you really think of what you see, you see the back of his helmet. You have to peek around them to see. One good practice to get into, is to slightly sit to the left or right of you rider. Most of the time, to the right. They see more on the left. From what I found out. While others to the right. It all depends on how they ride. So do what you think is comfortable.
One important note, we co-riders get a lot of wind sitting on the back and the riders sometimes forget that. If it is cold out, that wind really whips around making you colder. Look into a taller wind shield for the bike, and side air wings (air deflectors) they make riding comfortable for the passenger and the rider. It takes a lot of the wind off me and helps keep me warmer. In the summer the air deflectors can be positioned to add wind on us or keep it off.
I haven’t even talked about what clothing gear to wear yet. You see as a co-rider we also get colder than our rider. So we tend to wear more clothing to keep warm in the cooler days while we ride. I make sure I have on layers. You can get long underwear to help out. Also get a good leather jacket that has a windproof and waterproof liner. Some of the new textile jackets also keep you dry and warm. Get good leather gloves that are windproof and water proof some of the gloves you can buy a liner too. Wear chaps or nice riding pants.
I have to laugh when we first go our bike there wasn’t the nice heated gear like now. I see so many people wearing them. They are battery powered. If you have one of those nice new Honda Goldwings, they come with heated seats. So if you get cold plug in your heated jackets and pants. Don’t forget the gloves come heated too. Oh another thing the rider can get those heated hand grips to help keep his fingers warm. Oh what luxury theses days. If you still have questions there are plenty of answers.
Not only are we companions to our riders. We also want to have fun too. SO why should we sit at home, we can spend quality time with the one we love. Which is a wonderful thing to do to get closer in your relationship. Who knows you may find something new to spark your love.