Written by: Liam Smith
When I was 13, I started riding motorcycles with my uncle. He was the black sheep in our family and viewed as the “Rebel”. I always found him to be cool and admired his stance on life “to live and be free as you see fit”. When I got on my first motorcycle, I remember the freedom, nothing between me and the wind. I flew down a dirt road on the backend our families farm and “boy oh boy” did I love every second. My uncle introduced me to a few necessities to help keep me safe while riding.
A good, sturdy pair of pants with some basic armoring/ reinforcement in certain key spots around the knees, ankles, groin. A good pair of boots, reinforced around the heel and ankle. A good pair of gloves that protected not just the fingers but the wrist, a helmet, a good pair of sunglasses to protect your eyes from the sun but debris and a nice jacket to help keep you warm and extra protection. He always said these were the basics for a safe ride, besides learning how to properly drive a motorcycle out in public. (What safety gear do you need to ride a motorcycle? | by motorcyclegear | Medium) One of the wisdoms he shared, “you will develop not just your style of riding but your look as well for it becomes an extension of you”. At first, I didn’t understand that last one but as I rode on motorcycles more, I’ve finally come to understand it very well.
As with everything, you have to become comfortable doing anything (driving a car, riding a bicycle, a new outfit you have never worn in public before). Once it becomes second nature, you loosen up and enjoy it more. It incorporates in to your life and becomes an expression of you and your lifestyle. But there was also a shallower purpose to his statement. How are you going to dress when you ride (casual, bad boy motorcyclist, stylish hipster, so on). This is a lifestyle that is highly flexible and easily adaptable to you. From hoping on a motorcycle in your t shirt and jeans for short trips to visit people , to wearing your work cloths to go to work or the more protective gear for long weekend journeys or motorcycle meets including a classic leather jacket and chap with saddle bags on your motorcycle to carry what you need for your journey.