I don’t own a Harley, but I like the brand, and I think they offer quality motorcycles. I love going to the Harley dealer, and I have plenty of friends who ride them. We all get along, and so one weekend I went with a friend to take the skilled rider course offered by Harley Davidson.
The rider training course ran for two days, which is perfect as you have enough time to learn without getting overwhelmed or bored. It isn’t exactly a course for new riders, but there are a number of classes offered, all of them taught by instructors who live and breathe Harley.
I went to the location in San Diego as it’s just down the street from my house. Upon arriving, I was greeted by a very courteous employee, and my friend and I were introduced to the instructor. We brought our own bikes but if you are looking to take the most basic class, you are provided a Harley Davidson. We registered online, and all we had to do was show our license, proof of insurance and the usual safety gear (DOT approved helmets, eyewear).
The course was both simple and effective. For starters, we worked with the instructor to control our bikes at low speeds, and we worked on risk management. Meaning, he taught us how to scan for problems and check out the traffic ahead and behind us. Then, we worked on cornering, which has always been something that I need help on, especially considering I live near a few mountains. After that, we worked on swerving and on stopping in both straight and curvy situations.
One of the great parts about the course is the instructor giving one-on-one advice. The instructor personally helped me improve my cornering judgment, which as mentioned is something I came into the course hoping to improve. In the end, he made us feel welcome, and we got a lot out of the class. At the end of the class, we received a MSF Basic RiderCourse 2 completion card. If you have not taken a safety class, this may save you money on insurance as it shows the provider that you are serious about road safety.
Conclusively, though there are more comprehensive courses on rider training and safety, the HD class is an excellent option. They offer most levels from basic to advanced, so no matter where you’re at there is likely something to suit you. And the truth is, without someone experienced pointing out your bad habits, you’ll simply continue to reinforce them every time you get on your bike.
So all in all, I would say it was a great experience and don’t regret it in the least.