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Don't know if this is useful or interesting but thought I'd post this while all still fresh...


I chatted to some blood bikers a couple of years ago and one thing led to another and I ended up signing up with the IAM roughly a year ago. My motivation was partly that I quite fancied doing blood bike work but mainly that although I'd been riding for nearly 25 years I rode too quickly on roads I knew, I was crap at reading roads I didn't know. Essentially I wanted to lengthen to odds of having an accident by improving my riding ability and confidence. I was assigned to a local group and an observer got in touch. We did an initial chat about what I wanted to achieve and a first observational ride. This is just to pick up what I was doing at the time and form a plan to get me to the point where I could pass the IAM test. It's important to note that this isn't a personal improvement plan as such as it aims to get everyone who goes through the process to the same point following the same system. However, you will end up working on the bits you're worse at. As expected I was poor at reading roads, my lines were all over the place and my observation wasn't great. I also went the wrong way around a mini-roundabout which is a bad thing... who knew.


So over the next year I did...


  • [list=]
  • About 3 observed rides with observers assigned to me at the monthly meet (I should have done more of these but they were always first thing on sunday)


  • [list=]
  • Two look, lean and roll courses at a local lorry training ground they hired (got to the edge of my tyres in 1st gear, superb exercises)

[list=]Two bike skills days at Thruxton (not track days but extremely cool nevertheless)

...and I got written course material. Reading the police riders handbook also was useful.


The observed rides took 2-3 hours each with my observer riding in front occasionally to show me examples but mostly me riding ahead being directed by their signals. What would tend to be the pattern to a run would be I'd ride ahead and we'd stop after 20 minutes or so discuss that part of the ride and then talk about what we'd do next. We'd do sections of the run out in the country, on the motorway, through town and so on. At the end of the ride we would sit down, discuss the ride and then mark the ride in terms of a score sheet provided by the IAM. This gave a good indication of process and what to focus on next.


Between the rides it was crucial to get out and practice what we'd been discussing. For me this meant mainly working on road reading and using the correct lines to help with that. Additionally my slow speed riding was pretty poor so I'd practice that quite a lot too.


When I was ready for the test I then did what they call a cross-check which is an observed ride by a different observer. This is pretty much a mock test but a lot more informal so you get the opportunity to learn from it rather than just get a result.


The last stage is the test itself. I met up with a ex-policeman and we went on a two hour route with me being directed by his indicator signals. This was my opportunity to show all the things I'd learned during the course and to show how well I 'rode the system'. This was preceded by a chat to set me at ease, to test my eye sight and to test my knowledge of the highway code. After the run I gave a summary of the run and we discussed the observer's observations and I got my result.


In my case it was a pass but I didn't reach the level of competence to get a first.


If you're interested in improving your skills, you're happy learning a specific method that is similar to police riding I guess, you're happy being told what you're doing is wrong and how to improve them and you're happy to put a ton of time in to self-improvement then this is a good process to go through. If you want specific guidance on single aspects of your riding and don't want to do the IAM test then I'd get some 1 on 1 (or whatever) private training. If you're argumentative, take criticism badly or think you know everything already then this is most definitely not for you and you won't have fun.


Any questions, please ask. This is just my view having been through the process over the last year, it's not supposed to be representative of how you'll find it and I don't really want to argue with you if you tried it and thought it was crap :wink:


By the way, I started the course riding my 2007 Honda CBR1000RR and then switched to a KTM 1190 Adventure after 3 months and made my life immeasurably easier.


Cheers,


Mark

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been there .. done that .. got the certificate .. i learnt nothing new.. :popcorn:

 

I have been riding since the early 70s an Observer for over 10 years presently a National Observer and Local Observer Assessor, I also support the local police deliver bike safe. I am still learning.


When you think there is nothing more to learn please get an organ donor card i'm sure it will be useful very soon. :bike:

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Thanks for the info [mention]dern[/mention], it was very helpful. I asked my instructor if I should take that course after passing my test but he said I need to ride more to gain experience first before I should go on that and I won't see the benefit as much as if I did it after a couple of years riding. I didn't realise there was a test at the end though. :shock:

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been there .. done that .. got the certificate .. i learnt nothing new.. :popcorn:

 

I have been riding since the early 70s an Observer for over 10 years presently a National Observer and Local Observer Assessor, I also support the local police deliver bike safe. I am still learning.


When you think there is nothing more to learn please get an organ donor card i'm sure it will be useful very soon. :bike:

 

If there is data to show that iams are faster round a track I'll believe you!

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Thanks for the info @dern, it was very helpful. I asked my instructor if I should take that course after passing my test but he said I need to ride more to gain experience first before I should go on that and I won't see the benefit as much as if I did it after a couple of years riding. I didn't realise there was a test at the end though. :shock:

 

There is a new process where you may not have to sit a test but be signed off by your observer as such as your riding progresses to a suitable standard . However why would you not want the chance to be critiqued by generallya Class 1 police rider ...

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If there is data to show that iams are faster round a track I'll believe you!

 

Please buy and read this week's MCN.

Peter Hickman is taught how to improve his road riding, making him a safer rider on the road. There is never any suggestion that the instructor could come close to his speeds in BSB or at the TT.

Surely nobody thinks that the point of IAM training is to make you the fastest kid from A to B ? They insist you stick to all speed limits and rules of the road ! Any numpty can get there quicker by ignoring all that and putting their life at risk, and track riding is a completely different discipline to riding legally (and safely) on the road.

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Surely nobody thinks that the point of IAM training is to make you the fastest kid from A to B ? They insist you stick to all speed limits and rules of the road ! Any numpty can get there quicker by ignoring all that and putting their life at risk, and track riding is a completely different discipline to riding legally (and safely) on the road.

 

Although it's definitely increased my average speed A to B.

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Surely nobody thinks that the point of IAM training is to make you the fastest kid from A to B ? They insist you stick to all speed limits and rules of the road ! Any numpty can get there quicker by ignoring all that and putting their life at risk, and track riding is a completely different discipline to riding legally (and safely) on the road.

 

Although it's definitely increased my average speed A to B.

 

Yes, that I believe !

Now, if you want to be faster around a race track, you'll have to take track training (which still won't make you as fast as a racer unless you have the necessary talent).

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When you think there is nothing more to learn please get an organ donor card i'm sure it will be useful very soon. :bike:

 

oh dear the smugness is with you typical of IAM :up: .... i`ve been doing this since 1982 and still in one piece .. and don`t hold your breath you`ll be needing a free buss pass before me ..

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If there is data to show that iams are faster round a track I'll believe you!

 

Please buy and read this week's MCN.

Peter Hickman is taught how to improve his road riding, making him a safer rider on the road. There is never any suggestion that the instructor could come close to his speeds in BSB or at the TT.

Surely nobody thinks that the point of IAM training is to make you the fastest kid from A to B ? They insist you stick to all speed limits and rules of the road ! Any numpty can get there quicker by ignoring all that and putting their life at risk, and track riding is a completely different discipline to riding legally (and safely) on the road.

 

If I wanted to be safer on the road I would indeed stick to the speed limit. I can't imagine what else could make me safer on the road. Polite hi vis jacket maybe?


I do largely obey the rules of the road, except overtaking on solid middle lines, the odd wheelie etc.

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Guest Richzx6r

If there is data to show that iams are faster round a track I'll believe you!

 

Please buy and read this week's MCN.

Peter Hickman is taught how to improve his road riding, making him a safer rider on the road. There is never any suggestion that the instructor could come close to his speeds in BSB or at the TT.

Surely nobody thinks that the point of IAM training is to make you the fastest kid from A to B ? They insist you stick to all speed limits and rules of the road ! Any numpty can get there quicker by ignoring all that and putting their life at risk, and track riding is a completely different discipline to riding legally (and safely) on the road.

 

If I wanted to be safer on the road I would indeed stick to the speed limit. I can't imagine what else could make me safer on the road. Polite hi vis jacket maybe?


I do largely obey the rules of the road, except overtaking on solid middle lines, the odd wheelie etc.

 

:shock: you mean you dont already strictly stick to the speed limit :roll:

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Please buy and read this week's MCN.

Peter Hickman is taught how to improve his road riding, making him a safer rider on the road. There is never any suggestion that the instructor could come close to his speeds in BSB or at the TT.

Surely nobody thinks that the point of IAM training is to make you the fastest kid from A to B ? They insist you stick to all speed limits and rules of the road ! Any numpty can get there quicker by ignoring all that and putting their life at risk, and track riding is a completely different discipline to riding legally (and safely) on the road.

 

If I wanted to be safer on the road I would indeed stick to the speed limit. I can't imagine what else could make me safer on the road. Polite hi vis jacket maybe?


I do largely obey the rules of the road, except overtaking on solid middle lines, the odd wheelie etc.

 

:shock: you mean you dont already strictly stick to the speed limit :roll:

 

Of course I do


Sometimes

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If I wanted to be safer on the road I would indeed stick to the speed limit. I can't imagine what else could make me safer on the road. Polite hi vis jacket maybe?


I do largely obey the rules of the road, except overtaking on solid middle lines, the odd wheelie etc.

 

Interesting.. so the posted speed limit on a road indicates the safe speed to negotiate that road at :?:

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Interesting.. so the posted speed limit on a road indicates the safe speed to negotiate that road at :?:

 

depends on how many old self-satisfied, complacent, self-congratulatory, superior, puffed up, pleased with oneself, self-approving, well pleased, proud of oneself twats there are in your way ... :booty:

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Interesting.. so the posted speed limit on a road indicates the safe speed to negotiate that road at :?:

 

depends on how many old self-satisfied, complacent, self-congratulatory, superior, puffed up, pleased with oneself, self-approving, well pleased, proud of oneself twats there are in your way ... :booty:

 


:popcorn: :popcorn:

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I got the IAM qual because they recognised an advanced rider course I did as part of my job, I'll be honest, the only reason I looked into IAM was to see if I could get an insurance discount. All training IMHO is good training, even if its bad, I think we learn just as much from identifying crap as we do good things, I've seen some pretty atrocious riding on this island, especially during TT, usually from F--k wits who think that their WSB heroes! It usually ends in tears, I've also seen some pretty exemplary riding from newbies with L plates. The danger is complacency! Some people have a tendency to sit back on their laurels, put their feet up, judge everyone else in the misguided belief that they know it all .... None of us know it all, regardless of who we think we are and again IMHO, a good rider will continue to learn every time he puts the key in the ignition and takes to the road, I don't think you necessarily need to do advanced training, all you need is the ability to be able to reflect and learn from your self identified weaknesses, I feel that extended training is good at helping overcome issues you may have self identified, with the focus on that training geared to assisting you in overcoming those problems, you don't necessarily need a certificate or a sticker for your bike to say you've done it.

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Don't know if this is useful or interesting but thought I'd post this while all still fresh...

[..]


  • [list=]
  • Two look, lean and roll courses at a local lorry training ground they hired (got to the edge of my tyres in 1st gear, superb exercises)

[list=]Two bike skills days at Thruxton (not track days but extremely cool nevertheless)

...and I got written course material. Reading the police riders handbook also was useful.


Mark

 

Good writeup, thanks!


Is there any way to go through the courses you've listed without doing IAM? I still have ways to go (you can check my other thread if you want to have a good laugh), but I am very interested in what courses I can eventually take to improve my skills.

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Good writeup, thanks!


Is there any way to go through the courses you've listed without doing IAM? I still have ways to go (you can check my other thread if you want to have a good laugh), but I am very interested in what courses I can eventually take to improve my skills.

 

There are plenty of commercial road riding courses you can do but I imagine it would work out quite a lot more expensive but still worth it. In term of the stuff you learn you could do worse than simply getting a copy of the police riders handbook, reading a bit of it and going and to practice it. You'd probably gain plenty from that.

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Interesting.. so the posted speed limit on a road indicates the safe speed to negotiate that road at :?:

 

depends on how many old self-satisfied, complacent, self-congratulatory, superior, puffed up, pleased with oneself, self-approving, well pleased, proud of oneself twats there are in your way ... :booty:

 

The goal of the thread was to give a bit of an insight as to the process if you were interested. The sense of arguing about it completely escapes me.

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Good writeup, thanks!


Is there any way to go through the courses you've listed without doing IAM? I still have ways to go (you can check my other thread if you want to have a good laugh), but I am very interested in what courses I can eventually take to improve my skills.

 

There are plenty of commercial road riding courses you can do but I imagine it would work out quite a lot more expensive but still worth it. In term of the stuff you learn you could do worse than simply getting a copy of the police riders handbook, reading a bit of it and going and to practice it. You'd probably gain plenty from that.

 

Thanks, I already have this book and the car version, it's a really good one (if somewhat dry, but I don't mind), the system it proposes makes total sense to me. I just started riding (well, I have a mandatory break in my training due to crashing early and hard) and I was lucky enough to have a police rider as 1 on 1 instructor for a couple of hours and he told me about IAM - I'll definitely try and check it out when I am ready - especially now that I am aware there are specialized courses I can take, thanks to your post

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