Jerry "Motorman" Palladino
DVD ($29.95) and VHS ($24.95), 52 minutes
Filmed and edited by Jim Miller
Ride Like a Pro
Riding Skills Book Reviews:
Idiot's Guide to Motorcycles |
Riding in the Zone | Motorcycle
Track Days for Virgins | Stayin' Safe: The Art and Science of Riding Really Well
Secret Skills of Motorcycle Riding | UK Road Signs, Road Laws and Licensing Books |
Streetbikes: Everything You Need To Know |
Performance Riding Techniques |
How To Ride a Motorcycle |
MSF's Motorcycling Excellence, 2nd Edition |
Smooth Riding the Pridmore Way by Reg Pridmore | David Hough's
More Proficient Motorcycling and
Street Strategies |
Ride Smart by Pat Hahn |
Real World by Gary Jaehne |
Riding Techniques by Nick Ienatsch |
by Lee Parks |
Twist of the Wrist,
Twist of the Wrist II
by Keith Code |
Roadcraft: The Police Rider's Handbook |
Your Advanced Motorcycling Test (U.K.) |
and Off-Road Riding Techniques |
Motorcycling Excellence by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation
More Book Reviews: Listed on our
Motorcycle Books Page
Ride Like a Pro III |
Ride Like a Pro for the Ladies
Schools, Training and Track Days
There can never be too many motorcycle
training courses, books or videos. Learning how to ride a
motorcycle is a continuous evolution. That's what makes it
so much fun -- there's always something new to learn and new
techniques to master to help enrich the experience.
Unfortunately, there are way too
many unskilled riders on the road today. They are a danger
to themselves, to others, and they give us all a bad reputation.
From what I've seen, there are very few motorcyclists who really
seem to know what they're doing and who look comfortable on
their bikes. I'd be that very few of them take the study
of motorcycle riding very seriously, and who knows how many have
read a motorcycle riding skills book or have taken a basic
formal training course?
Books are great also as a way to
learn more and to help the rider think about new concepts, and
in today's electronic world, you'd think that there would be
dozens of videos for sale. But we're very surprised and dismayed
at the paucity of motorcycle training videos of any type that
A quick search on Amazon.com for the words "motorcycle training"
under the DVD section comes up zilch.
This isn't to say
that a training video would be the answer to all motorcycle riding
problems, but videos should be one of the tools that a
conscientious rider uses to improve her or his riding ability.
There are many books available that do an excellent job of
explaining different strategies for safe riding (see the wBW
Motorcycle Books page for a complete listing), and training courses such as the
Motorcycle Safety Foundation's
Basic Rider Course, the Experienced Rider Course, and advanced training such
as the track day courses available from Freddy Spencer, Reg Pridmore and
others should be on the lifetime curriculum for every rider.
You may not have heard of Jerry "Motorman" Palladino,
but he's realized that an opportunity exists and he seems
to have the market covered on motorcycle training videos.
His series of DVDs include the Motorcycle Endorsement video to
help new riders pass state licensing exams; the Ride Like a Pro
series, which uses some of the motorcycle Police techniques to
help recently licensed riders, and this video, Ride Like a Pro
for the Ladies.
Ride Like a Pro for the Ladies
uses Motorman's basic three-step technique to help newly
licensed riders. The techniques are based on the actual
training given to a "MotorMan", or a law enforcement officer
assigned to a motorcycle unit. The stated goal of the video is modest,
as it should be: "a step-by-step approach to perfecting low
speed handling and maneuvers." After all, it would be
impossible to cover every aspect of motorcycle riding in a video
format without either glossing over the important details or
taking way too much time for a DVD format.
The implied concept behind this
video is that a relatively new motorcycle rider can practice
a few simple low-speed handling exercises and become much more
comfortable with their motorcycle as they learn about how
the bike handles. This knowledge can then be transferred
street, because the rider will feel more comfortable about
their abilities. Most beginners have trouble at low
speeds, and practicing low speed maneuvers is key to learning
clutch, brake and throttle control. That's what this video
is all about.
Motorman has done a great job of
focusing on the basics. Four women motorcycle riders are
the students, and the Motorman gently steps them through the
series of practice exercises, which demonstrate that even
lightweight riders with minimal experience can learn how to
handle a heavy bike. Palladino is always respectful to his
students and stays focused on the training.
The video production is decent,
although the background is a bit distracting because it was
filmed in a strip mall parking lot, and
traffic is visible in the background. The camera also
seems to have some difficulty in keeping focus as it comes out
of zoom, but these are minor quibbles and do nothing to detract
from the overall purpose.
In fact, the real surprise is
that the video was filmed complete in one day, and the riders
did it all in one take! Pretty amazing stuff, I'd say. The
Motorman says that in addition "there were no knocked
over cones or any type of screw ups from the ladies in the video
and none of them had more than 4 or 5 hours of practice. I
believe they did a wonderful job." I agree!
The exercises include a brief
discussion of the "friction zone", the brakes and the throttle,
and a tip on how to pick up a dropped motorcycle. The core
exercises are practicing the slow cone weave, learning to lean
the motorcycle to turn, the offset cone weave, the U-turn and
Riders with some experience
will probably think that these exercises are "kid stuff", but I
guarantee that there are very few experienced riders who could
run through each of these without learning something.
Motorcycling takes lots of practice, and the basic exercises in
the video are a good place to start. The DVD comes with a
one-page instruction sheet that explain each exercises and has
the measurements and layout for the practice cones, which can be
made from tennis balls that have been sawed in half.
Ride Like a Pro for the Ladies has some good tips on slow-speed
practice exercises for beginning riders. Jerry "Motorman"
Palladino gets maximum kudos for basically self-funding a video
that is focused on the expanding women's motorcycle riding
market. But the secret is that any motorcycle rider could
benefit by using the lessons learned in this video.
This is not a video that is
designed for the viewer to watch in the living room with the
expectation of learning everything necessary to ride a
motorcycle. It's narrowly focused on low-speed riding
improvements, and it's designed to be used as a tool to learn
and then go out and practice what has been learned. There
aren't many motorcycle riding skills videos out there, but if
you're serious about improving your skills (and you should be),
then this is worth a look.
The wBW "Flaming Helmet"
Review Rating System |