What about you all?
Ride safe and keep it shiny side up.
In my view, everyone should start riding on dirt bikes. You learn how to ride, the controls, what slipping feels like, how all sorts of situations ARE recoverable, get some falls in, etc. You also learn, first hand, just how important a helmet is...when your head hits the ground. How important boots are...when rocks are hitting your ankles. How important gloves are...when you are skidding, hands first, across the ground. Hips, shoulders, chest, all of it.
So, once you start riding street, you're not without experience. You're not totally knew to EVERYTHING and can focus more on the differences, weighting the inside, which you never do in the dirt, cars, road debris, pedestrians, pets, toys, suicidal kids, junk falling off work trucks, all that stuff.
Before long, you develop the confidence that street is NOT dirt where hitting the ground, or other stuff, is when, not if. Street becomes 'if' which becomes 'how do I reduce 'if'?
To me, 'if' amounts to what I call take offs and landings and curves. We can all ride straight all day. Street bike accidents are starting, stopping and curves. To me, those are ALL about proper technique and practice. And practice. And practice.
And that means the more your ride, the better. And this is where the points cross;
For me, ATGATT means LESS riding. It just does. I simply am not putting on boots and riding pants and riding jacket and gloves just to go get beer. Or parts. Or to the bank. Or to grab a few groceries. Or just to take a quick ride. If I hold myself to ATGATT, a LOT of short trips don't happen.
That's a LOT of stops and starts, take offs and landings, and curves I DON'T get in. A LOT.
1,000 miles for me is more like 50 trips of 20 miles or less. Really, its more like 100 trips around town.
1,000 miles, ATGATT, for most people, means the weekly ride and that means, what, 5 trips? Maybe 10? Less in some cases?
Clearly, 50-100 out and backs, parking lots, stop lights, 4 way stops, all of that, is FAR better for anyone's overall skill than 5 or 10 of those.
So, increased risk and much faster increase in practical skill and experience vs. somewhat reduced risk and much longer learning curve.
This is not for everybody. Just my view.
Further, guys like Keith Code point out there is no good place to have a motorcycle accident. That's all the gear or butt naked. So, again, I argue for what I think it gonna get me to being better at avoiding a wreck in the first place.
And another thing. When I ride in shorts and a t shirt and, yes, sometimes my Crocs, I am VERY aware of my mortality, my vulnerability. It doesn't make me scared. It just makes me stay IN the moment.
I gear up, man, for me, I know damn well I push it faster and harder, very much so. That, for sure, is also a skill enhancer but, it is also putting me closer to the edge.
I would never talk ANYONE out of ATGATT. If I ever go down, I want a pause button so I can totally gear up, plus some, before I hit. I just have my view and my reasons and my goal is to avoid needing the pause button in the first place in exchange for not having much gear on if, when, it happens. For a wreck that is gonna mess me up but, bad, regardless.
I mean, consider. Much better for a low side to be geared up. No doubt. What about hitting a guard rail? My head hits a post, I'm dead no matter what helmet I have on and, as for the other gear, my legs and back are still gonna break. So, I don't need a skin graft as well?
My focus is on skill, experience more so than gear and, for me, they don't go together.