How to pull out of a rear wheel skid - Infographic
Learn how to recover a rear wheel slide like a pro
A rear wheel skid will scare the hell out of you at first. Sliding the back of a car using the handbrake is easy and fun, but with a motorcycle, things can go bad in a fraction of a second. When the rear tire of your bike locks up, there’s a big chance for you to go sideways and fall. You have to be prepared and compensate any lateral movement.
The straight skid is the simplest to recover. Both rear and front wheel are aligned. In this situation, you can release the pressure off the rear brake pedal. Be prepared, the rear tire will regain traction, and the bike might wobble. You can even use this method to practice and improve your skills. Choose a safe spot, a parking lot for example and start with low speeds.
At this moment your heart starts pounding, and your blood pressure rises. If you are not a racer and you do it just for fun things can go really dangerous, really fast. The front wheel keeps going forward, and the rear goes sideways. Releasing the rear brake at this point will be a huge mistake, a high-side crash will be imminent. The bike will snap like a raging bull kicking you in the butt.
Ways to recover
Gentle with the handlebars
You might not realize it, but you can control the slide by gently pulling the handlebar in the same direction with the slide. This way your wheels will get back in line avoiding a high-side crash. In the worst case scenario, you will experience a low-speed side crash.
The lower part of your body will help you steer the bike back on track. When learning the straight skid, it is helpful to hold the gas tank tight between your knees. It will help you a lot when encountering a slide. Your hips and a gentle pull to the exterior of the slide on the handlebar will help you control it like a pro.
Eyes on track
Try to keep your eyes focused forward; this should help you correct the slide. Fixating your view on anything else will put you down in an instant. Try to find a clear path and watch out for sand or water spots on the asphalt.
Move your weight back
It is more likely for you to encounter a skid when you are riding alone, than when you have a companion. When you ride with a passenger the chances to lock the rear are close to none. The extra weight on the back ensures a better traction of the rear wheel. Try to move a bit backward to help the rear gain traction again.