Beginners Guide to Motorcycling for Women: Where to Start


Motorcycling can be an exhilarating and empowering experience for women. However, for those who are new to the sport, it can be overwhelming and intimidating. Where do you start? What do you need to know? This beginner’s guide to motorcycling for women aims to answer those questions and provide a solid foundation for those who are just starting out.

The first step in becoming a motorcyclist is to obtain a motorcycle license. This requires passing a written test and a riding test. It’s important to research the requirements in your state or country and find a reputable motorcycle training program. These programs typically provide motorcycles for students to use and teach basic riding skills, safety techniques, and traffic laws.

Once you have your license, it’s time to choose a motorcycle. There are many different types of motorcycles, each designed for a specific purpose. Factors to consider when choosing a motorcycle include your riding experience, height, weight, and the type of riding you plan to do. It’s important to take the time to research and test ride different motorcycles to find the one that is right for you.

Understanding Motorcycling

Motorcycling is an exciting and exhilarating activity that allows riders to experience the freedom of the open road. However, it can also be dangerous if proper safety precautions are not taken. It is important for beginners to understand the basics of motorcycling before they get on a bike.

The Art of Motorcycling

Riding a motorcycle is more than just operating a machine. It is an art form that requires skill, balance, and coordination. A rider must be able to control the bike with precision, especially at high speeds or in tight spaces. It takes practice and patience to master the art of motorcycling.

The History of Motorcycling

The history of motorcycling dates back to the late 19th century, when the first motorcycles were invented. Since then, motorcycles have evolved into a variety of styles and designs, from sport bikes to cruisers to touring bikes. Today, motorcycles are a popular mode of transportation and a symbol of freedom and adventure.

Two Wheels

Unlike cars, motorcycles have only two wheels, which makes them more maneuverable and agile. However, this also means that they are less stable and require more skill to operate. Riders must be aware of their balance and weight distribution at all times, especially when turning or braking.

Safety First

Safety should always be a rider’s top priority. This means wearing proper protective gear, such as a helmet, gloves, and boots, as well as following traffic laws and riding defensively. Riders should also take a motorcycle safety course to learn the basics of motorcycling and how to handle emergency situations.


Understanding the basics of motorcycling is essential for beginners, especially women who may be new to the sport. By mastering the art of motorcycling, learning about the history of motorcycles, and prioritizing safety, riders can enjoy the freedom and adventure of the open road while staying safe and confident.

Why Women Choose Motorcycling

Motorcycling has traditionally been seen as a male-dominated activity, but in recent years, more and more women are taking up the sport. In fact, one in four motorcycle riders in the United States is now a woman. So, why are women choosing to ride motorcycles?

For many women, motorcycling provides a sense of freedom and independence. Riding a motorcycle allows them to escape the stresses of daily life and experience the world in a new way. It’s also a great way to meet new people and make friends who share a common interest.

Another reason women are drawn to motorcycling is the sense of empowerment it provides. Riding a motorcycle requires skill, focus, and confidence, and mastering these skills can be incredibly rewarding. Women who ride motorcycles often report feeling more confident and self-assured in other areas of their lives as well.

Finally, many women are inspired to take up motorcycling by the stories of other female riders. There are countless examples of women who have overcome obstacles and achieved great things on two wheels, and these stories can be incredibly inspiring for women who are just starting out.

In conclusion, women choose motorcycling for a variety of reasons, including the sense of freedom and independence it provides, the empowerment that comes from mastering a new skill, and the inspiration provided by other female riders. Whatever their reasons, more and more women are discovering the joys of motorcycling and joining the ranks of female riders around the world.

Getting Started: Training and Courses

For new riders, the learning process can be daunting, but taking a motorcycle training course can make all the difference. Training courses provide a structured and safe environment for riders to learn and practice the skills necessary for safe riding.

The Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) offers a Basic RiderCourse that covers the fundamentals of motorcycle operation and safety. The course is designed for beginners and includes both classroom and on-bike instruction. Students will learn about riding gear, basic motorcycle controls, and maneuvering techniques.

In addition to the Basic RiderCourse, there are other training courses available for riders who want to further develop their skills. These courses can include advanced riding techniques, defensive riding strategies, and more.

Taking a training course not only provides valuable instruction but can also help new riders feel more confident on the road. It is important to remember that learning to ride a motorcycle is a process, and taking the time to develop the necessary skills can make all the difference in staying safe on the road.

Choosing the Right Motorcycle

When it comes to choosing the right motorcycle, there are a lot of factors to consider. Women who are just starting out may feel overwhelmed by the number of options available to them. However, with a little research and some careful consideration, it is possible to find the perfect bike.

Types of Motorcycles

There are many different types of motorcycles on the market, each with its own unique characteristics. Some of the most popular types of motorcycles include cruisers, sportbikes, standard bikes, dual-sport bikes, and dirt bikes.


Cruisers are a popular choice for many women. They are known for their comfortable riding position, low seat height, and relaxed handling. Harley-Davidson is one of the most popular cruiser brands on the market.


Sportbikes are designed for speed and agility. They are lightweight and have a powerful engine. They are not recommended for beginners, as they can be difficult to handle.


Standard bikes are a good choice for beginners. They are easy to handle and are designed for everyday use. They are a good option for commuting or weekend rides.


Dual-sport bikes are designed for both on and off-road use. They are lightweight and have a high ground clearance. They are a good choice for women who want to explore both paved and unpaved roads.

Dirt Bike

Dirt bikes are designed for off-road use. They are lightweight and have a high ground clearance. They are not recommended for beginners, as they can be difficult to handle.

Choosing a Motorcycle

When choosing a motorcycle, there are a few things to consider. These include:

  • Your riding experience
  • Your budget
  • Your riding style
  • Your physical size and strength

It is important to choose a motorcycle that is appropriate for your skill level. If you are a beginner, it is best to start with a smaller, less powerful bike. This will allow you to get comfortable with riding before moving on to a larger bike.

Your budget will also play a role in your decision. Used motorcycles are often a good choice for beginners, as they are less expensive than new bikes. However, it is important to make sure that the bike is in good condition before purchasing it.

Your riding style is also important to consider. If you plan on doing a lot of highway riding, a cruiser may be a good choice. If you plan on doing more off-road riding, a dual-sport or dirt bike may be a better option.

Finally, your physical size and strength should also be considered. It is important to choose a bike that you can comfortably handle. Make sure that you can reach the ground with both feet and that you can easily maneuver the bike.

Overall, choosing the right motorcycle requires careful consideration. By taking your riding experience, budget, riding style, and physical size and strength into account, you can find the perfect bike for your needs.

Essential Riding Gear

When it comes to starting out in motorcycling, one of the most important things to consider is safety. Essential riding gear is not only important for protection but also for comfort while riding. Here are some of the essential riding gear items that every beginner rider, specifically women, should consider:


A helmet is the most important piece of gear a rider can have. It is crucial to find a helmet that fits well and meets safety standards. Look for helmets that are DOT (Department of Transportation) or Snell certified. It is also important to choose a helmet that is comfortable and fits securely on the head.


When riding a motorcycle, it is important to dress appropriately. Clothing should be durable and provide protection in case of an accident. Leather is a popular choice for motorcycle riders as it is durable and can provide protection from road rash. Other materials such as Kevlar or Cordura can also be used. Clothing should also be comfortable and allow for freedom of movement.


Boots are an essential piece of riding gear. They should be sturdy and provide ankle support. Look for boots with a rubber sole for better grip on the foot pegs. Boots should also be comfortable and fit securely.


Gloves are important for protecting the hands while riding. They should be made of a durable material such as leather and have padding in the palms. Gloves should also fit well and allow for good grip on the handlebars.


In addition to the essential gear mentioned above, there are other pieces of protection that riders should consider. These include knee and elbow pads, chest and back protectors, and riding pants with built-in armor. These items can provide added protection in case of an accident.

Overall, essential riding gear is important for every beginner rider, specifically women, to consider. It is crucial to find gear that fits well, is comfortable, and provides adequate protection while riding a motorcycle.

Motorcycle Safety and Riding Skills

When it comes to motorcycling, safety should always be a top priority. Riding a motorcycle can be a thrilling experience, but it can also be dangerous if proper precautions are not taken. Here are some tips for staying safe on the road:

  • Always wear a helmet that meets safety standards. A helmet can help protect your head in the event of an accident.
  • Wear protective clothing, such as leather or Kevlar gear, to help protect your body in case of a fall.
  • Make sure your motorcycle is in good working order before each ride. Check the brakes, tires, and lights to ensure everything is functioning properly.
  • Follow traffic laws and practice defensive driving. Be aware of your surroundings and anticipate potential hazards.
  • Take a motorcycle safety course to improve your riding skills and learn how to handle emergency situations.

In addition to safety, developing good riding skills is also important for a safe and enjoyable riding experience. Here are some tips for improving your riding skills:

  • Practice slow-speed maneuvers, such as turning and weaving, in a safe and open area.
  • Learn how to properly shift gears and brake. Smooth and controlled movements can help prevent accidents.
  • Practice emergency stops and swerves to prepare for unexpected situations on the road.
  • Be aware of your body position and weight distribution while riding. Proper posture and balance can help improve control of the motorcycle.
  • Consider taking an advanced riding course to further improve your skills and knowledge.

Remember, riding a motorcycle can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it is important to prioritize safety and develop good riding skills. Always wear proper safety gear and follow traffic laws to ensure a safe and enjoyable ride.

Understanding Motorcycle Maintenance

Maintenance is a crucial aspect of owning a motorcycle. Proper maintenance ensures that the motorcycle runs smoothly, lasts longer, and is safe to ride. It is essential to understand the basics of motorcycle maintenance to keep your bike in top condition. Here are a few tips to get you started:

Regular Maintenance Checks

Regular maintenance checks are essential to keep your motorcycle in good condition. These checks include:

  • Checking the oil level and changing the oil regularly
  • Checking the tire pressure and tread depth
  • Checking the brake pads and replacing them if they are worn
  • Checking the chain tension and lubricating the chain
  • Checking the battery and charging it if necessary

Engine Maintenance

The engine is the heart of your motorcycle, and it is essential to maintain it properly. Here are some tips to keep your engine running smoothly:

  • Change the oil regularly
  • Check the air filter and clean or replace it if necessary
  • Check the spark plugs and replace them if they are worn
  • Keep the carburetor clean and adjust it as necessary

Cleaning and Storage

Cleaning your motorcycle regularly will help keep it in good condition. Here are some tips for cleaning and storing your motorcycle:

  • Wash your motorcycle with soap and water, and dry it thoroughly
  • Use a protectant to prevent rust and corrosion
  • Store your motorcycle in a dry, cool place, away from direct sunlight

By following these basic maintenance tips, you can keep your motorcycle running smoothly and safely. Remember to always refer to your owner’s manual for specific maintenance instructions for your motorcycle.

Insurance and Legal Aspects

When it comes to motorcycling, insurance and legal aspects are important factors to consider. As a beginner, it’s crucial to understand the insurance requirements and legal obligations before hitting the road.


Insurance is a must-have for any motorcyclist. It provides financial protection in case of an accident, theft, or damage to your bike. As a beginner, it’s important to shop around for insurance quotes and compare coverage options.

Here are a few things to consider when choosing motorcycle insurance:

  • Liability coverage: This is mandatory in most states and covers damages to other people’s property or injuries they sustain in an accident you caused.
  • Collision coverage: This covers damages to your bike in case of a collision with another vehicle or object.
  • Comprehensive coverage: This covers damages to your bike caused by theft, vandalism, or natural disasters.
  • Medical payments coverage: This covers medical expenses for you and your passenger in case of an accident.

Legal Aspects

As a motorcyclist, you are subject to the same traffic laws and regulations as other motorists. It’s important to understand the legal aspects of riding a motorcycle to avoid fines and legal trouble.

Here are a few legal aspects to keep in mind:

  • Licensing: To legally ride a motorcycle, you need a valid motorcycle license or endorsement. Check your state’s requirements for obtaining a motorcycle license.
  • Helmet laws: Some states require all motorcyclists to wear helmets, while others only require helmets for certain riders. Make sure to check your state’s helmet laws before hitting the road.
  • Traffic laws: Follow all traffic laws and regulations, including speed limits, lane changes, and signaling.
  • Insurance requirements: Most states require motorcyclists to have liability insurance. Make sure to carry proof of insurance with you at all times.

By understanding the insurance and legal aspects of motorcycling, you can ride confidently and safely.

Motorcycling in Different Scenarios

When it comes to motorcycling, there are different scenarios that riders may encounter. It is important for beginners to be aware of these scenarios and how to handle them to ensure their safety on the road.

Riding in the Rain

Riding in the rain can be challenging for any rider, especially for beginners. It is important to have the right gear, such as a waterproof jacket and pants, gloves, and boots. It is also important to slow down and increase the distance between other vehicles. Avoid sudden braking or acceleration, as this can cause the tires to lose traction. Additionally, be careful when turning or changing lanes, as the roads may be slippery.


Touring on a motorcycle can be a great way to explore new places and enjoy the scenery. It is important to plan the route ahead of time and make sure to take breaks to avoid fatigue. Pack light and make sure to distribute the weight evenly on the motorcycle. It is also important to check the weather forecast and be prepared for any changes in weather conditions.


Racing on a motorcycle can be exhilarating, but it is important to remember that safety should always come first. Make sure to wear the appropriate safety gear, including a full-face helmet, leather suit, gloves, and boots. It is also important to have proper training and experience before attempting to race. Always follow the rules and regulations of the race track and be aware of other riders on the track.

Different Scenarios

There are many different scenarios that riders may encounter while motorcycling, such as riding on winding roads, in heavy traffic, or on highways. It is important to be aware of these scenarios and to adjust riding techniques accordingly. Always maintain a safe distance from other vehicles, be aware of blind spots, and use turn signals when changing lanes or turning.

In conclusion, being aware of different scenarios and how to handle them is crucial for beginner riders. With the right gear, training, and experience, riders can enjoy the thrill of motorcycling while also ensuring their safety on the road.

The Motorcycle Community

The motorcycle community is a vibrant and diverse group of people who share a passion for riding. Women riders are a growing part of this community, and there are many resources available to help them get started.

One great resource is the Harley-Davidson Riding Academy, which offers courses for beginners and experienced riders alike. The courses cover everything from basic riding skills to advanced techniques, and are taught by experienced instructors.

Another great resource is the Women Riders Now (WRN) website, which is dedicated to providing information and resources for women who ride. The site features articles, reviews, and forums where women can connect with other riders and share their experiences.

The Harley-Davidson Motor Company is also committed to supporting women riders, and has a number of initiatives aimed at promoting the sport among women. These include sponsoring women’s motorcycle events and supporting women’s motorcycle clubs.

Overall, the motorcycle community is a welcoming and supportive place for women who are interested in riding. With the right resources and support, anyone can become a confident and skilled rider.

Additional Resources for New Riders

When starting out in motorcycling, it can be overwhelming to navigate all the information available. Fortunately, there are many resources available to help new riders get started and feel confident on the road.

Comprehensive Guides

One of the best ways to learn about motorcycling is through comprehensive guides. These guides cover everything from basic riding skills to advanced techniques, safety tips, and maintenance advice. Some popular guides include “Total Control” by Lee Parks and “Proficient Motorcycling” by David L. Hough.

Questions and Concerns

If you have questions or concerns about motorcycling, there are many online forums and communities where you can connect with experienced riders. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation also offers courses and resources specifically for new riders.

Tips and Tricks

There are many tips and tricks that can help new riders feel more comfortable on their bikes. For example, practicing slow-speed maneuvers in a parking lot can help build confidence and improve balance. Additionally, wearing the right gear, such as a helmet and protective clothing, can make a big difference in safety and comfort.

Products and Prices

When it comes to gear and accessories, there are many options available at a variety of price points. It’s important to invest in quality gear that will provide adequate protection in the event of a crash. Some popular brands include Alpinestars, Dainese, and REV’IT!.

Business and News

There are many businesses and organizations that cater specifically to the motorcycling community. For example, motorcycle dealerships often offer classes and events for new riders. Additionally, there are many online publications that cover the latest news and trends in the world of motorcycling.


Finally, many riders enjoy listening to music while they ride. However, it’s important to be aware of the risks associated with wearing headphones or earbuds while riding. Some riders prefer to use speakers mounted on their bikes or wear earplugs with built-in speakers for a safer listening experience.