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Survival Skills Newsletter – same content, new day!

Welcome to the latest edition of the Survival Skills Rider Training newsletter. You’ll notice it’s arrived a day earlier in your inbox – and it will now cover posts running Thursday to Wednesday (although this one also has last week’s catch-up links).

Why the change? Well, last Friday I sent out a message questioning whether it was worth persevering with the newsletter for two reasons. Firstly, the sign up rate hadn’t been great – out of 6,500 followers on FB, just 70-odd people are taking the newsletter. Secondly, many people aren’t even opening it and I don’t want to add to the inbox clutter by sending out another email no-one reads.

But I got a surprising amount of support. So I did a bit of research about the best time to send out a newsletter and Friday got the thumbs-down. So here we are, on a different day. But as before, I won’t fill up the space with spam, random ads or product placement, just links to my posts of Facebook. Survival Skills is all about helping you improve your knowledge, your skills, and your understanding of ‘better biking’.

TRAINING – of course, I do gain my income from post-test rider training courses, so I will remind you that with the sun shining (sort of) and temperatures having soared (well, we can dream) it’s still a great time to book an on-road course from my Ride4Fun and Ride2Work range. With the long evenings we can train in the evenings too. I still have some availability for July and I’m now taking bookings into August. And of course, I’m also available for ONLINE COACHING sessions immediately.


READ ONE THING – if you’re pushed for time, have a look at the “When did Suzuki give up on bikes” article. It’s a look at why one of the Japanese ‘Big Four’ are now outsold by Lexmoto and Royal Enfield.

SCIENCE OF BEING SEEN – I only realised after I’d set the date for last Wednesday’s LIVE online Science Of Being Seen (SOBS) presentation that there was a clash with one of the Euros semi-finals. And predictably, it was the one England ended up playing in. So I know there were several people who wanted to watch but were double booked. So here’s another chance to catch the LIVE presentation that was used as the third module by most Biker Down teams IN FULL and UPDATED. Here’s the booking link:


Depending on interest, I’ll probably deliver SOBS every two months, with a talk on another biking topic every alternate month. And a thank you to everyone who looked in for last week’s talk. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive

ONLINE PRESENTATIONS – I have several dates in the diary for talks to CLUBS & GROUPS. If you’d like me to arrange something for your own, get in touch. As well as the ‘Science Of Being Seen’ and ‘Crash Course (as in “how not to…”) presentations, I have a selection of others on various riding issues.

Ko-Fi – is my online resource for the old Facebook articles. Right now, there are over 500 articles in total on the site. Sign up as a SUPPORTER from as little as £3!


*** ELEVENSES *** Wed 14 July Elevenses 154

In today’s live webcast… SNP MP charged with dangerous driving after crash involving motorcyclist… Nigerian rider takes his work home with him and ends up in jail… two new commuter options from Zero and BMW compared… Suzuki’s GSX-S950 – a big bike option for new A2 riders… in today’s better biking tip – is dehydration a problem on a bike? You betcha!… See more

*** TIPS ON TUESDAY *** Some QuickTips from Adrian Pt 3

For the last coupe of weeks, I’ve been expanding on some tips sent in by Adrian. Here’s his third and final tip. Many of you may say “well, that’s nothing new” but that doesn’t make it any less importan… See more

*** COMMENT *** Are bikers ready to learn?

It’s an unfortunate state of affairs but something I’ve learned (and then re-learned!) the hard way is that when riders report a crash, usually the last thing they want to hear is any kind of advice about how they might have avoided it.

It doesn’t matter how well-meaning, how sympathetically phrased, how objective the advice is, when someone says “I don’t understand why…”…Continue reading

*** TRAINING *** Out enjoying the evening roads

Although I’ve been offering evening training courses for many years, I’ve always been a bit surprised so few riders book them up, particularly as riders are quite happy to head off on a ride out in the evening sun and relatively empty roads!

Right now, we have daylight until after 9pm, so it’s quite possible to start as late as 7pm and still get a good two hours riding in. …Watch the video clip

*** ELEVENSES *** Sun 1 July Elevenses 153

In today’s live webcast… motorsport ‘saved’ as EU Commission reverses direction on insurance rules… former delivery driver clocks up twenty six tickets from same temporary speed limit cameras… UK June sales figures up year-on-year… worldwide sales look to bounce back from 2020… Valerio Bono clocks up another long distance world record… in today’s better biking tip – what’s the difference between reading the road and a ri… See more

*** SKILLS ON SATURDAY *** How to avoid #2… mid-corner hazards

Over the next couple of weeks we’ll look at some of the errors that catch riders out in corners and… how to avoid them. Last time out it was the bend that tightens up, this time I’ll look at another cornering trip-up – the surface.

On the track, the racer’s goal is quite simple. To complete a lap in the minimum possible time, by exploiting every bit of grip that the surface can deliver. There’s an assumption t… Continue reading

*** FOCUS ON FRIDAY *** Why are bikers resistant to coaching?

Last week, I looked at a widespread assumption within the riding community that an inexperienced rider can learn by “following riders who know what they are doing”.

Riders are often very helpful folk and usually protective of new riders. So perhaps it wasn’t too surprisingly that when I suggested elsewhere that this ‘monkey see, monkey do’ approach isn’t actually a good teaching or learning technique, I got a bit … Continue reading

*** COMMENT *** When did Suzuki give up on bikes?

Have a look at this list – it’s the number of new registrations of motorcycles and scooters in the UK for May 2021.

Honda 2,392
Yamaha 1,717… Continue reading

*** ELEVENSES *** Wed 7 July Elevenses 152

In today’s live webcast… reminder – escape the footie with the Science Of Being Seen @8 pm tonight… Norton declare faulty V4SS unfixable… EU agrees to drop green card requirement for UK riders and drivers… DVSA seeking to recruit over 300 examiners to reduce waiting times… Halfords launch petition to legalise all e-scooters as three more boroughs join London trial… Suzuki launch 2021 GSX-S750 at budget price… today’s di… See more

*** TIPS ON TUESDAY *** Some QuickTips from Adrian Pt 2

I got a message a few weeks back from Adrian who kindly offered some some of his own ‘better biking’ hints – and good ones they are too! Last week I ran Adrian’s first tip, with some comments of my own to supplement Adrian’s observations, and here’s his second.

“2. Dual carriageway. You’re in the right lane. In the left lane just ahead of you, 3 cars close together. Number 3 is very close to car Number 2. Chances ar… Continue reading

*** TRAINING *** What can Survival Skills do for you?

Here are some answers, but not from me but from some trainees who’ve taken courses over the years, ranging from newly qualified and returning riders, up to pretty darned experienced and competent. Continue reading

*** ELEVENSES *** Sun 4 July Elevenses 151

In today’s live webcast… rider pulls gun on Texas driver and is shot dead… Pakistani riders beat off leopard attack with a cake… rider pulled up in Hull for carrying bike frame strapped to his back… Former Jaguar Land Rover boss is new TVS CEO… atudents from Warwick reveal their Norton-based TT racer… MT-09 latest makeover isn’t pretty… nor is the Xianglong JXS500i… today’s better biking tip – long distance commuter o… See more

*** SKILLS ON SATURDAY *** How to avoid #1… tightening corners

Over the next couple of weeks we’ll look at some of the errors that catch riders out in corners, and… how to avoid them. Let’s start with the decreasing radius corner, or the bend that tightens up on you as you go round it.

There are plenty of bends like that, and for two different reasons…. Continue reading


Please Please PLEASE pass on the newsletter to biking family and friends. Let’s get everyone we know ‘better biking’.


Kevin Williams is a 40-year veteran in writing and speaking on motorcycle riding. He has some very interesting views and an immense depth of knowledge on advanced riding. He publishes a video broadcast at 11am on Sundays and Wednesdays. Tips-on-Tuesday and Skills-on-Saturday posts on Facebook. He has given us permission to share his a newsletter with SAM Club members each Friday. He also produces monthly webinars. Also, he has published a number of book and has an archive of almost 500 articles for reference. If you have been on a ‘Biker Down’ course, you will have seen his ‘Science of Being Seen’ presentation that was incorporated when the Biker Down course was created by Kent Fire and Rescue.

Some SAM members have been having problems in accessing the FREE material Kevin publishes for ALL bikers. If you’re not a Facebook fan, you can find his material at on his articles page on the website. This is a website for ‘creative people’ to sell their goods directly to the public. All Kevin’s articles are FREE to ALL bikers for 60 days. After which time they are archived and you can access them for a month at a cost of £3. If you are a ‘thinking biker’ interested in ways of helping yourself and other to improve their riding, or simply find out how someone else thinks it should be done, it’s a real bargain.

Kevin’s publishes very informative and entertaining motorcycle riding videos on his YouTube channel. Definitrely worth a watch!