So you want to learn to ride a motorcycle…

Maybe you’ve just finished one of the books on the topic of rising oil and gas prices and think it’s time to look into a more economical means of transportation.  Perhaps you’ve just finished watching Mad Max The Road Warrior on Blu-ray and figure you’ll have the best chance for apocolyptic survival if you can ride a Kawasaki Z1000 (But please don’t lock the rear brake at high speed mmmkay)?  Perhaps, like me, you have gotten hooked on the idea by a great documentary series like: Long Way Round. Or maybe for any of a number of reasons you’ve decided you’re ready!  You yearn to experience the freedom of travel, the excitement of speed, and the bonds of friendship that motorcycling can bring:

It is important to know that by successfully completing either Team Oregon’s BRT or the Motorcycle Safety Foundations BRC, you’ll get to waive either the written or riding DMV test, OR BOTH!  These courses also have much more to offer you in the way of training and exercises than you would likely get on your own or from a friend (plus, for a nominal fee, you get the convenience of dropping one of their bikes instead of your friend’s)! 😉

Do make sure that you check with your local DMV, as some states do not accept BRT or BRC certifications from other states!

As an Oregonian, the MSF course is not offered since Team Oregon was founded from an MSF core with Oregon Department of Transportation, and the MSF courses in this state were replaced with Team Oregon versions.

Also note that while the Oregon DMV lists the MSF certification as acceptable at this site for active military personnel:

http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/DMV/driverid/military_personnel_driver.shtml

it does not list it on the primary page as an acceptable source:

http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/DMV/driverid/motorcycle.shtml

So which should you choose? Well in this case, it really simply depends on what is offered in your state. Both courses offer very similar material, and there may be issues using course completion certifications from a course in another state.

  • Both will cost you around $200
  • Both will take up about 2.5 days of your time
  • Both offer helmets and bikes to use in the course
  • Both will give you a taste of what it is like to ride a motorcycle for a nominal fee
  • Both have the potential to get you certified to legally ride a street bike in your state

Team Oregon BRT

Motorcycle Safety Foundation BRC

When you finish your training and start looking to buy that first bike, I would highly recommend talking to local riders, and review sites like Best Beginner Motorcycles to help determine what type and size of bike might be most appropriate for you. I would further suggest a couple of follow up books that I’ve found interesting and useful:

Whichever course you find best suits your needs, learn well, be safe and have fun!