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Hello, long time lurker and now dirt bike owner!  (Mod: please move to appropriate forum if this is in wrong area)

My 13 year old son kept asking for a dirt bike to ride with friends.  After much hand wringing and talking the boss (mom) into it, we are now owners of a Honda CRF125 (son) & CRF150 (mom and dad).  I grew up riding quads like 400ex, and streetbikes.  I was fairly nuts and a moderate to good rider in my youth.

Wow, dirt bikes are a different experience altogether and much harder to adjust to than I thought.  I have a complete new respect for those who ride dirt bikes well, and motocross/enduro in general.  

I have done the research and watched video after video, my question to this community is this.  Real world, what advice do you have for teaching my son good habits and experiences? And by proxy mom and dad.  I'm only talking light riding and beginner advice. Trail riding and dirt roads, nothing crazy.  Just tips and real world advice and things you learned along your journey.

We have full protective gear and the bikes, now we just need the experience to make memories as a family.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.  

I'll leave it with one experience I've had already. Unloaded the bikes once I got home.  I jumped on the 125 and proceeded to teach my son the basics.  Clutch, shift pattern, brakes, stance, choke, gas, etc.  I then revved her up to show them (whole family + neighbors) how to start - yup, got cocky and whiskey throttled it throwing me on my butt and barely missing my Jeep.  Bruised ego and replaced broken clutch lever later, all was well and my son took to a clutch like a fish out of water!  ?

We are located in Valdosta, Ga.  Looking forward to finding riders and places to ride around us.

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Remove the silencer plug before attempting to start a bike!

But seriously.. just go out as much as possible and put the hours in to learn to ride. First hand experience is invaluable and way more useful than anything you can read. Trial and error is the best tool (atleast for me). Where abouts do you live? You can always post in a region specific forum to look for fellow riders! Good luck to you and yours :)

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69fastback, we live a couple miles from SGMP.  You are correct, great place for drag racing.  ?

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Good on ya for letting him get involved and you joining as well! Some of my absolute favorite experiences with my kids revolved around dirt bike adventures. Our son did his first top end build at 10 years old with me watching and our daughter got her first bike for her 5th Christmas. Good times!

I recommend getting him (and you) working on slow riding skills, think balancing games. Speed will come on it's own and there's nothing better than being fluid in nasty terrain using slow riding skills. Developing good habits early are also very important, constant reminders of being aware of surroundings and keeping his head on a swivel to keep up with ever changing dangers. Teaching him to do his own maintenance will also teach him a respect  for his machine and provides a valuable life skill. Most of all, Dad, keep it fun and enjoy your time together, they grow up quick! :ride:

 

 

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Edited by Jrs Turn

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I started out when I was 9 on a little 70cc beater. My uncle and father literally got me rolling in an alfalfa field and let go... I ran till I ran out of gas... If he can ride a mountain bike, he can ride a dirt bike. As you well know, from riding yourself, the clutch is the hardest part. Just hammer the clutch lessons over and over and over and teach proper shifting. Slow and steady wins the race. I learned about the clutch real quick when I popped my first wheelie and nearly pooped my drawers. Let him become more daring and aggressive at his own pace. My dad never pushed me to do anything unsafe or anything I wasn't comfortable doing. I grew up on trails and dirt roads in WA. They taught me the clutch. I taught myself everything else at my pace. These days, I ride so fast I don't take in the scenery anymore .

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5 hours ago, OlGertyBastard said:



But seriously.. just go out as much as possible and put the hours in to learn to ride. First hand experience is invaluable and way more useful than anything you can read. Trial and error is the best tool (atleast for me). 

^ ^ This.  

After a 20 layoff from dirtbikes I bought one for myself and my 2 boys 12 years ago. Today my youngest (24) can kick his dad's ass on occasion - his dad is very proud.

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