What I'm about to relate might seem obvious to the more experienced guys out there, but it might be of some help to new riders or those getting back into riding after a long lay-off (like me). Over the past couple of months, I've posted several whining messages along the lines of "my bike feels funny" and questions about suspension setup. It all began when I started to use my new DRZ-S for commuting to work and became concerned about the bike's on-road manners. I was convinced there was something wrong and I've spent hours checking and re-checking tyre pressures, wheel bearings and chain tension and fiddling with the suspension. Last weekend I found the cause, and it wasn't what I expected. In reply to one of my early messages, some sage person wrote "are you sure it's not you're ass that's loose?" I started thinking about that and when I went out on the bike and I made a concious effort to relax, enjoy the bike and try to ride as smoothly as possible. Suddenly, the bike felt solid and sharp and the perceived handling problems disappeared. It turns out that my ass wasn't loose, it was too tight (yes, I was being a tight-ass). A DRZ isn't a 'blade or a 'busa, it's a trail bike with over 10" of suspension travel and semi-knobbly tyres. There's no way it's going to handle as well as a sports bike on the road and if you ride it hard, tarmac seams, diesel spills etc. ARE going to cause you minor (and maybe major) dramas from time to time. When you realize this and that fact that by sitting rigidly on the bike with your hands gripping the bars so tight your knuckles hurt you're actually making your own life more difficult (and dangerous), only then can you start to chill out and just RIDE the thing, dammit. Exactly the same thing applies off-road, only more so. Even on the relatively tame terrain that my abilities limit me too at the moment, I'm spending more time on the pegs rather than sitting down paddling wildly. Like I said, this is no doubt laughable to most of you but I had to share my revelation and it'll hopefully help some other dual-sport novice.