Everyone ages. It is a simple fact of life. Luckily, for most of us, as we get older we get wiser. The down side is your body doesn’t always keep up with your mind. There may be all kinds of things that you want to do but age may prevent you from being able to do them.
Riding a motorcycle is a prime example of this. If a person has ridden a bike most of their life, chances are they don’t want to stop because they have gotten a little older. What can be done to make it possible to ride, yet still be safe? There are several modifications that you can do to a motorcycle to help with this problem. Some are very costly but others are relatively inexpensive. The ones that will be discussed are the more inexpensive ones. Of course the list can go on and on but this is just a couple of them.
As you get older the motorcycles you ride will change. You probably aren’t going to be going for the ultra cool bike that you liked in your younger days. Comfort will be the bigger issue.
Modifications that make it more comfortable to ride (especially for longer rides) are what most older riders will want.
Suspension is a good place to start. While a stiff suspension is great if you are riding at high speed or want the tough guy look of a rigid frame, it is amazingly uncomfortable. By uncomfortable, imagine your kidneys taking a quick punch every time you hit a small bump.
To combat this, make sure that you have a good “soft” suspension on all 4 points. This means a shock absorber (or spring) on both sides of the front tire as well as the back. The “soft” part is the opposite of a rigid. Rigid frame motorcycles have almost no suspension. If you have a soft ride, it is like driving a Cadillac. You may not even notice the smaller bumps in the road.
Another thing that can be done is the seat. It goes along with the suspension. It helps to soften the roughness of the road. If you are taking a longer ride, your butt will thank you for having a thicker, seat with more cushion. Between the seat and the suspension, any ride will be more comfortable.
When you are young, a rigid frame with a minimalistic seat look great and show off your custom flair. As you get older, they are literally, a pain in the butt.
Most styles of motorcycles have foot pegs. These can be replaced with running boards (basically floor boards for a motorcycle). This will make the ride more comfortable because your foot isn’t on a peg. It is actually sitting on a flat surface.
While these last 2 are a little more costly, they can be worth it, especially for longer trips which older riders often take.
The first is forward mounted controls. This moves your rear brake lever and shift lever farther forward on the bike. Instead of being directly underneath you, causing you to have to sit straight up, you can extend your legs forward and lean back a little. This is another adaption that your back will thank you for.
The last one on this short list is actually for any motorcycle rider. A windshield. While feeling the wind in your hair and the open feeling of the road are hallmarks of riding, having gravel, dust, or a hard shell bug slam into your body at 60mph is not a lot of fun. A windshield will stop this. It will also serve another purpose. As the wind hits it, it will go up and over. This encases you in a bubble that is free (somewhat) of debris, cold air, and some water.
As stated earlier, the list of things you can do to a bike for older riders could go on forever. These are just a few that won’t break the bank and will let you continue your passion of having 2 wheels on the road later and later in life.
Here are few areas to start your search for your personal modifications: