Watch for danger signs
The real problem in battling fatigue is a lapse in concentration. It’s tempting to think that you can go just a little bit further, but the more tired you become the more likely you are to crash. Eight per cent of all fatal motorcycle crashes in NSW involve a fatigued motorcycle rider. Danger signs include:
- Running a bit wide on a corner
- A couple of rough gear changes
- Not seeing a sign
- Dry mouth
- Stiff joints (neck, knees and wrists)
Riding a motorcycle is far more physically and mentally demanding than driving a car. Rider fatigue is more likely to be a response to physical and mental exhaustion. Fatigue may also be increased by exposure to hot and cold weather, noise and buffeting from strong winds and dehydration. Tiredness before the journey is also a major issue contributing to fatigue.
- Ensure you start your journey well rested, with a good night's sleep.
- Drink lots of water – fruit juice and sports drinks are OK in limited quantities. Avoid too much coffee or sweet soft drinks and stay away from alcohol.
- Eat small amounts frequently, simple snacks like fruit, nuts, a muesli bar or even a little chocolate. Avoid fatty foods and large meals before or during a long ride.
- In winter, don’t make yourself too snug and warm. It’s good to be a little cool.
- Even if you are not tired, stop about every one and a half hours or 150 kilometres. Riding takes more concentration than driving.