Road Goddess

Guide

 
Features

April-June 2009  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Road Goddess Guide

Mind

Photo credit: Luiz Baltar

Mind Before Motorcycle

The spring riding season is upon us. It’s time to reconnect with ourselves and the road. Remember that your journey begins in your mind before your motorcycle. Proper mental preparation and planning is the key to a successful road trip, whether it is a quick day jaunt or a long week of touring. One important key principle to keep in mind is never plan a trip that is beyond your own mental and physical abilities or above your bike’s performance capacity. This principle alone is a guiding element in your safety and the well-being of others around you. So tune up your mind with these helpful reminders, to enable an enjoyable journey:

~ Decide what your mental riding limits are. How far have you traveled at one excursion in the past? Were you mentally fatigued or invigorated? This will allow you to judge the distance of your next trip.

~ Once you decide the length of your trip, the next course of action is your travel plans. This will get you into the “ride” state of mind. Where will you go and what will you do? Research your adventure, check the weather, purchase a map and get a good grip of your route. Knowing these details will ease your mind and give you a vision of your path.

~ A basic set of biker essentials should be kept on your motorcycle at all times for any kind of trek. These essentials include: tool bag for basic repair, cell phone, bottle of water, energy bar, rain gear, flashlight, and first aid kit. But pack accordingly for the details of your own trip; it may be a longer journey where you will need to bring items important for you such as medications, extra pair of glasses or camping gear.

~ Inspect your motorcycle for any needed repairs or maintenance. If your bike has spent the winter months in hibernation, it is a good idea to check all the fluids, cables and lights (and of course, don’t forget to check the tire pressure). If you are not comfortable doing this yourself or you find something odd, take it to a professional who can do the troubleshooting for you.

~ Go with your gut. Last but not least, listen to your instincts. Whether you are on or off the road, if something doesn’t quite sit right with you…do not do it! This could be anything…like not stopping at a certain gas station or deciding to take another road than the original one planned. Many a moto gal has been spared an odd experience or some chance trouble just by listening to her woman’s intuition.

 

Body

Hearing Loss

photo credit: Cheryl Rawlings/ photo artwork by Cara Mae

Factoids:

*Over 35 million Americans have a significant hearing loss. That’s more than 1 in 8 individuals — based on a U.S. population of 270 million. (Better Hearing Institute MarkeTrak VII)

*According to O.S.H.A., sounds at 90 decibels or above, by law, require hearing protection. For example, normal talking (55 dBA), lawn mower (95 dBA) motorcycle riding (112 dBA), wind noise (well over 100 dBA), rock concerts, headsets, car stereos and surround sound in movie theaters can climb between 120 and 140 dBA.

*About 80 percent of those diagnosed with hearing loss do not seek help. The reason is usually denial, lack of awareness or embarrassment. (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association)

To put it simply, when your hearing is gone, it’s gone. There is no way to bring it back. Amongst motorcyclists, wind noise is the leading cause of hearing loss due to long distance riding at highway speeds where the wind is constant and loud. The good news is that hearing loss can be prevented. The first step is to wear a properly fitted helmet that is at least a ¾ shell which will reduce the noise level by about 3 dBA. Second, invest in some ear plugs. The ear plugs will block the wind noise and actually enable you to hear better at high speeds. If you don’t like the way earplugs feel you may prefer to use a bit of cotton instead. Remember, hearing loss increases over time and doesn’t go away, protect your ears!

 

Soul

Feed your inner spirit:

Yatra is the Sanskrit word for sacred journey. It is one of the most ancient spiritual practices that a person may choose to do so they may experience a revelation or vision.

The Motorcycle Monk: Ven. Kusala Bhikshu

photo credit Ven. Kusala Bhikshu

Ven. Kusala Bhikshu, a Buddhist monk, traveled 5,000 miles cross-country on his 2001 Suzuki Volusia to see if the Dharma was any different on a motorcycle. Here are some of his enlightening insights:

~~~

“I was 52 and felt I needed to do something special. Being a Buddhist monk is one kind of challenge, a 5000 mile motorcycle road trip is another. It was a mid-life thing, I suppose. What is life really all about? Is it more important to be something, or to do something? The teachings of the Buddha gave me one answer, and I thought a motorcycle road trip would give me another. As it turns out, the truth found in the Dharma (Buddhism) and the truth you find on the road is pretty much the same thing.”

~~~

“Moments of perfection were in sharp contrast to the heat, cold, and rain. Because of the contrast; when perfection did happen ‘WOW!’ I said to myself on more than one occasion, ‘it just can't get any better than this.’ And yet, it always did: the colors, smells, and sounds moved me, not to think, but to that place deep inside where words have no meaning. Where time comes to a complete stop and space is forever. The place where all things are connected and fear can't exist, because you are no longer separate.”

~~~

“It's a challenge to find comfort on a motorcycle if you're looking outside yourself... The comfort a motorcycle rider finds is on the inside...with acceptance of the way things are, and faith in his/her riding skills and motorcycle.”

~~~


“A lot, for instance is… wherever you go, there you are. Your baggage travels with you. A change of place doesn't necessarily change the space inside your head. You suffer a lot more when you want things to be different than they are. My road trip began and ended in the very same place…inside myself. I really didn't go anywhere, but what a journey!”

http://www.urbandharma.org/kusala/revkus/motorcycleqa.html

*Disclaimer/Legal notice: This advice and content are provided for entertainment purposes only, and as such, they come with no guarantee of accuracy or usability of the information and advice contained within. Read at your own risk! Use of this web site constitutes your understanding and acceptance that the owners and author's have no control over external advertising and external websites/links and thus is in no way responsible for the information or links contained in external links. We do not accept responsibility for typographical errors, html coding errors, lost, or orphan html web pages.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




 


 

        

 

 
 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                     
 

 

 

 

 
 

 

 

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