Jump to content
BMWSportTouring
beemerman2k

Does your mind wander when you ride?

Recommended Posts

beemerman2k

I love to think. And for some reason, motorcycling puts me in a very contemplative mood. My mind wanders from my children to my riding life to maybe issues of the day--interrupted by some stupid near accident--now I'm contemplating where people's minds are when they're operating a motor vehicle and why they aren't paying attention :smile:

 

Trying to make efforts to NOT allow my mind to wander as sometimes I'll come back to earth and wonder how long I've been gone. If I end up T-Boning a truck, no brakes, no nuthing, you'll know what happened. My usual meditation was abruptly interrupted :cry:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
szurszewski

I saw your post this morning and spent some time thinking it over while out for a ride - which maybe answers your question and maybe it doesn't.

 

If I do feel my mind wandering, which is sort of casting about without direction, I try to rein it back in so I don't get distracted and miss something critical (as you alluded); if I can't rein in back in, it's time for a break at least, or time to park the bike and meditate over beers or bourbons.

 

On the other hand, I find a ride a great place to think things through - as I was doing this morning. I was always that kid in class who had a damnable time paying attention to the teacher. I did and do love to read and learn, and in general I liked school (went on to be become a teacher even), but it was really hard to focus - I probably had/have ADD/ADHD or some such thing, but they hadn't gotten round to that when I was a kid - they were still stuck with deciding we all had asthma.

 

Eventually, I figured out if was doing something that required a different kind of thought, I could focus on a lecture/demonstration/discussion much better. So, I'd doodle or read something mindless while listening or do something else like that - this actually kept my mind from wandering (if I wasn't doing something like that, god knows where my thoughts would end up).

 

Riding does the same thing for me - it sort of clears away the distractions and lets me focus on my thoughts. Now, this only applies if the riding isn't very technical - if it is, that's enough for my little brain to handle alone. If I DON'T want to ponder something serious while riding, I'll put on some music - I find that's a good balance as it lets me just ride without "having" to be too introspective.

 

Once I get into a city or somewhere like that, come upon a bunch of traffic or other weirdness, the music or pondering gets put on pause.

 

Surprised you haven't had any other replies - maybe everyone else is out thinking ;)

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
lawnchairboy

Depends on the type of riding. Superslabbing I'm usually listening to a book. Technical or at higher speeds I'm tuned in to the ride +\- audio entertainment.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Bud

Without any facts other than this: Motorcycle rear ends a car that was turning off the highway into their driveway.

 

Makes one wonder about what was occupying the riders mind.

 

OTOH

 

My mind is rarely 100% focused on anything. Percentage increases as the level of complexity of the ride changes. Chasing Bernie? as close to 100% as I get. Wandering around the countryside near my home, not so much.

 

I remember the first time I drove the family car on a trip. I had a million things to keep track of all at once. Now, I can drive the car 2 hours without much effort. Most of our driving is on autopilot (the mind that is, it takes care of such things as noticing if there is an object large enough to be a threat or we can just ignore) and that's why drivers are telling the truth when they say I just didn't see you.

 

When driving the car, I'm more aware of motorcycles because I ride.

 

We can all improve our riding abilities.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
beemerman2k

Rode home from Boston this evening with the sun very low in the sky and not a cloud in sight. Burned my eyeballs clean off--or so it felt. Had on sunglasses and the sun visor on my Schuberth C3 Pro was down (best feature of this helmet!) Nonetheless, with the sun blaring in my face and the faces of every car around me, I found it not a challenge at all to focus on the ride.

 

So I'm coming to the conclusion that when imminent threats are perceived to be absent, the mind feels free to entertain other thoughts, like the new Star Trek show on tonight or the NFL protests or North Korea or Aristotilian philosophy and it's application towards photography :smile:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
RT5HTP

Interesting topic. For me as well, it depends on the riding situation/scenario. I just came off a long distance ride where I spent 10 + hours/day on the saddle for multiple days. I did a lot of thinking. Thoughts ranged from family, work, health...the gammut. When I was in the middle of nowhere(no traffic, fewer cars, fewer intersections), I tend to "think" more and possibly listen to music via my Schuberth C3 Pro. During dawn/dusk, I am hyperalert and on the look out for deer/wildlife. It's all in the context. I also tend to soak in my surroundings and look for good pictures to capture. As a side note- I agree about the sun shield being a great feature of the C3 Pro, but if that were anti-fog like the clear visor, that would be spectacular!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Joe Frickin' Friday
So I'm coming to the conclusion that when imminent threats are perceived to be absent, the mind feels free to entertain other thoughts, like the new Star Trek show on tonight or the NFL protests or North Korea or Aristotilian philosophy and it's application towards photography :smile:

 

That's kind of where I'm at. If I'm on interstate highways, I'll have the iPod piping music into my head, and if I'm not specifically listening to the music, my mind is probably pondering some imponderable thing.

 

That is, if there's no traffic in my immediate vicinity. If there is, I'm paying attention to that.

 

If I'm off of the interstate, then it's likely that:

 

A) I'm headed to a very nearby destinatation, or

 

B) these are the roads I came here to ride on.

 

In either of those cases, the music is off, and I'm dividing my attention between the road and the scenery, with the allocation dependent on how sporty the riding is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tallman

See my signature line...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lone_RT_rider
In either of those cases, the music is off, and I'm dividing my attention between the road and the scenery, with the allocation dependent on how sporty the riding is.

 

Or how far off your Six I actually am. ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
TN_R11_Girl

Just had an interesting experience

With this question myself... had several things come into play affecting my schedule shortly before heading out on thee bike. Realized about 15 minutes in that I was NOT riding well and that my brain had focused on issues that I would be dealing with when I got home. Had to consciously focus on the technical part of my riding to push the rest of the stuff aside.

 

But normally, I do a meditation exercise while riding... acknowledge the thought/idea and then let it slide by.

 

I prefer the second methodology by far 😊

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Living the Dream

Multi-task, mind wanders while still enjoying the ride, while I always have music playing, thinking about changes at work, dealing with that moron, car changing lanes in front of me, how can I fund the bathroom and bedroom re-model without financing, when am I going to lay the tile i both of my garages, tight turn up ahead, what angle will I lay that tile, a little hot/lean farther, meh let the wife decide the angle, . Muscle memory works and as you see the traffic, a curve, an obstacle, you don't necessarily have to stop your current train of thought, just let your training and muscle memory take effect. Even on unfamiliar territory, it's just a matter of adjusting to the terrain, do you really have to concentrate on the ride or do you just enjoy the ride.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×