If you see anyone doing some of the following, no they’re not having a John Travolta disco moment in their seat, they’re trying to communicate something to you. Hand signals are important for group riding and other uses, e.g., your electrics may be on the blink, or you’re warning oncoming vehicles or your riding buddy.
Most are common sense and some of us already know them, but hey, easy to forget when not regularly used.
The palm will be forward and arm extends up.Stop
This should be continued by everyone throughout the entire group. Bend your elbow to 90 degrees with your palm open and fingers pointing down to the road.
The leader lets the group know to all turn left, or a rider within the group is making an exit. Have your left arm extended out straight and palm faces down.
The leader lets the group know to all turn right, or a rider within the group is making an exit. Bend your left elbow to 90 degrees with a clenched fist toward the sky.
This is a signal for another to take over the lead. Move alongside the rider and point to their bike, then swing your arm forwards, pointing in front of you; you may need to do this a couple of times if they don’t understand. Maybe back of a little too to encourage them to set the speed.
If there’s something to the left on the road, e.g., dead wildlife, loose gravel, bike-swallowing pothole, point with left index finger, arm angled down. If on the right, use your right leg and extend it toward the hazard. This is a 2 in 1 symbol, don’t do both at once… Continue through the entire group.
From shoulder height extend left arm out with palm down, pointing towards the ground then move up and down.
Extend your left index finger and arm toward the sky.
Left-handed peace sign toward the sky.
This is often used if the leader feels the group is lagging a bit… hey someone may have missed seeing a speed change sign, but if you don’t wish to go any faster… don’t! You’ll most likely catch up at the next intersection or pull into the destination as peeps are still pulling off their helmets.
Remember ride or own ride, as you feel safe.
Usually used to get off the road unexpectedly, immediately or at next exit. With left arm on upwards angle point index finger either left or right, depending on situation.
Aaahhhhhhh, we’ve all done this at some stage, left our indicator on… left arm out on angle, open and close fist.
…or a friendly copper is ahead. Tap the top of the helmet with your palm.
If someone does this to you, check your high beam isn’t on; if not keep an eye out on your speed. Keep our police officers and emergency responders safe… pull over to let them get through.
Running out of fuel is not much fun, especially with a group of people, so communicate you’re in need of a top-up with left index finger pointing to the tank.
Use your left thumb to point towards your mouth like it’s a straw to drink from.
Left arm out on an angle and shake your fist in a short, up-down action. Ensure there’s plenty of room to pull off the road if you can’t wait to the next rest area.
See you out there…
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