I bought my first bike and started riding in 2013. Although I grew up (to a degree) around people that rode, it wasn’t embedded in my family culture, it wasn’t what brought us together, and I don’t have memories of my first mini bike. I knew people that rode, I grew up near the motorcycle mecca that is Milwaukee, WI, but that was the extent of it.
When I picked up riding, it wasn’t something that “was expected.”
I’m not sure what people are more surprised about — the fact that I ride a motorcycle or the fact that I’m an ex-sorority sister.
Not every female becomes a rider in the same way or for the same reasons, but once you’ve indeed decided to ride your own, there are a few common threads that weave us into the larger motorcycle community.
Passenger Life is not Rider Life
Although many women prefer riding as a passenger to riding their own bike, it’s just not the same. Don’t get me wrong, being a passenger is an amazing experience, but there are so many reasons women make the leap from passenger life to rider life.
Prior to getting my own bike, I rode fairly often as a passenger, but the minute I took control, everything changed. This is something all motorcyclists regardless of gender can relate to.
But for women, I think something really special happens when you pick up your own bike, turn that bad boy on, and get your knees in the breeze. At least I know it did for me.
Riding motorcycles completely changed my outlook on life.
Think I’m fucking with you?
I’m not. It has been one of the most pivotal things in my life.
People often state things like thrill, control, adventure and the ability to travel, and the motorcycle community as their reasons for riding.
But that’s not really it, is it?
Those are the benefits.
The real reason we ride is because of what it teaches us and who we’ve become.
As a child, teenager, and young adult I’ve experienced phases of insecurities. Women especially tell themselves dirty little lies like:
- I’m not good enough
- I’m not pretty enough
- I’m not smart enough
- I’m not deserving enough
- I should be more like this …
- I’m too weird
The craziest thing happened soon after I started riding.
I started to love myself.
And it wasn’t because I became someone else or people suddenly found me to be kewl.
It just happened.
Riding a motorcycle gave me a confidence boost I’ve never experienced before. It allowed me to truly depend on my own skills and abilities and realize I was enough. When you’re riding, there’s no one out there except you. No one can take credit for your abilities, your mistakes, or your perfect precision. Mamasita, that is all you.
Every time you get on a motorcycle, you prove something to yourself. Every time you prove something to yourself, you realize how freaking amazing you really are. When you’ve experienced this, there’s really no question between riding as a passenger and riding your own because you’ve come so far, and life’s so much better up front.
So the honest truth behind why women ride motorcycles? It’s because it’s here where we’ve found ourselves. It’s here where we’ve found home.