Group Bike Riding Hand Signals

Group Bike Riding Hand Signals

Although motorcycle hand signals are something that most riders learn as part of their motorcycle license exams, often they are forgotten and not used when actually needed. For example, if your signal lights are damaged, or if you’re riding in a large group, communication between riders via hand signals are critical to staying safe at all times. Here’s a useful infographic to help serve as a refresher for some of the more common hand signals.

Left Turn

For letting the group know you are turning left. Make the signal by extending your left arm straight out with your palm facing down.

Hand Signals

Right Turn

Let the group know you are turning right. Bend your elbow 90 degrees, then point your clenched fist at the sky to complete the signal.

Hand Signals

Stop

When the leader of the group makes the “stop” signal, it should cause a chain reaction going all the way back to the last rider in the group. Make the signal by bending your arm 90 degrees, keeping your palm open, and pointing your fingers down at the road.

Hand Signals

Speed Up

Use it to tell the rest of the group to match your pace by increasing their speed. Extend your arm and swing your palm in an upward direction to give the signal.

Hand Signals

Slow Down

This signal is useful because motorcycles generate intense engine braking forces, which do not activate the rear-facing brake light. Extend your arm and swing your palm down toward the road to tell everyone in the group to slow down.

Hand Signals

Follow Me

Used to announce a new, often self-appointed group leader. Make the signal by extending your arm forward at the shoulder with your palm facing outward.

Hand Signals

You Lead/Come

AKA the “YOU! Follow me!” signal. It has 2 distinct parts. Start by pulling up alongside the rider you want to follow or lead. In one motion, point to their bike and then swing your arm forward. Repeat this motion until the other rider understands.

Hand Signals

Road Hazard

This is a “2 in 1” signal. If the hazard is on the left, point with your left arm. Point with your right foot if the hazard is on the right.

Hand Signals

Refreshment Stop

Indicate your intention to stop at a gas station or restaurant. Make a “thumbs up” with your left hand and gesture toward your mouth (or the front of your helmet) as though your thumb is a straw poking up out of a glass of water.

Hand Signals

Turn Signal On

To make a “blinking” gesture using your left hand, alternate between extending your fingers and making a fist. Use this signal to let another rider know he left his blinker on, allowing him to save face during the next comfort or refreshment stop.

Hand Signals

Pull Off

The pull off signal is given when the reason for the stop is something other than a comfort or refreshment stop.

Hand Signals

Cops Ahead

Let your fellow riders know about police activity up the road by patting the top of your helmet with your left palm. Use caution and respect all laws when riding your motorcycle.

Hand Signals

Fuel

When riding with most groups, running out of gas will earn you a nickname you probably won’t like. Communicate your need to refuel by pointing to your fuel tank using your left index finger.

Hand Signals

Proper signalling is crucial to safety, like during large group rides or track days, important hand signals should be communicated during a pre-ride meeting.

 

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