If you have ever ridden your motorcycle around a corner, you have probably felt that the front wheel is turned in the same direction as the bike leans. Most automobiles will roll to the right when leaning left and vice versa. A motorcycle turns in the direction of its lean.

This is due to the gyroscopic force, which keeps a spinning rotor on the left side of a motorcycle upright while it leans on that same side and rolls around. The harder you lean, the more force is applied by your body to keep up with that lean.

What’s the right way to lean while turning a motorcycle?

For safety reasons, try to lean the motorcycle only as much as the turn itself requires. If you are riding with your knees bent and your body off-center toward the inside of the turn, you are leaning too far. Riding while standing up straight and with your feet on the pegs will allow you to lean appropriately in a turn.

There seems to be a threshold to how far a motorbike can lean before it loses traction. That’s why motorcyclists lean in the very same way, increasing the force of gravity and allowing them to take the curve faster. This, however, implies that the individual must return to its neutral state, which takes time.

When performing fast pivot movements, you cannot learn in the same direction as the motorbike. This is because you will be unable to return to the neutral position.

So the only way to lean your motorcycle when the curve is sharp is by using the rear brake. This will prevent the front wheel from rolling out to the side. For this maneuver to be effective, you should apply as much force with your feet as possible. It’s also important to keep your knees bent for you not fall over sideways.

And that is where counter-leaning comes in. The body remains erect when counter-leaning, and the motorbike leans. As a result, tight pivot maneuvers are relatively easy to execute.

And that is why, when riding a motorbike in a city, you should counter lean rather than lean with the motorcycle. In addition, when conducting an emergency maneuver, the rider must counter lean.

Then there’s the matter of the motorcycle colliding with anything. The first thing that happens when a motorbike collides with something is that the tires lose grip and the machine slips. If the rider is in neutral, the motorbike will lose its balance. As a result, it makes more sense for the rider to counter lean for the motorbike to balance.

With counter leaning, the rider must keep up with the pressure applied to the handlebars. If you’re not constantly on top of that pressure, the machine will fall over. But if you keep up with it, there’s less chance of losing your balance or falling over.

You’ll notice that counter leaning is evident in every maneuver a motorbike performs: when accelerating and when decelerating; in right turns and in left turns; when braking or accelerating while counter leaning. So you must learn how to perform this exercise correctly if you plan on staying safe while riding a motorbike.

What are the benefits of this method?

Counter leaning doesn’t change what you’re taught about riding a motorcycle. It’s simply an alternative to the conventional method. Motorcyclists are taught to lean with the vehicle when turning, but many riders will tell you that counter-leaning is ideal.

Counter-leaning allows them to learn at a faster rate than they normally would and thereby take a turn at higher speeds. The main advantage of counter-leaning is that it allows motorcyclists to complete an emergency pivot maneuver quicker and more effectively. It can also help motorcyclists complete tight turns when there isn’t any space for those maneuvers, thus keeping them from crashing into whatever comes in their way.

If you have ever ridden a motorcycle, you know that it will turn in the same direction as its lean. Many motorcyclists get it wrong and maintain that conventional method of turning because they feel like they will fall over if they were to counter-lean while taking a sharp turn. This is only possible when riding at high speeds.

When turning, there is nothing like this. You will feel so much more comfortable counter-leaning while riding a motorcycle that you can take some other errors out of the equation.

Counter leaning will also enhance overall performance and stability, especially when taking sharp turns. The only thing a rider can do correctly while counter-leaning is maintained the pressure on the handlebars at all times.

If you don’t counter-lean correctly without losing control of the motorcycle, you’ll end up throwing yourself off balance; which will make it harder to control the bike so that it doesn’t fall over.

If you’re going to control your motorcycle while counter-leaning and properly leaning with it, you won’t need to be an expert to do so. However, if you want to learn how to do it right, simply practice and gain some experience before entering a competitive race.

Once you learn how to perform the maneuver safely and effectively, it will make your riding experience so much more satisfying. You’ll be able to take turns at high speeds without losing balance or outright falling off. The only time a rider should fall off would be during an emergency maneuver when counter-leaning is not an option.

This is why counter-leaning is ideal for motorcyclists who are not well-versed. It’s known as an emergency maneuver, so it shouldn’t be used inappropriately by riders who have mastered the art of riding.

Why Do Motorcyclists Lean Into a Corner?

When a motorcycle approaches a corner, friction creates a turning force, also known as centripetal force. As you travel ahead, the force causes a torque around the bike’s center of gravity, which leans the motorbike outside the curvature.

You must lean into the curve to keep the bike from toppling over. If you don’t lean in enough for your cornering speed, gravity will take control and fling the bike and you out of the turn and into the ditch, or even worse.

You slow down while the motorbike is still moving in a linear fashion (straight up and down), then you gaze in the direction you want to travel, press on the handlebar on the chosen turn side, and roll first on the throttle through the curve. This movement on the handlebars causes the motorbike to buck, or bounce up and down.

This brings the bike up at an angle. As you continue to buck the bike into the curve, you find a sweet spot where you’re leaning enough while still maintaining a minimum lean while flat-out and coming out of control.

As soon as the motorbike starts moving during this parallel path, it will naturally tip off its left side in a right curve. You must counter-lean against that tipping action. It’s the same rule that applies when you’re riding a bicycle.

Cornering judgment and technique

Nothing you can do will be faster than the laws of physics. If you’re not familiar with how motorcycles respond to cornering, then you’ll want to practice a couple of times to get comfortable before entering a race. There are a lot of different variables that make cornering possible and counter-leaning is one that many riders don’t understand.

Motorcycles respond to forces around them differently than other vehicles and although motorcyclists have mastered the art of riding, they often don’t fully understand how their machine responds to forces. They may end up overshooting the turn or crash into an obstacle in an attempt to compensate for cornering incorrectly. There are 4 well-known techniques and they are:

1. Slow down: Slow down and move away from the corner gradually, then move closer to the corner before going into it.

2. Look where you want to go: Turn your head and gaze in the direction of the turn. This will change your mind so that it will agree with your body, which helps you to counter-lean the motorbike into the turn.

3. Maximum lean angle: Lean at an angle that puts the front of the bike near the inside edge of the curve and keeps both wheels straight through the corner.

4. Practice, practice, practice: Don’t participate in any races until you understand the basics of cornering and can control your bike while taking a turn at high speeds. It may take some time, but it’s worth it in the end.


There will be a great deal of pressure on your wrists and shoulders to counter-lean with the handlebars, which makes it a viable option for motorcycle enthusiasts who want to take the risk.

However, you must practice getting it right because some riders are used to leaning without countering the lead into the curve. This could lead to an accident or even worse. It all depends on your knowledge and skill as a rider.

If you’re considering this method of riding, then go for it! Counter-leaning is an excellent way of improving your riding skills and managing corners more effectively. The best part about it is that it’s relatively safe compared to other methods.

What makes counter-leaning so effective is that you can utilize the pressure of the handlebars to lean into a turn while maintaining stability. It requires practice and an understanding of how your motorcycle responds differently to forces than most vehicles, but once you get it down, you’ll be able to ride faster through corners without losing control.

Counter-leaning will not work for everyone, though; It depends on whether or not you understand cornering at high speeds and how your motorcycle responds to steering inputs. The art of counter-leaning is a tricky one, but it’s an extremely rewarding skill to master.

Counter-leaning will not work for everyone, though; It depends on whether or not you understand cornering at high speeds and how your motorcycle responds to steering inputs. The art of counter-leaning is a tricky one, but it’s an extremely rewarding skill to master.