A motorcycle, also known as a moped, bicycle, or cycle, is usually a two-wheeled motorcycle designed for lightweight travel. Motorcycle style varies widely, from the tiny chopper to the massive touring bike. The word “motorcycle” actually comes from the Italian word meaning two wheels. In the United States, however, two wheels are more commonly used. Motorcycles have become a very popular mode of transportation, with millions taking to the road every day.
Most motorcyclists traveling on public roads and highways in the U.S. today obtain a drivers license through their state or province. To be able to legally drive a motorcycle in most states, the motorcycle must be registered. Motorcycle registration is separate and distinct from a motorcycle license. Prior to obtaining a three-wheel motorcycle license, however, some states require motorcyclists to have obtained a motorcycle safety course, in addition to passing a test regarding riding ability, engine capacity and others.
Requirements for a license to ride a motorcycle vary by state. Some require completion of a rider skill test, an exam that covers highway safety and other laws of general application; while others only require completion of a specified number of hours of supervised driving after completing the safety course. Most states require that a licensed motorcyclist show evidence of training in basic motorcycling skills before being granted a license. In addition to a showing of training, an individual interested in becoming a motorcycle driver or rider must pass a state driver knowledge test.
Motorcycle safety courses can help an individual prepare for their state driver’s license test. These training sessions help participants develop familiarity with highway and traffic safety, proper motorcycle maintenance and care, and more. Some states also offer advanced rider’s license classes. Participants who successfully complete the training and passing the written test are issued a motorcycle license.
The ultimate goal of any beginner motorcycle enthusiast is to receive his or her driver’s license. In order to do so, a prospective rider must pass the road test administered by each state in which he or she intends to drive. Each state establishes its own minimum standards for passing this test, but it is strongly recommended that anyone wishing to obtain a motorcycle license first take at least one full motorcycle safety class. Classes typically last a few hours and are offered throughout the spring and summer months.
For individuals who already have a motorized scooter or motorcycle, the next logical step may be to take a rider safety course. A typical course lasts about two hours. Instructors will teach participants proper motorcycle maintenance, good riding habits, safe vehicle handling and other important tips and information regarding two-wheel and three-wheel motorcycles. Students will also learn how to ride defensively. With adequate training and a clean driving record, a person may operate a two-wheel or three-wheel motorcycle legally.