How To Ride A Motorcycle In A Group

Table of Contents

How To Ride A Motorcycle In A Group

Motorcycle group ride

There are no concrete rules when riding motorcycles in a group. It’s even legal to ride side by side in some places of the world (not a good idea). There are a few good tips and tricks to be aware of to make the experience fun and enjoyable without sacrificing safety. You can only control your own actions so ride to your ability and use your common sense. Group riding is about sharing the already awesome experience of motorcycle riding with like minded individuals. It helps to give riders a more goal orientated experience and social aspect to the ride which us humans thrive off.   

Meet up and organise a leader

Organise a time to meet up and stick to it, one of the most annoying parts of group riding is waiting for late riders. Meet up and plan the route or at least the next stopping point. Sometimes it’s just better to leave and meet up later if riders are late, delaying riding time. Meet at a fuel stop or head to one after meeting up so everyone has a full tank of gas. Organise a leader that knows the directions or has a GPS, that way there’s no confusion in directions. Everyone should at least know the next stopping point in case they get separated, which is a regular occurrence. 


The most important and useful signals for communication are pointing out hazards and police so make sure everyones aware of those signals, usually putting out a leg for a road hazard or using a hand to signal slowing down. If any riders have bluetooth communication it will be helpful for the leader to have bluetooth also, as they will spot any hazards or police first. It also helps if the rider at the back of the group has communication with the leader in case someone has an accident. Group rides are much more fun when riders can communicate with each other. 

Group dynamics

All group rides are different, sometimes everyone knows each other and the group has its own dynamics for who rides where and who leads etc. Other times everyone has just met or friends of friends join the group. If the number of riders exceeds 8, it’s a good idea to split the group into 2 groups for road courtesy and safety. No matter how connected you are with the other riders, the only person you can control is yourself. So take responsibility for your actions and try not to get carried away with peer pressure or trying to impress other riders with risky behaviour. If someone in the group is riding dangerously, keep plenty of distance and read the 8 step accident guide listed below to prepare for their inevitable crash. 

Riding the freeway

When freeway riding the group should all ride relatively close together in a staggered formation so nobody gets lost or left behind. Keep a nice safety bubble of space around each rider. Always try to stick to the speed limit as this is where you will most likely get fined for speeding…if there are riders eager to get to the destination let them go and meet up later. If the destination is more than an hour away, organise a rest stop along the way for refreshments and potentially a refuel. Freeway riding is usually the most uninteresting part of the journey, communication with other riders will help to make this part much more enjoyable.  

Riding the twisties

When arriving at the twisties, meet up at the bottom of the mountain and discuss riding positions and stopping points, fastest rider to slowest rider is a good idea. Some riders will ride hard and fast while others like to chill and take in the fresh air and scenery. It’s recommended to ride with other like minded individuals for the group dynamic to work, if you’re the only rider going hard or super slow, maybe it’s best to ride by yourself. I ride a 1000cc supersport so I like to ride with a group that hits the twisties hard, but during the ride to the twisties I am super chill, ride the speed limit and take in all the scenery. Sometimes slower riders will join my group for the day, they just take their time and meet up at the next stopping point. Don’t put any pressure on slower riders, always know your limits and ride within them. 

Accidents and first aid

First off, accidents should be extremely rare and hopefully you will never need to deal with one. Although in saying that ,in the event of a crash it’s good to know what to do as most people will panic or become useless. These days nobody leaves home without their mobile phones, so in the event of an accident call emergency services for help, or if there is no cell phone service, send a rider out to get reception and call. Everyone should know basic first aid in the event that someone has an accident or just for life in general. Here are 8 steps to take if a rider goes down to achieve the best outcome you can:

1. Stay calm and safely pull off the road

2. As you approach the accident and the victim, take a quick assessment of the crash and its seve rity to help you make important decisions 

How wrecked is the bike? How far did the victim slide or fly away from the bike? This will provide information as to how bad the injuries both internal and external may be. If the victim is limp, this is a big indicator of severe injuries) 

3. Do not move the accident victim!  

Get someone to call emergency services if they are around but if you’re the only one on scene delay this step until securing the victim first. This takes priority. If the victim is up walking around, convince them to stop moving and wait for a medical assessment.

4. Make sure the victim is safe from other traffic, if the rider is on the road block traffic from both ways somehow

Get your fellow riders or other road users to help, if you have to move the victim off the road because of traffic danger, do so extremely carefully and with as little movement as possible.

5. Convince the victim to stay still if they are conscious. Do not remove the victims helmet if they are breathing, do not give the victim any liquid 

If they are not breathing and you believe the helmet is contributing, remove it slowly and carefully. The reason for no liquids is in case surgery is required

6. Call emergency services or get someone else to do it if you haven’t already

Never assume someone will call – This is called the bystander effect (the more people around, the less likely people are to provide help or call for help)

7. The operator is trained to assist you on the phone, they will want to know if the victim is breathing, has a pulse or not or is bleeding.

To check a pulse put 2 fingers on the Carotid Artery, located on the neck next to the windpipe/adams apple. If a pulse isn’t present, the operator will explain how to do cpr)

8. If the victim is bleeding, try to stop it (apply hard pressure with your hand or a cloth) and hold it until a medic arrives. 

This is a basic list that can be applied to most motorcycle accidents. The main takeaway is to get paramedics there as quickly as possible as you never know the extent of the injuries. The most dangerous time for a crash victim is the time between the accident and when an ambulance arrives. This is where the 8 step list is important and may help save someones life. Some riders may just get up and walk away and be fine, others will be in serious need of medical assistance. Always assume the worst just in case, as a motorcycle accident is almost always very hard on the body and can cause unseen internal injuries in the body and brain.  

Group riding is an awesome experience if done properly. It’s great to get out and socialise with others who also enjoy riding motorcycles. It may take some time to find fellow group riders that fit with your riding style and wants/needs from a group ride. If things aren’t going well or there are reckless riders within the group, just leave and try again on a different day with different people.