How Long Does It Take To Learn How To Ride A Dirt Bike For Adults?

How quickly can you learn to ride a dirt bike? Are there ways to learn faster? If you’re new to dirt biking, then this article will answer these questions for you. 

Riding a dirt bike may seem intimidating if you’ve never tried it, especially if you’re an older adult. However, learning to ride doesn’t have to be difficult or scary if you get the proper training. 

Is it hard to ride a dirt bike?

To ride a dirt bike, it doesn’t take much skill. I’ve taught many people how to safely ride in less than 10 minutes, including a teenaged and 60 year old girl that has never touched a dirt bike before. 

With that said, to skillfully ride a dirt bike on technical trails or a track will take a lot longer. 

How long? That depends on a number of variables. Some of the most important factors to how quickly you can learn to ride are:

  • Who’s teaching you?
  • Are you learning the basics?
  • Do you actually practice what you learn?
  • How often do you ride?

How to ride a dirt bike with a clutch

Learning to use the clutch on a dirt bike is probably the hardest part for a new rider. Not only is it one more thing to learn than the gas and brakes, but the concept is completely different. 

To have control over the clutch takes proper technique and practice to build up your muscle memory.

You have to know when to use the clutch, but also how much you need to slip it and how long. Then there’s other little tips and drills to take your riding skill to the next level. 

All said and done? You must learn the basics of how the clutch works and where the “friction zone” is that engages or disengages the clutch.

How long does it take to get comfortable riding a dirt bike?

Are you just riding in your field or backyard? You can get comfortable riding a dirt bike in a matter of days. But, once you expand your riding goals and ride other areas that are more challenging, it can take a considerable amount of seat time to get comfortable.

It took me at least a couple of years before I was comfortable riding local single track trails. But once I started riding in the mountains where there was lots of rock, steep hills, and challenging terrain, it took another 2-3 years before I was comfortable riding my dirt bike out there.

It really depends on your core skills and how much time you spend riding a certain type of terrain or trail. You don’t have to be fast to be comfortable on a dirt bike.

In fact, to be comfortable simply means that you’re in complete control of your bike.

This includes:

  • Starting
  • Stopping
  • Clutch
  • Braking

Once you have the basics down, then you can gradually push your pace to become a faster rider.

You need to learn how everything works while riding slowly before you can comfortably and safely learn how your dirt bike works at higher speeds.

How to ride a dirt bike for beginners

So, what’s the best way to learn how to comfortably ride a dirt bike? If you’re a beginner, learning and drilling down the basic techniques are an absolute must.

I must say that once you get to a certain level of riding skill, not everyone is going to have all of the same technique. But, there are some core fundamentals that are naturally needed for you to quickly progress. Failing to learn the basics will slow down your learning curve, and it may even lead to more accidents.

Okay, Kelley, I hear you, but what are these basic techniques you keep talking about?

That’s a great question, and they include:

  • Learning how to efficiently use the clutch and throttle 
  • Basic braking techniques to safely slow down without sliding out
  • How to balance so that you can ride technical trails without falling or dragging your feet like your buddies do
  • Proper shifting technique to give you maximum power, traction, reliability, and to conserve energy
  • How to use your body so that you can be confident on corners, hills, whoops, rocks, logs, and more

It turns out that there’s a lot of basic riding techniques that you must learn, and that doesn’t even count setting up your dirt bike to fit YOUR specific body and riding style.

Are you a new rider and want to learn these techniques in a step by step video course? Click the button below to get 3 Free lessons from my Virtual Dirt Biker School. 

Kelley Fager

I help new riders learn how to safely ride and understand how to tune and fix their dirt bike in their garage.

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