Best Practices for Motorcycle Riding Positions

Pain in your joints and lower back after riding a bike is not a pleasant experience. Whether you are a beginner or a motorcycle riding expert, maintaining a proper motorcycle riding position is essential.

If you've felt back pain or muscle tightness, you need to learn the basics of proper positioning while riding. Here's a brief explanation of the postures you can use to ride your bike with minimal strain on your back and joints.

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Standard Position

motorcycle riding position

This position is also called the upright motorcycle riding position. It's comfortable for most riders regardless of their shape and size. The standard motorcycle posture puts very little strain on your back or joints because your spine is in a neutral or resting position.

While riding in this position, you keep your back straight while your ankles line up with your hips. You push your shoulders back a bit, giving you a relaxed posture. To avoid pain and discomfort around your neck or upper back, you need to keep your shoulders from hunching over.

The standard motorcycle riding posture is only good on certain types of bikes. It works best while driving a touring or dual bike. Using the standard posture while riding a motorcycle will be uncomfortable because of the seat's design and the position of the footrest.

In the standard position, you set your hands a little lower than your elbow, giving your blood the freedom to circulate well from your upper arm to your fingers. As you ride your bike, you will begin to feel pains in various "hot spots" around your body if you deviate from this position.

When you need to ride your bike for a short time, use the standard position. Most bike riders will stay comfortable in this position but doing so also depends on the type of bike they are riding.

Tall people (about 6 feet 2 inches or taller) may need to install risers on the handlebar because of their long arms and torso. The risers will help you keep your arms in the right position.

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Cruiser or Relaxed Position

The cruiser position is almost the same as the standard one, except for the lower body's adjustments.

In the standard position, your legs will bend back a bit as if you are in a straddle position. But while cruising, you put them in front of you. You can set them on footrests that permit you to stretch your feet forward.

The cruiser posture is the most comfortable motorcycle riding position. It allows you to use your feet to support other parts of the body. You will still need to keep a straight back, which will be easier since your lower body provides adequate support for your upper body.

If you love going on long rides, the cruiser position is the best for motorcycle riding because you can stretch out your legs in front. But what if your bike only has standard footpegs?

motorcycle seating position

To enjoy a comfortable ride with the cruiser position, install highway pegs to give yourself space to stretch your legs.

However, when you are riding a bike with a cruiser design, you need to prevent your limbs from being stretched out too far in front, especially on motorcycles with high handlebars. You may find it a bit hard to reach the brake or shift levers and still control the bike well. It may also be hard to maintain your balance on the bike when you turn at a slow speed.

Also, take precautions with your handlebars while sitting on a motorcycle with a cruiser design. Ideally, your arms should be slightly bent while riding. In most cases, you can adjust the handlebar's angle to suit the length of your arm.

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Sports Position

sportbike riding position

The sport position is the most intense of the three motorcycle-riding positions. If you love to ride a motorcycle, you need to keep your back straight while leaning forward slightly.

Mastering the sport motorcycle seating position needs a bit of practice. Try to move the upper part of your body forward by pushing your chest and holding your back straight. This way, your shoulders won't hunch over. Allowing your shoulders to move too far forward can cause backache as you ride.

The sport riding position is more comfortable on brief rides when you want to control the bike while traveling very fast. On a sportbike, you place your feet in a different position than the other riding positions. This allows you to lean over the bike as much as you can when you are going around a corner at high speed.

While the sport position is excellent for bike racing, it is tough on your body when you have to ride for long hours. If you are learning with a beginner sportbike, you can ride in a more comfortable position since they are less aggressive than the supersport models.

You may need to practice your sports biking with a bike that has a hybrid sport position. The footpegs are usually lower, and they are closer to the front of the bike so you can maintain a hip angle that is close to a standard position.

Remember that riding a motorcycle with an aggressive leaning and hip angle can reduce blood flow and cause numbness in your backside and lower body. But if you are preparing for a competition, applying VIDYA muscle and joint products will improve blood flow and prevent muscle cramps and numbness.

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How to Keep the Right Back Posture

After discovering the best riding positions for your back and other parts of your body, you need to make an effort to maintain good posture while riding. These tips will help you:

  • Monitor your bike's settings
  • Check your bike before and after you ride it.
  • Examine and adjust your seat
  • Check the handlebars
  • Make sure the footrests suit your body.
  • Apply VIDYA joint and muscle products to your back and joints

Related: 5 Natural Ways To Speed Up Muscle Recovery After Workouts

Bear in mind that your height and lower body proportions are unique. So adjust the bike settings to enjoy good comfort as you ride.


Planning an intense bike ride? Grab some VIDYA joint and muscle cooling ice melt to prepare your muscles for the journey!