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Broke my leg on Video! What am I doing wrong?

By 26.06.2023June 28th, 202340 Comments

Two years after I broke my leg for the first time, I broke it again. Same leg, similar situation. Only this time, I caught it on video!

Help me understand

I’d like to prevent this from happening a third time, and I’m hoping that some experienced off-road riders can help me understand how this happened and what I should do differently. I also hope that this can help others from making the same mistakes.

Before diving in, I’d like you to know that my leg is going to be OK. I had an operation, adding two plates and 19 screws. I will need to walk on crutches and have physio for a while, but I should be fine again in a few months.

The Fall

Here’s the video of the fall. It’s not too graphical apart from the twisted foot you see in the thumbnail.

So on this trip, I’m riding my 2018 KTM 690 Enduro R, with a Mitas E-08 rear tire, tread about halfway through (see picture below).

The 2018 690 Enduro has basic (non-cornering) ABS on the front and rear, which I left ON for this stretch. I’m standing on the pegs when the bike starts sliding. I have a fully loaded Mosko Moto Reckless 80 on the back, and I’m wearing Sidi Adventure 2 boots.

My Riding Background

I’m 46 years old and have been riding for almost 20 years. The first 10 years were mostly road riding. After that, I started adventure riding with, at times, some pretty gnarly off-road stretches in it. I live in Mexico, and the trips we do are about 50% road and 50% off-road, varying from easy gravel to quite challenging rocky and mountainous trails. I never did any off-road training though. I learned by doing, and from watching YouTube videos (I know I know…that’s probably going to be your first comment, and you’d be right, but hold your horses 🙂).

My interpretation of what happened

So, here’s my interpretation of what happened, gathered from the video footage and what I still remember. As you can see in the video, at some point, the back end starts breaking away, and the bike starts falling onto its left side while still moving forward. The front tire appears to still have traction at first.

While I’m falling, I keep my left foot on the foot peg for quite some time (in reality this is probably less than a second). While I’m still falling, and the bike has not totally hit the ground yet, I try to take away my left leg from under the bike (as this happened to me before, I didn’t want my leg to get crushed again). But, I’m too late. The toe-end of my boot digs into the dirt with the weight of the bike starting to push down on it, while the bike is now sliding forward on its side, twisting my foot, and breaking my tib & fib (tibia & fibula) in the process. My tibia broke into 11 pieces.

What did I do wrong?

Now, I have a few things that I’d like to know, which I hope, some expert off-road riders in the community, can answer for me.

Why did the back-end start sliding?

I was standing on the bike, pushing it down away from me, leaning it into the corner slightly. The line I chose had some loose dirt, but nothing crazy it seems. I was not giving it gas / accelerating. In other words, I don’t believe it was traction that broke the rear tire lose. Honestly, I don’t understand why the back started breaking away in the first place. I have two theories though:
1) Perhaps I was not weighing the outside peg enough, or maybe weighing the inside peg even?
2) Perhaps I used the rear break (I don’t remember) blocking the rear wheel? But, then again, I had ABS turned on. Wouldn’t that have intervened?

Could I have saved it from falling?

Could I have saved it from falling after it started breaking away? As I remember, I was already halfway toward the ground when I realized what was happening. In my mind, I was going down, and there was nothing I could do about it anymore. Was I wrong? Could I still have done something to prevent the fall altogether?

Could I have prevented my leg from breaking?

Would it have been better (would I not have broken my leg) if I had kept my foot on the peg, or if I tried to jump off earlier?

Could motocross boots have prevented my leg break?

I don’t believe motocross boots would have helped in this case, as it was the twisting of my foot that caused the break. Am I wrong? Could motocross boots have prevented my leg from breaking?

Would cornering ABS have saved the fall?

As mentioned, the 2018 690 has basic (non-cornering) ABS. Suppose I was breaking hard in the corner (I don’t think I was, but let’s suppose so), would this ABS system have prevented me from blocking the rear wheel? Or do these basic ABS systems only work in a straight line? If I had cornering ABS, could that have saved the rear from breaking out?

Win a First Aid Kit incl Splint, worth over $100

After my first accident, I started carrying a better first aid kit, including a splint. I’m so happy I did because this really helped out this time. As we were very remote when the accident happened, having the splint with me enabled my friends and me to fix my leg in position, preventing it from moving and possibly causing more damage. I was so pleased with this that I now believe every rider should have such a kit with him/her on their rides. So, I reached out to Survival First Aid, who sell high-quality first-aid kits for all kinds of purposes. Based on my story they decided to create their motorcycle bundle consisting of a high quality-first aid kit, a splint, and a waterproof bag. We will be reviewing the bundle soon and posting about it here. Meanwhile, check out our competition to win a motorcycle bundle on Facebook.

In the end, it sucks this happened to me twice. But I know I’m not the only one. Lower leg injuries are the most common injuries in (off-road) motorcycle riding. For a short while though, I contemplated giving up riding altogether, but I just love it too much for that. I’d rather learn from my mistakes, and by doing so, reduce the risk of this happening to me a third time.

So, to all off-road experts, please chime in, and help me and others prevent these mistakes.

Thank you,
Guido

Guido

Guido

Independent Developer of ScenicApp

40 Comments

  • Jeff says:

    Hi Guido, so sorry to read that you broke your tib and fib. In my opinion the Sidi Adventure 2 boots are way too soft for off-road riding of any kind. Enduro or MX boots, while less comfortable to walk in, offer much more protection. I am skeptical that your break was only twisting because it broke in 11 places. If it was only twisting then the first break would have relieved the torsional stress in the bone. The Mitas E08 tire is an 80/20 tire and you ride 50/50 so perhaps such a tire would be a better choice for you. Unfortunately the video goes to slow motion and there is no audio so we can’t hear what the engine does as you lost traction. It doesn’t appear that you would have needed to use the brakes there so perhaps you lost the rear under acceleration, in which case traction control might have intervened on your behalf, if such a feature was available. Best wishes for a quick and full recovery.

    • Guido says:

      Hi Jeff, thanks for your insights. If you like I can send you the normal-speed video. I didn’t want to include that here, as you hear me cursing and screaming 🙂. But, for what it’s worth, there is no acceleration. The engine sound is steady.
      You might be right about the 11 pieces not being fully caused by torsion indeed. Having said that, this is the same leg that broke last time, so I guess that also has something to do with the 11 pieces. I fully agree on the Adventure 2 boots though. I think I need to upgrade. Might not help with torsion accidents, but will definitely help with impact. Also the tires is a good point. The ‘stupid’ thing is that I have 50/50 tires as well, but didn’t think they would be necessary for this trip. 🤦🏻‍♂️

  • Bill Flood says:

    Sorry to hear Guido…good for you opening this episode as a learning experience.

    Difficult to know why the tire broke traction. Biggest thing I see though is lack of counter steering once the slide started. You would have to steer into the slide (steer to the right) which is a bit counter intuitive, and therefore needs practice, as you are on a turn to the left. But since the rear tire slide is increasingly pointing the bike frame to the left you’d have to counter steer right to keep the bike up at least long enough for the tire to gain traction.

    Some electronics would help control the rear slide but not necessarily ABS. Drive train wheel control would help the most there IMHO but without counter steering it might not have been able to halt the slide either.

    Motocross boots would surely have helped if you also had structural knee support. My Sidi Crossfire 3 boots and knee support have saved me from just such a catastrophe. Keeping your feet on the pegs so the twisting of your foot didn’t occur would have helped but without motocross boots you could also end up with a crushed ankle, etc.

    Hope you recover soon!

    • Guido says:

      Thanks Bill. Great catch on the counter steering. That didn’t occur to me yet. Makes total sense. I guess that’s where a good off-road training course would have been handy. With drive train wheel control, do you mean traction control? Definitely going to upgrade my boots. As I mentioned already in my response to Jeff… they might not help much with torsion (although combined with a knee brace it might), but will definitely help against impact. Thanks again. Appreciate your insights!

  • Phil says:

    Hey Guido – tough news, but glad to hear you’ll be OK. I’m strictly a road rider, so I’ve got no off-road tips. But at 63, I can say the impacts hit you harder as you get older!

  • Per Nevermann says:

    Hi Guadio I am really sorry for your accident but glad it didn’t turn out worse.

    Last year I managed to brake my fibula and stretched the ligaments really bad in an attempt to avoid a wire that was mounted across the road on my Freeride e. 6 weeks and a lot of rehab worked well.
    I was wearing Tech7 cross boots but no god knee brace.

    I got suspicious when you mentioned “a fully loaded MM R80” that is really bad for the 690 “balance” especially if you just filled up your tank.
    Every off-road bike has its golden spot in weight distribution between front and rear. If rear suspension is much lower than the front it will no longer steer as easy (wants to go straight) eg. chopper style. So your input is much slower to take effect. And ones it started to go sideways your or out of options, counter steering will only result in a highside.
    Maybe the best practice is to remember to lift the inside leg to avoid injuries.
    Wish you all the best and a speedy recovery
    Per

    • Guido says:

      Hi Per, Sorry to hear about your accident too. Who mounts a wire across the road and why? Anyway, good to hear you recovered! Was your break caused by torsion or impact? I assume torsion as you broke knee ligaments too? The tech7 boots are really good. Do you think even stronger boots (like the tech10) would have helped? Also, good point on the weight distribution, although not sure it had something to do with this particular crash as it’s the back-end that loses traction first. Maybe someone else can chime in on that here too. Thanks again and regards, Guido

  • Sean says:

    Sorry to hear this Guido..

    While I’m not an expert, I’ve spent many, many years in the dirt. .

    IMO:
    1) you need a more aggressive set of tires for that terrain.. That tire is more road biased. Even if it was new the same problem would have likely have occurred, all things the same.
    2) as the rear of the bike began to slide out to the right, you needed to steer into the slide (like a flat-tracker), you steered away from the slide.
    3) it appears – though it’s hard to tell for sure – that you applied the front brake which would have caused the front end to tuck and dump you on your side even quicker. Aware of the drop-off on your left of the road…you may have instinctively grabbed front the brake. On the upside…you did not go over the edge, who knows how bad that could have been.

    PRACTICE: Get yourself a more aggressive set of tires and head out on the 690 a la carte. Spend a few days on different terrain including sand. When your confidence builds, THEN you can load up for an adventure.

    Hope you have a speedy recovery!

    • Guido says:

      Thanks Sean. Appreciate your insight.
      Tires… check. I have 50/50 tires. Just didn’t put them on for this trip. 🤦🏻‍♂️. Steering in, is the same thing Bill mentioned above, right? That’s a very good observation that never occurred to me before. Thanks! I don’t think I was breaking with the front (at least in the time that my right hand is in the shot … I’m firmly gripping the bar, not the brake it seems).

      • Charles says:

        You can clearly see in the video that the front tire completely stops rolling. It looks like the front tire is completely locked, hard to tell if you’re grabbing the brake or not in the video.

        RESPONSE GUIDO (sorry… can only respond to 3 levels deep): That’s the slow-motion effect kicking-in. 100% sure the front is not locking up. I just watched the normal speed video to verify.

  • Jared says:

    I feel for ya – especially given it is a second break. Looks like a better rear tire, better boots maybe, and indeed perhaps weight distribution would help as the rear breaking traction first does seem to indicate a mismatch of traction front vs rear. Immediate counter steer may have helped as another poster indicated but that takes practice and built up instinct…and enough room not to crash at the corner too! (Watch Porsche 911s counter steer like crazy to save from doing 180s and you’ll get an idea about the weight mismatch/quick countersteer requirement)

    I ride with Gaerne GX1s boots off road and they managed to save me from myself many times until they didn’t. Rapid front tire deflation in a corner on a paved road crushed my ankle in the boot when the bike landed on it – mostly a break on the outside of the ankle, likely near where the boot buckle is. Asphalt is unforgiving.

    On another day off road with a full R80s and at low speed I had marginal traction front and rear on a loose rocky downhill double track. I slid out the front tire momentarily and despite the low speed, when it hooked back up I got the front wheel over a dirt berm but not the rear, trapping the foot ahead of the R80 but the boot was pinned foot on the peg between the bike and berm. Getting it out with the R80 pushing from behind was not great. That one broke my fibula.

    Like you, I think about what I could do differently next time…like getting away from the bike (usually no time), even better boots, tubliss in the front (to prevent rapid front pressure loss….maybe) and maybe the R80s in full trim are just too much to ride the way I ride off road and I should stick with R40s or not full R80s. I did have knobby dual sport tires but fresher rubber or going away from DOT rubber may have helped a bit on the loose rocky downhill I was doing on my second crash. It is only a 300lb Kawasaki but maybe a lighter bike and lighter everything else would help as well as more and more practice.

    • Guido says:

      Thanks Jared. So you had your fair share of accidents too. I guess in the end, there’s only so much you can do. Accidents happen. A rapid deflation in a corner is not something that you can anticipate and practice for. But indeed maybe better boots, different tires, less luggage, and I believe, most importantly, more practice and training, should at least reduce risk. I was thinking of going even lighter for my bike, e.g. switch to Kawasaki KLX300 or Honda CRF300L, but then again, these bikes are nearly as heavy as my KTM 650 Enduro, and I do quite some highway to get to dirt on my trips. In the end I believe the weight of the bike has only limited impact on the amount of risk.

  • Ken Gillett says:

    Bad luck Guido. It happens. You are right however to try and understand why it occurred, then don’t do it again. (advice from Mick Doohan).

    IMO, you lost the front, causing it to turn in and then you possibly braked the rear and caused that to slide around, but it might have occurred anyway without the braking. However, from the video I’d say you lost the front first, it turned in and once that’s gone, it’s very hard or impossible to correct.

    Don’t concern yourself with how much weight was on each peg etc as it’s all irrelevant. The tyre’s don’t care what you were doing on the pegs. They either grip or they don’t and loose/rough surfaces as you were on are unpredictable.

    Don’t try and ride like on the road where you lean into the bend, possibly more than the bike as then, if you lose traction, you just hit the ground quicker. Be more upright and able to put your foot out and although sliding, use it to help keep the bike up until traction can be regained. Look how dirt track riders do that. With the inside leg out and off the peg, also less chance of the bike landing on it.

    Not sure what footwear you were using, but my advice would be proper motocross boots as they offer huge protection, even from twisting. Uncomfortable when walking maybe, but you’re not walking. You’re riding a bike and that’s where it counts.

    Unfortunately, even the best of us can’t get it right all the time.

    • Guido says:

      Hi Ken, I’m pretty sure I lost the back first. It’s a bit difficult to see, but if you look closely, you see the angle of the bike change before the front starts to lose traction. The leg-out technique is something I thought of. Will need to investigate this a bit further. Perhaps take some lessons on the local motocross track around here. I’m pretty sure as well I wasn’t leaning in like on the road. I’ve had enough practice to know that’s the ‘wrong’ way to do it on dirt. I was (trying to) lean the bike into the corner, with my weight/hips out. I was standing on the pegs. I was wearing adventure boots (Sidi Adventure 2). I’m pretty sure it would have been way worse if was wearing lower boots and/or touring boots, but also quite certain now, after all the comments, that a full on MX boot could have reduced the damage. Well… we live and we (hopefully) learn 🙂. Thanks!

    • Guido says:

      It indeed looks like the front is locking up, but that’s the slow-motion effect kicking-in. 100% sure the front is not locking up. I just watched the normal speed video to verify.

  • NoVaDave says:

    So sorry to hear about your accident, but I wish you a speedy recovery. I don’t know if MX boots would have saved your leg in this instance (maybe), but they will definitely in others over ADV boots. ADV boots just don’t cut it. I hear lots of stories about guys injuring their leg on an ADV bike and I can’t think of one that was wearing MX boots.

    The good news is that less riding = more time working on Scenic. A win for us! Just kidding, get well soon!

  • Guido says:

    I’m 100% sure the front tire is not locking up. Agreed it looks like that in the video, but that’s the slow-motion effect. I watched the normal speed video again just now to verify. The front wheel is not locking up.

  • 4Star says:

    Guido, I hope you heal well and can get back to it.
    I have been riding road bikes since I was a kid. I only started riding dirt after I was 50, and that was so I could learn more for my adventure bike riding. And while clearly it is a young man’s sport, the amount you learn, makes you a better rider all round. (There’s a reason MotoGP riders ride dirt bikes.) I have not had any lessons, but I listen to others (ignore most of it, but watch them), analyse my mistakes, and try to experiment with what others say and do.
    Anyone who tells you the tyres or the boots were causal factors, you should ignore. If we get down to it, speed is more credible, but that’s every time you move your bike.
    From the audio, it seems like you are decelerating into the curve. (normal) In the loose dust, I’m guessing the engine braking was enough for the rear to let go. The 690 (fully loaded) is not light, and the momentum of that heavy tail just keeps it going (out of the curve).
    If you are stiff, holding the bars tight (sitting or standing), as your arse moves with the back, so will the bars. And hence, you loose the font.
    (I’m also guessing your geometry, when bike loaded, is quite stable, so to maintain the lean angle (and turn in) there is some force required, into the curve. This is suggested by the front wheel turning in even harder as it looses grip. This is from your force being held steady.)
    As some of the responders have stated, to catch a slide, you have to turn out. Yes it is simple physics. But to do that, you must practice it until it becomes a reaction. If you think, analyse, act, you’re under the bike with a broken leg. However, as a riding buddy of mine is oft to quote, “I do stupid shit on purpose, so when it happens by accident, I’ll know what to do.” (This also applies to the road.)
    So to answer you question, what you did wrong, was to not practice, in the gravel carpark, locking the back up as you slide to a halt, spraying your mates in gravel. (Or many other silly things that are frowned upon that help you ride better.
    I am happy to discuss more of the physics (I also have an Honours degree in Engineering), or some of the theories, getting around, or even the three golden rules. Just drop me an email.
    4Star.
    PS. I have a set of Sidi Adventure 2’s. They have stopped my leg getting twisted off more than once. (I’ve worn them on the YZ450f, WR450f and the R1200GS on single tracks and forest roads (after getting a log to pierce my other mx boots), (and regularly while touring on the Speed Triple and K1300S) and they are great boots.)

    • Guido says:

      Hi 4Star. Thanks for your feedback. Thinking about it, engine braking could indeed have been a cause for the back to break out.

      My biggest conclusion from all responses is indeed that I should have steered out. So, in the end, I should have practiced this. Once I recover, I’m going to take a training course and practice a lot, without luggage.

      Although not the main cause, better tires and stronger boots won’t hurt and will definitely reduce the risk of losing traction, and a leg-break caused by impact respectively.

  • mattik says:

    Hallo Guido,

    tut mir leid das zu lesen.
    Ich hoffe, Du kannst deine Erkenntnisse daraus ziehen und Du machst das nicht nochmal 😉
    Gute und schnelle Besserung.

    Mathias

  • Mike says:

    Hey Guido,

    I was sorry to see that you had crashed (again!), and that your injuries are so extensive. Even in slo-mo, your video does not make it very clear what might have happened. Is there any footage from other riders? That would certainly help as would a longer normal speed edit. From the video, all we can do is guess at what might have started the slide. Yes, you didn’t countersteer (this time), but that’s just part of the accident. People go down in all sorts of weird ways, and I know from hard experience that you don’t go down with a plan. I have to say I am very glad you didn’t go over the side of the road!!!

    I do recommend, as have many others, that you upgrade your boots. I use Alpinestars Tech7 Enduro boots any time I’m in a low-traction environment, and Leatt Z-frame knee braces often, as well. Alpinestars A-10 chest protector, and so on, as well. I see from your other article you wear a chest protector, and are considering knee braces, so that’s good to know.

    Honestly though, I’m not sure the boots (and even braces) would necessarily have saved you here. Your foot unfortunately got captured and twisted, and your leg possibly also got crushed(?). Braces are supposed to help with twisting, and may have helped here, but sometimes physics wins regardless of the gear. Better boots would almost certainly have helped with crushing forces but it’s hard to know what really happened in this incident.

    I had my own crash last year, and it got “into my head” a little (https://youtu.be/AuUFLxUEmg0). Can’t remember if I shared it with you before. It was actually somewhat similar to yours, except for the injuries. In my case I was doing around 25mph when I lost the front a little, then the rear, low-sided and slid into a bank at the side of the road. The crash would have been nothing at all if not for hitting the bank. The bike was bounced back into me at probably around 20mph and I’m convinced that’s where my injuries happened: badly separated shoulder and injured rotator cuff and three broken ribs (boy do I wish I had a chest protector on, and this is where my new rule came into being!).

    But there was not even a scratch on my lower body, and none of my many falls has ended up with lower body injuries. I was not doing anything technical and it didn’t feel particularly risky. I was actually practicing on gravel, as I’ve done a number of times. Just this time it went horribly wrong and seemed very random. I know you must feel the same way. I’ve watched videos of other people going down in a similar manner — sudden and shocking, and seemingly mysterious.

    My philosophy on all of this at this point is there’s nothing you can wear, and no amount of practice you can do, that can completely prevent injuries. Even the nature of practice, itself, is risky. At some point you’re going to go down, and in some percentage of those occasions you are going to be unlucky and get injured. All one can do is try to reduce the odds of serious injuries by gearing up and practicing anyway. You have to decide if the risk is worth the reward. For me, so far, it is — but it’s becoming more questionable as I age (esp as a relative beginner at off-pavement riding).

    I hope you heal fully and are able to return to riding when, how, and where you want to — if you want to!

    – Mike

    PS: Keep up the good work on Scenic. It has come a long way since the earlier days of me emailing you every other day 😉

    • Guido says:

      Hi Mike,
      Thanks for your comment. I watched your video (partly, as it always makes my stomach turn a bit to see these things 🙂). Happy you are OK now. I guess your recovery took quite some time.

      My train of thought is very much the same as yours. Gear can’t save you from everything, but it will reduce risk. Regarding boots, I have not made a decision yet. Doubting between Tech 7 or Tech 10. My surgeon is convinced my leg breaking into 11 pieces was a combination of torsion and impact. If that’s true (I have no reason to doubt him), then boots would have at least reduced the damage.

      As for knee braces… I’ve heard mixed stories. By wearing knee braces, you protect the knee, but if the force is strong enough, it might travel up and break something up there (upper leg, perhaps). Something’s got to give?!? Not sure. Not an expert on that, and the internet is giving mixed stories.

      From some comments here, I’m convinced that training could have helped. The steering-out is counterintuitive. Something you need to practice so that it becomes second nature.

      In any case, I will be very careful from now on. Stick to the pavement at first to build confidence again. Because this is really stuck in my head now.

      • Mike says:

        Yes it took me a good 8 weeks to feel mostly healed. No surgery for my shoulder, which is miraculous given the extent of the injury as told by an MRI that I demanded well into recovery. The doctor was pretty amazed at my range of motion and strength given the above. However I do wonder aloud how fragile all those parts are now, and to that question all the doc could do was grimace and shrug 😬.

        Expenses in the lovely USA health care system were well over $10k, but fortunately picked up by my motorcycle insurance and health insurance, so I didn’t pay a dime out of pocket (other than for the insurance premiums :-)).

        I also managed to contract COVID during my recovery, which was “fun” with broken ribs 🤡.

        Who am I to disagree with your doctor? 🙂. He or she has covered all the bases with the torsional and crushing forces 😬. And yes, I’ve read the same WRT knee braces. One of those trade-offs similar to arguments pro/con regarding neck braces. My main issue is that it is even harder to get around in them, on top of the Tech7s, and it’s also hotter. However, once on the bike they kind of disappear. I don’t wear them all the time but wearing them part-time still reduces overall statistical risk, I guess. Tough call. Good luck with your decision.

        Tech10s would be the ultimate, at least from Astars. I find their boots to be supremely comfortable. However the Tech10 might prevent reasonably walking, whereas the Tech7 Enduro is very protective, but (very) slightly more geared for walking and off-bike traction (as I understand it anyway). As we have established, it’s up to the individual to make the trade-offs between risk and comfort/convenience.

        I myself would also love to get into some professional training, but all such resources are a very long ride/drive from me, unfortunately. Sometimes I consider just paying someone to come to me and teach me in my own region! I hope you can find something. In the meantime I am working through the Chris Birch ADV online video series and will also do the dirt series. Affordable and full of ideas.

        I’ll close with this video by Everide that just scrolled across my YT feed, and seems applicable to our situations as well:
        https://youtu.be/UF6VSGZjrhA

        – Mike

  • Fairchild Hunter says:

    I would suggest a more dirt worthy tire such as Motoz Rallz and motocross boots. I think a wash out like this would be pretty common with your rear tire.

    • Guido says:

      Yeah.. Better tires for sure. In the corner there was very fine moon-dust (which obviously I didn’t see 🙂)

  • Mark says:

    I had a similar injury a few years back. Just 9 parts in my case. I ended up getting a nail put in my Tib. Better than plates I think.
    My crash was on a BMW R1200GS so my foot was behind and protected by the piston so it didn’t crush anything. After I went over the high side it broke it on landing.
    Get off road training, it will help bring the confidence back.
    Also $10K is very cheap. My helicopter ride was $22K alone.
    Best of luck on the recovery and make sure you do all the physical therapy, 100% worth it.

    • Guido says:

      Definitely going to get offroad training. It’s hard to find good quality training in Mexico though. Might end up booking a few courses in the US, if time and finances allow it.

  • Tom Höhn says:

    Hallo Guido,
    Gute Besserung, mach viel Reha Training dann wird es wieder.
    Gruß Tom

  • miro says:

    Ohi Guido, just learned about this, so sorry and good luck for the recovery. First of all, off-road sometimes you come off without necessarily having done anything particularly wrong. It’s just the way it is, it’s the risk you have to accept an embrace. It is probably more helpful to learn how to fall gracefully, rather than to try and learn how not to fall. (I myself am still nursing a shoulder injury i picked up nearly 2 years ago on a slippery muddy downhill, and I still believe I didn’t do much wrong just paid for lack of experience in recognising that terrain and the dangers it presented. So dont bash yourself too hard, it’s all experience (which ideally is better made at an earlier age, when falling hasn’t got such drastic consequences).

    Now, coming to your points, unless you did something funny with the throttle, indeed looks like you weren’t weighing your outside peg nearly enough. Also it seems to me you might have demanded too much of your tires, that were not really top for loose surfaces. In any case, I suspect you might have controlled the rear coming out with better clutch control and counter steering when the front still had traction. And yes, perhaps traction control could have helped, not really sure, but why do you mention cornering abs? Have you tried to use the brakes while you were losing control?

    Re the rest, yes mx/enduro boots (hard plastic ones, never mind the metal tip would have help, as it would have to have jumped off the bike earlier, not leaving you leg beneath. Again, if your weight is on the outside, you’d tend to fall on the bike rather than under it!

    However, speed recovery and thanks for all the good work you’re doing.

    • miro says:

      PS. somebody mentioned engine braking as a potential cause. Maybe. Which reminds me to advise in terms of off-road technique that it is crucial to always cover your clutch lever, leave throttle be steady, control power through clutch: it’s your traction control. Most often turns in the loose are done with constant throttle (to avoid engine braking upsetting the bike and clutch in the friction zone to finely control power on the ground and slide. In particular, upon feeling the rear step out, I would have immediately pulled the clutch in, which together with counter steering would probably have saved the crash.

      • Guido says:

        OK. Clutch control. Got it. Thanks Miro.
        I didn’t use the breaks when I was losing control (I think). It all happened so fast.

  • Guido says:

    Thanks so much everyone. This has all been so helpful. Your tips really help me understand what I could have done differently. Not it’s just a matter of time before I can take some offroad training and learn how to apply those techniques (and get better tires and better boots 🙂).
    Thanks again everyone.

  • Jan van Niekerk says:

    Thx for your story, Hope you get well soon. I’m a beginner so these situations help me understand the risk and what i should be wearing and do. I do take off road riding lessons here in Holland. Love it and learn a lot! One thing I learned now, is to keep a good medical kit, like in my boat! Thx and keep on the good work! Sincerely, Jan.

  • Zane Odem says:

    Guido, First let me say I’ve been trying to find a better motorcycle app and I just can’t, so thanks for making this! I use it on every ride I do.

    I’ve been riding for over 45 years; started on dirt, graduated to street, now I do both on my DL1000. You have a lot of good advice here, maybe I’m not adding to it, but maybe just further confirmation. There are so many variables to your situation there can’t be one answer. But you put enough of them together that should mitigate the damage if/when the crash occurs.

    Trying to not crash in the first place is the best place to start (duh right?). Tires appropriate for the ride paired with being able to ride within whatever means your tires will allow. If you choose to ride mostly off road you need at least a 50/50 tire, in your situation maybe even a street legal knobby would be best. But if you’re like me and like to hang the corners on the way to the trail, you can’t have a knobby. So I ride the Michelin Anakee Adventure. Great grip on the street and OK on the trail. BUT, I have to ride slower on the trail to avoid a slide out.

    Practice on the gravel/dirt to know what your bike will do, and how you will react to it. I grew up on a gravel road and rode almost every day. I got very good at “drifting” my bike around corners with my lower leg out for stability. This works very well if your bike is light. If you have a heavy bike (mine is 550lbs dry/750-800 loaded) this really can’t be done because you can’t hold the bike up if it starts to go down. Ever drop your bike in a parking lot? It starts to go and you just can’t hold it up and have to let it fall? My advice with a heavy loaded bike if it starts to fall, let it, trust your gear to protect you and your bike.

    I can’t really speak to the gear. Mine is all very average and the other suggestions come from riders who have more to say about that.

    Bottom line: my advice is to ride within your means. Know the limitations of what you and your bike can do. Don’t let your buddies try to get you to push out of your comfort zone. A little stretch is good to grow your skills, but too much can end in catastrophe.

    Happy riding!

    • Guido says:

      Thanks very much Zane. After having had some time to let all the comments sink in, I fully agree with you. It was a combination of lack of skill/experience, wrong tires, being out of my comfort zone / pushing myself, and maybe (just maybe) better boots would have helped.
      Still recovering, but hopefully I’ll be back on the bike in about 2 months or so, this time, taking it a lot easier, ride within my limitations, and just enjoying the ride. 🙂

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