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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I'm a new rider and a new Gixxer owner. I picked up an '09 600 in orange/black, took the MSF course, got my gear and license, and now can finally ride. I've only been able to go riding twice so far, though it's only been a week since I got the rest of my gear and license. I have a few questions that I hope you guys and gals can answer. I scanned some of the stickied threads, but I apologize if these questions were already answered elsewhere.

1) How should I be resting my right foot when not applying the rear brake? I'm concerned that if I rest my toe on the brake pedal it'll engage slightly, activating my brake light, confusing drivers in back of me, and possibly applying some brake power to my rear wheel when I don't want it to.

2) When I'm in a gear that I know I won't want to or won't be able to shift up or down from, for example when I'm in 6th on the highway, is it good practice to rest your toe on top of the shift pedal since the next time you'll be shifting, you'll be shifting down, and vice versa? Or is this not a good idea because you could inadvertently downshift sans clutch? Is there just a good general rule of thumb?

3) With regard to shifting, I've only owned manual cars, and I know there are other, quicker methods of shifting than the traditional roll off the throttle, disengage clutch, shift, and roll back on the throttle, matching engine RPMs while disengaging clutch method. Once I become more experienced, I'll probably start experimenting with these other methods. In the meantime, I'm sticking to the traditional method they taught us in MSF. I've noticed though that sometimes I have difficulty upshifting, in that the shifter pedal is resistant to upward pressure from my boot, and that sometimes I have to repeatedly push up until it clicks up. As you can imagine, this creates quite a lag between shifts. However, sometimes I'll be able to pull off remarkably smooth shifts. Is this because I may not be shifting within the ideal RPM range? Or do you think I'm varying when I'm trying to click up with regard to how far my clutch is depressed? I'm sure I'm not the only one who's had this problem, so any insight/advice/tips would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks! I love riding so far, and I love my bike, and I'm looking forward to getting more and more comfortable with everything.
 

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Welcome to the forum. You should be riding on the balls of your feet. When you need to shit a gear, your foot moves forward and shifts, then goes right back on the ball of your foot. This goes for both left and right foot. This also gives you a pivoting point when hanging tight corners.
You should practice doing this, and eventually, it will feel very natural.... :cheers
 

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I keep my feet in the manner Pro-Lux described. It just feels natural to me. Also, I saw a guy roll his toes on a steep lean once because he had his heels on his pegs instead of the balls of his feet. Broke his foot, it was nasty.

As far as shifting - you can shift upshift without using the clutch without damaging your transmission. you need to be quick and crisp, don't dilly-dally or then you will be damaging components. I've heard that you aren't supposed to clutchless downshift because it strains too many components when trying to match a faster moving drivetrain. I'm not 100% on that though (it doesn't feel natural to me anyway so I don't even try).

Although it feels rough now, using your clutch starts to be second nature and you can quickly, smoothly and safely shift once you have some saddle time. You may be missing shifts now because you aren't being crisp and firm. If you baby it, you'll grind and miss shifts frequently.
 

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^+1 on what they said, practice staying on the balls of your feet and clutchless up shifting. Practice brake control as well, test what your braking limits are and methods. Two finger braking or one finger, squeeze don't grab the front brake lever. Practice and more practice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Big ups for the pointers, gents. MSF was invaluable but there are definitely some small details, such as foot position, that they didn't cover. I'll keep at the shifting and try and be more firm with it.
 

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Another thing.... You could be going along with your rev's up and hit a chuck hole in the street. If you have your heels on the pegs, you are apt to hit the shifter and downshift the bike not being prepared for it. With your balls of your feet on the pegs, this cant happen.
 
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