Posted by Gomoto Media

Motorcycle accidents can happen due to the combination of many factors: The road condition, mistakes due to other drivers, the weather, etc. But accidents also happen due to the rider’s own abilities, or lack of.

Good news is, advanced riding schools and teachers have narrowed down the causes of mishaps creating by the rider. You see, we humans have several in-built defence systems called “survival instincts.” There is no doubt that these instincts have kept our forefathers alive until now.

One of these is called “target fixation.”

What is target fixation?

The instinct originates in our brains telling us to keep an eye on a dangerous situation or hazard. While it worked well against predators, it unfortunately becomes a bane when we ride motorcycles that travel at much faster speeds. And, the strength of the instinct increases as you increase speed.

Have you entered a corner a little faster only to find your vision locked onto the outside of the corner instead through it? Or a car pulled out of the junction right in front of you and could only stare at it, wishing that it goes away? Or you saw a pothole in the middle of the road and still proceeded to hit it although the hazard is only 0.3 metre wide, while the road is 8 metres wide?

All those issues were caused by your brain telling you to fixate (lock) your vision on the danger, hence, target fixation.

So, how do we fix it?

Like many bad habits, we can train brains to overcome them. As such, we can practice away target fixation. Keep these points in mind:

  1. The motorcycle goes where we look.
  2. Ride with a wide field of view – do not let your vision tunnel down.
  3. A wide field of view lets you open up the road in front of you, thereby creating more space.
  4. With that wide view, look to the sides of the hazard when you spot one.
  5. Steer the motorcycle away from the hazard.


  1. Find an open road with no traffic. Better yet, a large parking spot.
  2. Start with 40 km/h. Look up and look wide.
  3. Imagine a pothole or any hazard some 5 to 10 metres ahead of you (depending on your speed).
  4. Look to the either side i.e. left or right of it. 5. Then steer to either the side. Keep practicing until it becomes a habit, and your muscles will follow suit (muscle memory).
  5. Add 10 km/h at a time and keep practicing.