Find us Online October 2013 - Issue #32  
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Learn more about each of our courses and which one is right for you.



All courses for the 2013 riding season are now posted online and open for registration

Please note that classes at some sites have concluded for the 2013 season.

To register online, visit or call us at 208-639-4540 or toll-free at 888-280-7827.



If you've taken one of our courses and received the Dealer Discount flyer, remember to take advantage of the discounts offered by showing your 2013 STAR completion card. The discounts are valid until December 31st, 2013. Thanks to all businesses who support Idaho STAR graduates!

Can't find the flyer? No worries, we have it online HERE.

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Choices, Decisions, and Commitments

The terms “choice,” “decision,” and “commitment” are often used somewhat loosely and sometimes interchangeably. I don’t intend to get in to the specifics of vocabulary definitions here, and it’s fine if your definitions are different. What I do intend to do is to explore these terms and how they might apply to the choices, decisions, and commitments we make regarding motorcycling.

CHOICES – when we make a choice (expressing our ‘freedom to choose’), it is often based on what we like, what feels good, and/or an emotion of impulse of the moment. This is not to say that the choices we make are only emotionally driven, or that they are always bad, but they are often made quickly and with little conscious thought. In this definition, choices are largely emotional or ‘right-brained.’
Some examples of choices:
I chose to have the chocolate ice cream for dessert because I like chocolate ice cream.
I chose to wear my heated vest under my jacket because it keeps me warm – and I don’t like to be cold when I ride.

DECISIONS – when we make a decision, we are often weighing options and selecting one option over others based on some comparison and analysis. We have invested some time and effort in thinking it over and have decided that one option is better than the others and we elect that option because of it. In this definition, decisions are more logical or ‘left-brained.’
Some examples of decisions:
I decided to buy the 4-door model instead of the coupe because we have 2 small children and it’s easier to get them in and out of the car with back doors.
I decided to take an experienced level rider training course because my friend recommended it and my insurance agent said I’ll get a discount.

COMMITMENTS – when we make a commitment, we have decided that one option, course of action, or goal is best for us (and/or our loved ones) in the long run, and make an intellectual and emotional pledge to ourselves to act in accordance with it. The nature of making a commitment suggests that there will be times in which we may want to make a different choice or decision and that we are making a commitment not to. A common American example is a commitment to exercise or healthy eating. There are times when we don’t want to go to the gym and/or when we want to have McDonald’s combo #5 and supersize it for dinner. The commitment we have made to ourselves toward what we really want long term is what gets us to the gym and gets us to order the salad. One way to think about it is that we are giving up something we may want right now for something we value even more in the future. In this definition, commitments combine both emotional and logical thinking (right-brain and left-brain) and tend to take a longer term perspective.

In the Idaho STAR Basic Courses, we have a series of 13 “Smart Rider Commitments” throughout the student workbook. With the definition of a ‘commitment’ described above, we encourage the students to read through each statement and initial it to indicate their commitment to themselves. Our goal is to inspire them to make commitments and to take actions that will help them prevent and survive crashes. In that same spirit, here are those “Smart Rider Commitments” for your consideration. If any (or all) of these inspire you, we encourage you to take the time to grab a pen and initial them. 

>> Read all "Smart Rider Commitments" HERE.


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Fortunately, he caught himself with his face…

So, I’m outside riding bikes (bicycles) with my 3-year old son in the driveway. He has his bicycle helmet on – as do I (doing my best to lead by example) and we are riding pretty quickly in tight circles. He rides a Strider Bike (no training wheels, no pedals), so he is pushing himself with his feet.  In the middle of a turn, he catches his heel on the axle nut of the back wheel, pops the rear wheel off the ground, and presto – low side and face plant...

>> Read more HERE.