Select Page

Many people enjoy riding motorcycles as a result of their maneuverability and openness. However, these features come with a few trade-offs when compared to cars and trucks. Unlike four-wheeled and many three-wheeled vehicles, motorcycles do not have a sturdy base to support their weight. Motorcycles are kept upright by a kickstand, a rider’s legs, or momentum. A motorcycle can easily fall over when none of the three options are available for it to keep balance. A rider may discover during the moment that their motorcycle has fallen over that motorcycles are decently heavy. However, no matter the size and strength of the rider, there is a proper way to pick up a motorcycle.



Before a rider attempts to pick a motorcycle up from the ground they should ensure that the engine is turned off. Turning off the engine will prevent further damage from insufficient fluid flow. The rider should then open the kickstand so that the motorcycle can have a sturdy foundation to stand on. Lastly, the rider should ensure that the bike is not in a neutral gear so that it doesn’t roll as they attempt to pick it up.


The Lift

Once the proper preparation steps have been taken, the rider should then turn their back towards the motorcycle and sit on the edge of the bike’s seat. Next, the rider should hold the end of the handlebar and walk backwards so that the bike begins to stand up. As the motorcycle begins to approach an upright position, the rider will want to lean it over at a slower rate so that it can rest on the kickstand.



The method presented here works for riders of all shapes and sizes. Picking up the motorcycle this way also allows a person to utilize the power of their legs, rather than their arms or back muscles, in order to safely pick up a motorcycle. At the 2018 New York IMS conference, Harley Davidson performed a demonstration of this technique using a lightweight rider and a decently heavy Harley Davidson Sportster. During the demonstration, the presenter was not only able to pick up the motorcycle with ease but she continued to talk as she lifted the motorcycle off of the floor. With practice, it should become fairly easy to do.