There’s a myth that women don’t like working on motorcycles or getting dirty. Well, that’s not the case with every woman! According to WomenRidersNow.com and the Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC), more women are riding motorcycles than ever before. Through the first three quarters of 2008 (that’s the last time these figures were made available), the percentage of female riders had increased by nearly 30 percent compared to the same period of time in 2003.
Always one to stay ahead of the curve, a bunch of J&P staffers got together in 2005 and offered the first free Girls Garage Workshop at our headquarters in Anamosa, Iowa. Then, last fall, we brought the Workshop to our Ormond Beach, Florida location, where a whole bunch of women became more familiar with motorcycles and motorcycle maintenance.
Garage Girls Workshops are separated into four main sections:
- Bike Overview: Here, J&P Cycles’ expert staff and motorcycle technicians cover basic motorcycle terminology and each major part of the bike.
- Pre-ride Inspection: During this part of the workshop, participants learn to check tires and the fluid levels, the operation of the brake system, and a are taken through a hands-on visual inspection to make sure that everything on the bike looks okay.
- General Maintenance: Here’s where the fun really begins. During the General Maintenance portion of the workshop, everyone learns how to change their motorcycle’s fluids, air cleaner, and plugs and wires, as well as how to adjust their bike’s cables and belts/chains.
- Add-on Accessories: As you would expect of the world’s largest aftermarket motorcycle parts and accessories retailer, we wrap up the half-day workshop by demonstrating how to change/install some of the most common and popular aftermarket motorcycle accessories.
Each of the Girls Garage Workshops we’ve offered has drawn a larger crowd than the one before, and here’s why… check out these comments from recent Workshop attendees:
“I think it is great to have classes for women bikers. There are more and more of us out there, and it is nice to be recognized. I think one of the reasons women ride their own bikes is for the freedom and independence. I can only speak for myself, but I want to know how my bike works so I don’t have to rely on someone else (a man) and this class helped me to understand the basic mechanics and feel more comfortable with the inner workings of my bike” -Penny
“I am a first time motorcycle owner and rider. I took this class to become familiar with the different parts of my bike and to understand what maintenance and up keep is needed to keep my bike in good running condition. I found the class very helpful and am looking forward to more classes at J&P Cycles.” -Samantha
While the next Girls Garage Workshop isn’t slated until later this year, that doesn’t mean you have to wait until then for information geared specifically to women riders. Check out the following videos, featuring J&P’s own Becky Mull: