An Introduction



IMG_3884Seneca Rocks West Virginia

Entering its 10th season, The Rider’s Workshop is an on-road boutique Appalachian 2-day workshop for intermediate to advanced riders who want to develop more riding confidence and expert road riding skills. The Workshop is a thorough study of East Coast mountain riding in groups no larger than 5.

Using two-way radios and roadside “chalk talk,” riding coach and Workshop founder, Jim Ford guides you. It’s never about riding fast.  Instead Jim slows you down and introduces –  layer by layer – skill by skill – The Art of Riding Smooth. Being smooth means heightened awareness, and a relaxed presence of mind.  Being smooth means being “one” with your machine, then together, being “one” with the road. Being smooth means safety and fun at any speed especially through curves.

Afterward, your ability to confidently handle your motorcycle with newfound skills and expertise will give you great enjoyment and satisfaction, since what you have largely done was to develop YOUR LINE.

The “classroom” is miles of Appalachian Invisible Roads. Except for locals on tractors, in pickup trucks, or riding in Amish buggies, Invisible Roads are virtually unknown to outsiders yet offer compelling riding conditions, great beauty, and wild, natural surprises! These rural roads run along tilled farmland, pastures, remote ridgelines, and stretch along shaded creeks of clear splashing water. And there is very little traffic!

Finally, and most importantly, The Rider’s Workshop is dedicated to safe mountain riding. Like Zen, The Art of Riding Smooth is an enlightened state of mind.

Here’s what one rider recently wrote about his experience in The Rider’s Workshop:



Thanks for a terrific weekend of riding.  I’ve been riding for 15 years, but I learned a ton …….. lane positions, vanishing points, corner entry, relaxing, soft hands, cornering with a fist full of torque, and slow riding/”U” turning tips.  And my favorite new technique, the proper way to trail brake.  It worked so well.

To talk about those things is one thing, but your workshop allowed us to practice them over and over on hundreds of miles of beautiful, curvy, hilly, unforgettable hidden roads of the Appalachians, while actively coaching us on the intercom.  Your techniques are pretty much ingrained in my riding now, and thanks to you, I feel that I’m a much better rider.  I practiced all the way home.

Every rider who is serious about wanting to ride well should take your course.  I’ve spent my fair share of money on lots motorcycle stuff, but your workshop is by far, the best value.  Your quips over the intercom are still fresh in my mind ……. “Local traffic doesn’t stay on local roads very long”.  “When in doubt, downshift”.  “Take a deep breath, relax and nice soft hands on the handle bar “rests”.

You are a gentleman, a genuinely nice guy and a great riding coach.. Thanks again for a great experience.

Ron Baroody
Fairport, NY

 Posted by at 4:28 pm