MSF RiderCoaches Enhance Skills at IRETS Workshop

MSF Rider Education Programs

Motorcycle Safety Foundation News

The Motorcycle Safety Foundation’s understand that teaching motorcyclists skills to riding safely is systematic. This is what prompted the construction of 25 programs, including Basic RiderCourse, Advanced RiderCourse, Military SportBike RiderCourse and a Street RiderCourse.

The manuals for instruction are the same anywhere an MSF course is taught. And to create an even more polished rider curriculum, the MSF hosted in September the 2017 MSF International Rider Education Training System Workshop in Columbus, Ohio.

MSF Rider Education ProgramsThere, hundreds of RiderCoaches from across America were also able to speak directly with MSF staff during the 2½-day workshop, sharing ideas and feedback. The insight the MSF staff gained from listening to and learning from participants has been invaluable.

“It’s very refreshing to have MSF staff and RiderCoaches together as we improve our practice and celebrate our service leadership toward increased safety and quality of life for the thousands of riders who participate in MSF RiderCourses and programs,” said Dr. Ray Ochs, MSF’s vice president of training systems. “We are extremely pleased with the results of IRETS 2017 and look forward to providing even more professional development opportunities.”

The workshop in Columbus, Ohio, featured nearly 30 presenters, with many RiderCoaches and Program Administrators volunteering on the panels, and nearly 80 breakout sessions. Also in attendance were several dozen military program coordinators and state program administrators.

Among workshop topics were Improving Questioning Skills; Time Traps and Tripwires; Getting Riders Back After the BRC; Quality Assurance Practices; Military Programs: Way Forward Thinking; RiderCoach Trainer Forum; Street Strategies, Local Conditions and Facilitation; Theory and Research Into Practice; Teaching Solo with Small Groups; Program Risk Management; Riding Academy special sessions and more.

The MSF also celebrated the hard work and dedication of two RiderCoaches: Kip Bickford, Florida Rider Training Program Manager; and Michael Russell, Director of Safety for the U.S. Special Operations Command out of MacDill Air Force Base. The two men, who are also RiderCoach Trainers, were honored with MSF Leadership Awards during a luncheon.

“We had an extremely successful event. Many RiderCoaches told me they felt recharged after the workshop and were eager to bring what they learned back to their classrooms and ranges,” said Rob Gladden, vice president of the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. “The excitement from the participants and the amount of knowledge and ideas shared by all made this one of our best workshops ever.”

About half of this year’s participants said this was their first IRETS workshop. Participants also had a chance to check out new gear, motorcycles and powersports vehicles at the American International Motorcycle Expo, which was held on the same weekend at the Columbus Convention Center. Nearly three-quarters of all attendees indicated they would likely attend IRETS 2018, when it will be held in Las Vegas in October.

Visit for more information about the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. MSF certified RiderCoaches can visit to find out more about the 2018 IRETS workshop, as well as information about upcoming MSF regional rider education and training system workshops (rRETS).

The Motorcycle Safety Foundation® promotes safety through rider training and education, operator licensing tests, and public information programs. The MSF works with the federal government, state agencies, the military and others to offer training for all skill levels so riders can enjoy a lifetime of safe, responsible motorcycling. Standards established by the MSF® have been recognized worldwide since 1973. The MSF is a not-for-profit organization sponsored by BMW, BRP, Harley-Davidson, Honda, Indian Motorcycle, Kawasaki, KTM, Piaggio, Suzuki, Triumph and Yamaha. For safety information or to enroll in the RiderCourse nearest you, visit or call (800) 446-9227.