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For every MotoGP champion, there was once a wide-eyed kid whose shifts were clunky and who had no idea how to change their own oil. For every Dakar champion, there was a first-time rider who didn’t understand the difference between tube-type (TT) and tubeless (TL) tires, much less how to fix a puncture in the middle of nowhere in order to navigate safely back to civilization. We’ve all been there. The first bike. The first ride. The first purchase of protective motorcycle gear that came packed with terms like ECE, Snell, CE-Level, MIPS, D3O, and a long list of other official-sounding acronyms. In our beginner’s guide to being a motorcyclist, we tackle it all. From the tips and tricks that our editorial staff has learned over the course of decades in the saddle, to the top motorcycle gear to get you going, we’ve combined all of our knowledge in one convenient place. So pull tight your D-ring straps, make sure the jiffy-stand is up, and if you don’t know what either of those things are, read on and you will soon enough.