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Page Updated 02/28/2022

The Most Common Motorcycle Superstitions


People have superstitions for any and everything to get around any unfavorable event. It’s a form of security or comfort. Below, world famous Los Angeles motorcycle accident injury attorney, Michael Ehline, the motorcycle rider’s friend, will go over some riding superstition myths a rider might encounter over their life.

We will also explain the secrets of getting paid for questionable, or superstition related riding incidents. And it’s pretty damn interesting. So let’s go!

Black cats, for example, are thought to be unlucky. Cats, in general, are not really appealing, but black cats, more specifically, appear to be out to ruin your day.

It’s against the rules to stroll beneath a ladder, smash a mirror, or dump salt. The list goes on and on, but what about motorcycle superstitions?

Motorcycles have a long and illustrious history, full of fascinating individuals. Both of these industries are growing by the day, and it’s no surprise that this thriving two-wheeled lifestyle has spawned a slew of tales and superstitions that have been passed down from motorcycle rally to bike night.

Many superstitions and myths have been passed down over the years, and we’ve often wondered about the authenticity, truth, or even roots.

At Ehline Law Firm, we’ve dealt with a great deal of motorcycle accident cases, and here are the most common superstitions we’ve heard over the years when dealing with lawsuits:

What Are the Most Common Motorcycle Myths and Superstitions?

Here are a few of the superstitions we’ve picked up on:

  1. Guardian bells
  2. Dropping motorcycle helmets
  3. Green motorcycles
  4. Stopping to help other motorcycle riders
  5. Riding with your rear pegs down

Let’s look at these in further detail:

Guardian Bells

This is an interesting but a little unsettling one. A Guardian Bell is a little bell that some riders put to their motorcycle to ward off evil spirits while they are on the road.

It’s thought that the evil spirits you may encounter on the roads are to blame for any bad luck you may experience on your journey. Even though we are experts when it comes to motorcycle accidents, the law doesn’t really cover unwanted spirits.

The sound of the bell is said to pique the curiosity of evil spirits, who are then trapped inside the bell. In addition to encouraging evil spirits, the continual ringing of the bell drives them wild within, to the point that they can’t hold on and fall to the ground.

It does come across as a tad bleak, particularly if you try to visualize what these bad spirits may seem like. Even in the darkest and perhaps dismal situations, there is always a ray of hope.

In this scenario, the bell aids in the bonding of a biker community, particularly new riders. A rider is said to be unable to purchase their own bell; instead, it must be given to them by another motorcyclist. This usually leads to a friendship, a bond, and a potential lifelong riding companion.

A modified version of the guardian bell exists; however, it’s more of a type of remembrance than superstition.

To honor a fallen motorcyclist, several bikers put a brass bell on the left side of the swingarm. The fallen fellow rider is expected to be able to keep enjoying the road with their companions during riding season, which is a very nice deal, and the constant ringing is a nice reminder.

Dropping Your Motorcycle Helmet

The saying behind this superstition is, “As goes your helmet, so goes your head.” Ultimately, this means that dropping your helmet is very bad luck and must be avoided at all costs!

If you keep dropping your helmet, there is a risk you’re going to damage it, which might lead to motorcycle accidents. This equals a potential legal case, which is a bad idea. Moreover, a helmet that has been damaged is useless. It also does not seem to matter how brief the drop is.

Owing to this myth, you have to replace your helmet if you drop it. Even if it’s not damaged, you don’t want to deal with the bad luck. Fortunately, if you do run into bad luck because of this, Ehline Law Firm is here to help you with your case.

If you drop your helmet, it’s believed that your head follows. However, you’re expected to drop or have dropped a helmet before, and if that’s the case, buying a new helmet each time you drop it isn’t feasible.

Riders and any potential riding buddy should generally invest a significant amount of money in safety equipment to ensure that it is of high quality. Evil road spirits aside, when it comes to your safety, and that of other riders, this is not an area where you should cut corners. As a result, it’s a little impractical to expect someone to buy a new helmet every time theirs falls.

Green Motorcycles – Are Green Bikes Bad Luck?

Is riding a green motorcycle bad luck? Yes, there was a time when this was a thing and considered highly unlucky. In the past, a green painted motorcycle was thought to be a terrible idea. It’s possible that it’s one of the most ‘unlucky’ parts in motorcycle history.

While Kawasaki has transformed the superstition into something that is entirely their own, it wasn’t always this way. Green bikes used to be considered unlucky to tamper with till the Ninja motorcycles.

A Green Motorcycle has an Interesting History

The reason green motorcycles supposedly were thought to be unlucky because of all the people who drove green automobiles and died (accidentally) in race wrecks, as well as American soldiers who perished in World War II while driving their green military bikes.

We may now presume that enemy snipers attempted to prevent motorcyclists from sending critical communications between camps and bases, which is why so many riders died throughout the war.

People in the riding world, on the other hand, seemed fixated on the color green and avoided it under all circumstances.

Another factor to consider is that those identical motorcycles were also sold for a low price after the war. Granted, those bikes were probably not in the ideal shape to start with after having been used in a war. This means the people who purchased the bikes might have been riding unsafe motorcycles.

Stopping to Help Other Motorcycle Riders

Common with sea mariners, this is one that we believe everybody must embrace if they haven’t already. However, it wasn’t just a stroke of luck. Consider this superstition to be bad karma when failing to help out.

If you notice a fellow motorcyclist on the side of the road, you must always stop and provide assistance. Even if it doesn’t appear that they require it, you must stop and check.

At Ehline Law Firm, we fully support this as it might prevent a future crash. If you, unfortunately, do see a collision, make sure to contact our experienced lawyers at (213) 596-9642 for legal representation.

Riding with Your Rear Pegs Down

This motorcycle superstition is similar to the one concerning bells in that it’s thought that ringing a bell invites evil spirits to accompany you on your journey.

If you don’t have a backup motorcyclist with you, there is an old concept that you must never ride with the rear pegs down. Why? Maybe the spirits assume there is a possibility that a second rider is going to come and use your passenger pegs.

It’s most likely the same damned, little dark, bad spirits you’re attempting to capture in the small bell. In either case, it’s said that leaving those pegs down signals to the spirits that you’re inviting them to join you.

However, because their primary purpose is to cause havoc, these bikers are unlikely to be as nice as other motorcyclists, which is considered bad luck.

This old belief is a confusing superstition if you ride your motorcycle in a funeral procession in honor of a fellow fallen rider, you’re expected to rider with the rear pegs down. This so that your companion can have one last ride.

Thus,  we can see that this particular superstition is intertwined with other customs, and it’s not a straightforward one. This shouldn’t be an issue, because the old belied in the silver bell, makes bad mechanical problems from spirits (road gremlins) lose their grip on the motor bike ride.

Contact Ehline Law Firm Today Over a Superstition Related Motorcycle Incident!

Motorcycle culture and other traditions on two wheels can be quite a complicated one, which we don’t claim to fully understand. One thing we can do is help you with any claims resulting from a motorcycle accident and using common sense while riding.

Contact us at (213) 596-9642 for a free case evaluation about receiving a financial award of overwhelming compensation for your motorcycle-related incident or similar situation. You can also use our online contact us form for informational purposes only and a prompt return phone call.

Ehline Law Firm - Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC
Attorney at Law
Michael P. Ehline Esq.
Downtown Los Angeles Corporate Offices

Downtown Los Angeles Office
633 West 5th Street #2890
Los Angeles, CA 90071
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633 West 5th Street #2890
Los Angeles, CA 90071
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