Spring is the start of motorcycle season. If you’ve been thinking about getting your own bike or dusting off the one that’s sitting in your garage – it’s time to make sure you’re ready to roll! Our motorcycle training courses are ready to help you embrace the warmer weather and hit the open road, safely.
As with the general car driver’s license, motorcycle licensing in Ontario is graduated. A full motorcycle license is known as an M class license, and M1 and M2 are the two intermediate levels on the way.
For your M1 license, you’ll need to study the rules of the road. You then take a written test and vision test at one of Ottawa’s two Ontario Drive Test Centres. No road test is required to get your M1. The goal of this level is to allow you to begin instruction and learn bike basics.
To get your M2 probationary license, you’ll need to take a road test on a closed course – that is, not on public roads. This test should be taken between 60 and 90 days after receiving your M1 license. This level of licensing allows you to drive a motorcycle in public traffic, with some restrictions.
Lastly, to move to a full M class license, you’ll need to take a full road test on public streets. The test is meant to measure your experience on your bike, and so can only be taken 22 months after getting your M2 license or, if you take a certified safety program like ours, after 18 months. If more than five years have passed since your M2 was granted, you’ll have to start the process over again; however, once you have your M-class license, it never expires.
Gearing Up Intro is perfect for absolute beginners who have been thinking about getting into the world of motorcycles. No licence is required and you do not need your own bike. On a closed course in a single afternoon, you’ll be introduced to motorcycle basics, get a feel for the ride experience, and figure out if motorcycle driving is something you want to try.
Gearing Up: M1 Exit is for those who want to take the first step in becoming a motorcycle driver. You’ll learn road basics and practice driving a motorcycle on a closed course, following the Canada Safety Council training curriculum. By the end of the three-day class, you’ll be ready to take the driving test required to move up to the M2 level of licensing.
M2 Exit and M2 Exit Preparation courses are for those getting ready to take their second road test to graduate to a full M class license. In the preparation class, spend one day in a classroom setting, going over the test requirements in detail and walking through the road test routes. For the full exit class, take three days to practice all skills that will be on the road test and make sure you have all the experience you need to successfully pass the test. Note that for the full exit class, you will need to provide your own safetied and road-ready bike.
Experienced Rider is our class for drivers who have had their M-class license for at least a full year, but want to brush up on their skills (and also have fun in a social riding environment). Riders should have at least 5000 km of riding experience and bring their own road-ready bike to join us as we review safety rules and regulations, and hit the road.
For any and all courses offered by the OSC, you’ll need the following equipment:
- DOT/SNELL/ECE approved motorcycle helmet
- Full face shield or other eye protection
- Heavy-weight, long-sleeved jacket and long pants
- Sturdy, low-heeled boots that cover your feet and ankles completely
- Full-fingered driving gloves
Full protective gear must be worn at all times during our classes when sitting on a motorcycle, even when the engine is off. If your equipment does not pass our standards, you may be asked to leave the course. Find out more about our requirements on our equipment page.
Spring is always the busiest time for motorcycle classes, so don’t delay! Get full details and contact us for availability on our courses page. We’re looking forward to seeing you and getting you off on your next road trip adventure.
Earn your RoadSMARTS
Learn more about road safety by taking the #RoadSMARTS pledge. By taking the Road SMARTS Pledge, you Support Making All Road Travel Safe, which can help improve road safety for everyone. When road behaviours change, accidents are reduced. For more information and to take the pledge for free, visit https://www.ottawasafetycouncil.ca/road-smarts.