How To Shift Motorcycle Gears: A Guide For Beginners

Before you can begin to enjoy the wind rushing through your hair as you zip down the open road on your motorcycle, you need to learn how to properly shift gears. For beginner riders, this process may seem daunting, but with a little practice, it will become second nature. Here is a guide on how to shift motorcycle gears for beginners.

Shift Gears On a Motorcycle

For beginners, you can follow these steps to shift gears on your motorcycle:

  • First, ensure that you are in the correct gear for the current speed and road conditions. Generally speaking, lower gears should be used for slower speeds and higher gears should be used for higher speeds.
  • Next, apply the clutch lever located on the left handlebar. This disengages the engine from the transmission, allowing you to shift gears.
  • Use your left foot to press down on the gear shift pedal located near the footrest. This will disengage the current gear and allow you to select the next one.
  • Once you have selected the desired gear, release the clutch lever and gear shift pedal and let the motorcycle slowly accelerate back up to speed.
  • Repeat these steps as necessary when confronted with different speeds and road conditions. With a little practice, you'll be shifting gears like a pro in no time!

If you still need more guidance, we’re included some techniques to help you below.

Shifting a Motorcycle From a Stop

First, it is important to engage the clutch before shifting gears. This will help to prevent the engine from stalling and make it easier to shift into the correct gear. Second, the rider should use their left foot to select the correct gear before slowly releasing the clutch and applying gas with their right hand. Finally, it is important to keep the bike balanced while stopped and avoid tipping it over. By following these simple steps, shifting gears on a motorcycle from a stop should be a breeze.


When you're ready to upshift on a motorcycle, there's a specific process you need to follow. First, close the throttle completely and apply the front brake. Then, push down on the shift lever with your toe to select the next higher gear. Finally, release the clutch lever slowly while simultaneously easing off the brake. As you do so, throttle slightly to match the engine speed. If done correctly, upshifting should be seamless and smooth.


When you're ready to slow down or stop, it's important to shift gears on your motorcycle. Here are a few things to keep in mind when downshifting: First, make sure you're in the correct gear for your speed and road conditions. Second, use the clutch lever to disengage the engine from the transmission. Third, use the shifter to select a lower gear. Fourth, slowly release the clutch lever as you give the throttle a light twist. Fifth, as you come to a stop, engage the clutch lever and select neutral gear. By following these simple steps, you can ensure smooth and safe gear shifting on your motorcycle.

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