Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: San Antonio, TX & Moosehead Lake, ME
I'll add my two cents for what it's worth. Years ago I was an MSF instructor (while on active duty in the USAF) and thought the basic course was worthy of attending; however, over the years the focus seems to have changed in the MSF and now you find "rider coaches" rather than instructors. Unfortunately, demands of the USAF didn't allow me to continue as an MSF instructor after being reassigned, and after some time away from the program I found I wasn't comfortable with the program alterations. Perhaps I was influenced by my long time friend who was an instructor, a chief instructor, and ultimately one who educated the chief instructors; he left the ranks for the same reasons.
Both my wife and I took the MSF Basic Rider's Course as a refresher (and to avoid the state DMV fiasco) about ten years ago, after a few years away from two wheels, and thought it was good but the end result is that it doesn't go much beyond teaching a new rider how to maneuver slowly in a parking lot without having to intermingle with traffic, pedestrians, stray animals, road work crews, and such.
Are rider courses worth the expenditure of time and money? All in all, I imagine they are though successfully completing one is only the beginning of a long and safe riding career. Perhaps it can be compared with completing military basic training and then immediately being transferred to a combat zone. Now the fun begins!
"Plan? Plan! There ain't no plan."
Pig Killer, Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome