Drive 4 Your Life For Parents
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Drive 4 Your Life Curriculum Concepts
  Drive 4 Your LIfe

The driving curriculum focuses mainly on two basic important categories:

  • Vehicle weight, transition and balance experience for example
    • We allow drivers to experience how weight, transition and balance affects skids, and how management of the same can be used to recover from skids, but more importantly how to recognize the warning signs of an impending skid and modify their behavior. Mastering these basic concepts creates a solid foundation for driving and potentially saves lives by hopefully avoiding a skid, but if it happens, automatically reacting to an action that typically throws a driver into a panic.

Expanding on this principal, a skid pad is the best place to master skids, but is not totally a real-world experience – there is more to it. The secondary motion in a skid is probably more important from a fatality perspective and doesn’t occur on a skid pad. Remember Newton’s third law, for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. What does this mean in the realm of driving concepts? When your vehicle begins to skid, the rear wheels are stepping out of line with the front wheels one direction or the other. The proper response is to steer in the direction of the skid, which slows then stops that motion. At this point, the rear wheels of the vehicle begin to swing back the other way, at a faster rate than the initial skid. Without the knowledge that this is going to happen, by the time this part of the skid is recognized it is too late. Anticipation of the event is the key here, and with the rapid steer in the opposite direction of the first event, the motion can be completely stopped and control can be regained. While the first action, the initial skid, could be something young people might learn quickly, the secondary skid action would definitely be beyond their beginner skill level. After the basic skill of a skid is learned, the more difficult piece is introduced with the use of two skid pads hooked together in a figure 8. THAT is real world, and that is the premise that we use to develop exercises that build on a solid foundation.

  • Preventative Thinking
    • The second category in the curriculum is preventative thinking. It is a recognition and understanding about the meaning of personal and vehicle limits. If a young driver through experience in our school recognizes that their reaction time, for example, needs more focus and concentration than they anticipated, that knowledge can actually bring about a modification of driving habits. The vehicle limits can best be described as that moment in the rain when the steering wheel feels very light, and we know that we are experiencing the potential for hydroplaning. Through experience, we modify our speed. Recognition of both of these circumstances and the resulting modification in driving habits reduces exponentially the circumstance above called reaction. Remember, when vehicle balance and available traction become questionable, bad things happen. This part of the class helps beginner drivers understand the warning signs and the consequences of their reaction or lack thereof.
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