Paying attention - Wrist Twisters
 
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post #1 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 12:23 AM Thread Starter
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Paying attention

I have been splitting lanes (ah, Los Angeles!) for over 35 years, but only recently noticed something interesting: While splitting, my eyes blink about once a mile. That's about every couple minutes. Trying this at home, it's about every 20 to 30 seconds maximum. I suppose this may be attributed in part to the good seal of the shield of my Shoei, but only partially. The only other time I've noticed this is when roadracing, where blinks correspond to straightaways. I suppose it may be if you blink you may miss something potentially life threatening, so you do it as little as possible. Or is it an indicator of concentration?
What do you think?

Rob

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On the other hand, if it has not been done never assume it is impossible to do it.
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post #2 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 03:46 AM
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Blinking plays the essential role of spreading the pre-corneal tear film. Improper blinking can lead to dry eye, which can be a severe problem for contact lens wearers. The blink rate of 91 subjects was measured under controlled experimental conditions. While the mean blink rate was 26.13 blinks/min, there was a marked intersubject variation. In a set of 19 subjects taken from the main sample, the blink rate measured under two other experimental conditions showed that the blink rate was high during conversation and then decreased during a classroom examination.

Another test shows that blink decreases as dopamine (dopamine has many functions in the brain, including important roles in behavior and cognition, motor activity, motivation and reward, regulation of milk production, sleep, mood, attention, and learning) levels decrease. So your dopamine levels may be sky high when riding!

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post #3 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 04:28 AM
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I'm too poor to pay attention.

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post #4 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 04:31 AM
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post #5 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 07:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robtharalson View Post
I have been splitting lanes (ah, Los Angeles!) for over 35 years, but only recently noticed something interesting: While splitting, my eyes blink about once a mile. That's about every couple minutes. Trying this at home, it's about every 20 to 30 seconds maximum. I suppose this may be attributed in part to the good seal of the shield of my Shoei, but only partially. The only other time I've noticed this is when roadracing, where blinks correspond to straightaways. I suppose it may be if you blink you may miss something potentially life threatening, so you do it as little as possible. Or is it an indicator of concentration?
What do you think?

Rob
Interesting observation. I noticed when I started racing karts, I would not breathe, or blink when things on the track were intense. This subsided some after a lot of track time. I always wondered if it were some kind of defense mechanism or straight up fear.

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post #6 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 07:47 AM
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Hmmmm...interesting observation. I'll have to try this.

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post #7 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 07:53 AM
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I would also like to add, the first time I visited California and saw someone lane splitting, I thought they must have been running from the cops. I can't believe it's legal... and I live in a state with no helmet law.

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post #8 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 08:07 AM
 
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I wear contacts sometimes or my specs and I have to say I like wearing my specs better based on when I have in my contacts they do try out faster with the wind plus not blinking as much...I used to work for a LASIK surgeon for about 5 years and boy the eye is an amazing thing that is for sure!!!

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post #9 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 09:30 PM
 
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Watch some in car WRC video, you will never see them blink ever, the whole time they look like they are an inch from slamming into a tree at 120mph...oh yeah...they are.


I think that when there is constant attention required, no blinking.

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post #10 of 12 Old 11-28-2007, 09:50 PM
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Marcus Grönholm never blinks.

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post #11 of 12 Old 11-29-2007, 11:23 PM Thread Starter
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Getting there

Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic11 View Post
I would also like to add, the first time I visited California and saw someone lane splitting, I thought they must have been running from the cops. I can't believe it's legal... and I live in a state with no helmet law.
Everywhere in the world where motorcycles are ridden in traffic, almost without exception, lane splitting is not only legal, it is absolutely normal. One of the few exceptions is most states in the United States, and I thank whatever supreme being you choose that California is not one of them. For as long as I can remember, riding on two wheels has been my preferred mode of transportation starting with the first bicycle from which dad refused to remove the training wheels, so I did it myself (lifelong mechanic as well!) at the age of 3 1/2, and finding that dangerous tip over prone monster suddenly made sense. You couldn't get me off it! Fast (yeah, lots of it) forward to 1970 and my first freeway legal motorcycle, a CB 350, which brought a revelation: lane splitting! I would intentionally go on rides during rush hour just to practice, and found not only that I was pretty good at it, but the intense concentration required was almost addictive -- you are definitely not thinking about anything else! Being absolutely in the moment, the hundreds of decisions per minute required, watching the dynamic of traffic flow, reading the intent of drivers sometimes before they know themselves, and being very well trained in the finer points of control of your motorcycle and how to put it exactly where you want it at any given moment, are just a few of the benefits of splitting -- well, that and getting where you wanted to go a hell of a lot faster. Personally, I know I'm a much better rider due in large part to the education I've received in the classroom of the jammed up freeway, and doubt if I would be as enthusiastic about riding if splitting were illegal.
Two quick examples of normal splitting: moving along about 15 to 20 MPH faster than traffic, came upon a gap to my right, which incidentally sets off alarm bells, and sure enough the car to my left makes a dive for it ... quick flick to the right just past the front bumper of that plumber's van, a small twist of the throttle to gain room, cutting left to skirt the far line and noticing the car has cut back into the fast lane, two fast downshifts while cutting back left to hit the gap ahead and giving a friendly wave (All five fingers, thank you! He noticed me and I appreciate it.), and put my hand back on the bar just in time to miss the mirror on my left. All in just over two seconds.
And my favorite maneuver: getting to the front of a red light, I'm blocked three cars ahead, so steer between two cars to the next lane over, get past the block and repeat in the other direction at about 2 MPH. Believe it or not, I got applause from a CHP motor officer who saw one of those.
So splitting can be potentially deadly or as safe as anything you do on a bike, it just depends on your skill and judgement.
Oh, yeah -- I'm planning a pair of narrow lane splitter / urban commute bars welded up in .083 wall seamless 316 stainless. Get back to you on them.

Rob

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post #12 of 12 Old 12-01-2007, 08:11 AM
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Kinda like using the force huh Luke?... I mean Rob.

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