Well, now is your chance to do so.  But make no mistake, the idea may make your mouth water but the reality, however, may not be quite what you expected.  The route to becoming one of our club's observers is long and demanding.

To become an Observer involves a whole series of attributes that not everyone possesses.  Mainly it centres on commitment and the will to succeed. Good intentions alone will not be enough; in addition to commitment and the will to succeed you will need:-

  • High standard of riding in all conditions
  • Good communications skills
  • Ability to adapt to change
  • Ability to identify riding faults and suggest how to remedy them
  • Current paid-up membership of EKAM and IAM

Still interested – read on

To be eligible to take the IMI Local Observer Assessment you must:

  • Hold a full Motorcycle licence Category A
  • Meet the DVLA standard for medical fitness to ride, including the statutory eyesight requirement
  • Ensure you have complied with IAM and legal requirements to report any change in your status as a rider e.g. convictions, medical conditions
  • Be a current Full Member of the IAM
  • Be a Member of an IAM affiliated Group (EKAM)
  • Be familiar with the content of both the “Highway Code” (HC) and “How to be a Better Rider” (HTBABR) publications
  • Have the approval of your Local Group Committee

 The IMI Local Observer Assessment criterion is split into 5 sections:

  1. Attitude – This allows you demonstrate your general attitude to riding safely
  2. Riding Skills – Ride to IAM Test Standard at all times and demonstrate knowledge of HC and HTBABR
  3. Demonstration Skills – Demonstrate your advanced riding skills to illustrate the standard required
  4. Observer Skills – Work closely with the associate and respect the associates wishes during your mentoring to Advanced Test standard
  5. Organisational Skills and Knowledge – Be able to assist the associate with questions on the Group and IAM.

Conceptual Model of the Route to Becoming an EKAM Local Observer

  • Pass IAM Advanced Riding Test
  • Ride to a higher standard than that required to pass the IAM RoadSmart Advanced Riding Test
  • Speak with the Chief Observer and have a Mentor allocated to you
  • Attend training ride-outs with Observer (Mentor) and Associate
  • Attend ITAM during Observer training
  • Attend Observer Training programme
  • Attend monthly Observer meetings regularly
  • Register and prepare for IMI Local Observer assessment
  • Check run with Chief Observer and Associate
  • Arrange IMI Local Observer assessment
  • Join Observer Corp on successful completion

NB. To become an Observer can take many months.

Observer Coaching Guidelines

To become an efficient Observer you will need the following abilities:-

  • Know and demonstrate the standard required to pass IAM test
  • Ride at a high level at all times
  • Have a good knowledge of the Highway Code, How to be a Better Rider and Roadcraft
  • Analyse Associates' riding e.g. position, bends, overtakes, etc.
  • Identify faults/issues and be able recommend remedies to overcome these
  • To select specifics from ride to de-brief and discuss
  • Be positive towards the associate at all times
  • To criticise constructively, develop and encourage the associate
  • Communicate facts and details of observed points
  • Question and listen to the answer
  • Recognise the need to refer
  • Recognise that we are all fallible

Trainee Observer's Commitments:-

  • An average of two Saturdays/training runs per month (March-November) – a minimum of 10 Observed Training Runs a year to maintain your qualification
  • Observers' meetings - Monthly on 1st Monday of the month
  • Club meetings - third Wednesday each month

On a Lighter Note...

  • Social meetings - barbecue, dinner, treasure hunt etc. which occur 3 or 4 occasions each year (optional but fun)
  • Sunday ride-outs
  • Occasional written article for Club magazine (Observer Comments)
  • Be prepared to represent the IAM and EKAM at local events (optional and can also be fun)