3 Techniques You Should Pay More Attention To When Learning How To Drive

AUGUST 27, 2014

Is it getting a little overwhelming as there is a barrage of theory and practical lessons coming your way? Novice drivers who have just started out their lessons can relate to this well. However, instructors and experienced drivers alike, assure that there is nothing to be stressed about. For starters, you just need to keep in mind the 3 following driving techniques while lessons are ongoing.

The deal with steep hills

The key is to engage your handbrakes to prevent the car from rolling backwards or forwards while you try to engage the correct pedals during an uphill or downhill start. Make a mental list of the following points:

  1. While preparing to start the car, always pull up your handbrakes first.
  2. Step on your brakes and clutch, all the way down for both, and shift the stick into first gear.
  3. Apply enough pressure to your gas pedal (accelerator) until the engine is significantly louder than starting on a flat road.
  4. Release the clutch up to its biting point (the point where the engine starts to connect with the wheels, giving �hovering� feel).
  5. Now keep both of your feet still!
  6. Carry out your usual safety checks. Make sure blind spots are clear and your mirrors show the same too.
  7. Release the handbrake very gently � no more than a few millimetres.

If the car starts to nudge from its stationary position, keep both feet still and pull the handbrake back up again. Take the opportunity to re-adjust, double check that the road is still clear, and then try again. Repeat this until you have full control.

Checking of blind spots

A blind spot is an area that can�t be seen in your mirrors as it may be partially blocked by your car�s structure. For example, the pillar behind your driver�s seat makes it hard to spot a distant object, such as a motorcycle tailgating you. When moving off, turning or changing lanes, the blind spots behind your left and right shoulders are critical. You only need to turn your heads, not your entire upper torso, to check your blind spots.

Cultivate decisive decision-making habits

There are three distinct choices that you can make in any situation.

  • GO
  • STOP
  • UNSURE � Slow down

Most of time, there will be visible signs telling you that it�s clear to go. Especially, if the roads have been clear for more than 3 seconds. When the traffic lights turn green, the path in front is clear and there are no incoming pedestrians or vehicles, you�re good to go.

There are instances when the traffic light will turn red. It is a clear indication that you need to stop your vehicle from moving forward. There will also be physical STOP signs to tell drivers to slow to a halt.

Sometimes you may feel uncomfortable in certain road situations. Once that feeling comes, it is always good to slow down and give other drivers more time to react. Once any confusion or uncertainty has been lifted, you may resume driving at normal speeds.

Remember that the aforementioned are more like safety tips for driving, and it doesn�t guarantee you a 100% pass rate. You will still have to hone your practical skills to become a competent driver.