2022/1/23  
Motorcycle school welcomes big rise in middle-aged and retired students (2022/01/14)
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  • 英文 English 
    Motorcycle school welcomes big rise in middle-aged and retired students (2022/01/14)

    With the pandemic shutting Taiwan off from the world, many people who might otherwise go traveling are looking for new places to spend their energy. For some middle-aged and retired folks, that means fulfilling long-mothballed ambitions. We made a trip to a motorcycle school in New Taipei that's had a windfall of older students. Lots of middle-aged people who never had time to learn before are now determined to get in the saddle.

    Changing gears while hitting the accelerator, Mr. Liao廖 works in delivery. Now 46, he’s just acquired a new motorcycle for a cool NT$500,000. On his days off, he goes to riding school. He can’t wait to get his license and take to the open road.

    Mr. Liao
    Motorcycle student
    It'll be more convenient to go out and have fun, and there’ll be less traffic too.

    Mr. Lai retired last year. Almost 60, the Taoyuan native also comes to this motorcycle class in Banqiao District, New Taipei. He’s dreaming of a round-the-island tour.

    Mr. Lai
    Motorcycle student
    I’ve always wanted to ride a motorcycle all round the island. I saw people riding motorcycles when I was young and it seemed so cool.

    The pandemic and Taiwan’s closed borders made many people slow down and rethink their lives. That’s led lots of middle-aged folk to renew their passion for youthful dreams like bikes. This motorcycle school has a 50% uptick in enrollments, with lots more students in their fifties and sixties. In December they bought new bikes to cater to that demographic.

    Chen Po-ting
    Motorcycle riding instructor
    The seat height is about 8 centimeters lower than the typical seat height.

    The first test is riding round a circle. Then you must ride along a beam for more than seven seconds. Finally there’s changing gears and swerving. Students practice all these moves over and over again. When they fall, they get up and start over.

    Chen Tzung-min
    Motorcycle riding instructor
    We had a gentleman over 70 years old come to our class and get his license. He said he wasn’t planning to go out on his bike, he just wanted to get the license, which was something he’d wanted to achieve his whole life.

    Lots of these students have reached a point in life where they have more money and free time than they had in their youth. It’s an unexpected windfall for motorcycle schools, who never thought their student body would shift this way. The pandemic exerts its strange devices once again.
    中文 Chinese  
    疫情難出國改圓重機夢!駕訓班5.60歲學員激增

    您有看過電影的不老騎士嗎? 一場疫情打亂了民眾出國規劃,卻也讓人多了閒錢和時間,可以完成年輕時的夢想,有重機駕訓班就說,疫情後來學重機的學員多了5成,其中又以50到60歲族群增加最多,為此駕訓班去年底特地砸錢買了一台專屬教練車,讓銀髮族也能安心練車。

    左腳快速打檔,右手油門催落去,從事運輸業,今年46歲的廖先生,最近剛入手一台50多萬的重機,趁著休假,趕緊來上駕訓課程,迫不及待想拿到重機駕照,完成追風夢想。

    [[重機駕訓班學員 廖先生]]
    “出去玩也比較方便,各方面也比較不會塞車”

    年近60歲的賴先生,去年剛退休,就算家住桃園,也要特地來板橋上重機駕訓班,拿到重機駕照後,最想做的事是環島。

    [[重機駕訓班學員 賴先生]]
    “一直都很想騎重機環島,因為年輕的時候看人家騎重機,我覺得很帥”

    一場疫情邊境封閉,讓不少人停下腳步,重新思索生命的意義,因此有一群壯年人打算完成年少的追風夢想,駕訓班觀察到,來學重機的人多了五成,其中50到60歲學員明顯增加,因此去年12月,特地引進專屬機型。

    [[重機駕訓班教練 陳柏廷]]
    “它的座高相較於一般駕訓班的座高,大概再低了8公分左右”

    從第一關定圓行駛,到騎上平衡木,至少維持7秒以上才過關,最後是換檔及繞道關卡,每個環節,都不斷重複,就算跌倒了,也要爬起來再繼續。

    [[重機駕訓班教練 陳琮閔]]
    “有一個70多歲的阿伯,他有來上課,考駕照,他說他考完車是沒有要去騎的,他只是為了要擁有,重型機車駕照,滿足他這輩子的成就感”

    有錢有閒的年紀,讓不老騎士與日俱增,也意外造就重機產業的產值大爆發,從駕訓班到重機產品以及周邊消費品,都成為疫情下的受惠者。
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