Do not skimp on your protective gear. As other have said the gear should be snug not tight. The arms of your jacket should be a little longer than
normal as your shoulders are not usually in a vertical position while riding.
I cannot stress this enough, Top Grain Leather, not Split Grain, it costs a little more and is heavier, but it will protect you much better.
Wear good gloves, kevlar lined if possible.
Get a DOT approved brain bucket. None of that cool looking novelty garbage. Sure the DOT stuff makes your head look big but it will protect you in
the event of an incident and should keep everything where it belongs for the most part.
For riding footwear I love Chippewa long boots. They stay put and are built with a true arch which make mine as comfortable as sneakers.
Good pair of polarized riding glasses. Do not get regular sunglasses as they will allow wind into them and make you miserable. As a substitute,
military issue sunglasses like you see the marines wear will also work well as the are windproof but vented and highly impact resistant. They also
have interchangeable lenses for day, night or rain riding. As a bonus they can be had relatively inexpensively as compared to branded riding
As for riding, hold on with your legs and thighs.
Place your hands on the rider in front of you, don't grab.
If he looks to the left while turning.. so should you, it will automatically allow your body to lean the appropriate amount in that direction.
Do not turn your body to look at things around you since that upsets the stability of the bike.
If you need to scoot your rear around for comfort, tell the rider in front of you your intentions so that they can compensatae for your actions.
Above all, have fun, ride safe and keep the rubber side down.
edit on 8/23/11 by Papewayo because: typos and forgot some info.