What is a motorcycle club and why be part of one?

Everyone has seen a group of bikers cruising down the highway, all wearing leather vests with matching insignia. Did you ever wonder what that is all about? The answer may be simpler than you think.

Firstly, there are a few key aspects that should be discussed. The first of these are that I will not be discussing one percenter (1%) motorcycle clubs, as these clubs are rumoured to take part in illicit and illegal activities. The second is that this discussion is based on the motorcycle club lifestyle in South Africa, and may not accurately portray that from other parts of the world.

In brief, a motorcycle club is merely a group of family, friends or acquaintances who choose to ride together and choose to signify this group with a name and an emblem. In most cases it only takes a few riders to start a club, and the requirements to do so are minimal in places such as South Africa.

There are one of two ways to become part of a club here. The first is to join a preexisting club. In such an instance a rider may have to endure a prospect or appyship period, in which the rider will have to earn their cut. The severity and duration of this varies from club to club.

The second way of becoming part of a club is to start a new club. The requirements of starting a club is different in every region. If you wish to start your own club, please make sure that you meet all the requirements that may be set in order to avoid repercussions.

In both cases there are some roles that are to be portrayed by members of the club. These roles include, but are not limited to the Club President, Vice-President, Sargent at Arms and Road Captain. The president oversees the administration of the club in all of its aspects. This includes registration of the club and members to a governing body, where it may be applicable. The Vice-President portrays a similar role to the president and is the second in command. The Sargent at Arms is responsible for maintaining discipline and order in a club. If a member steps out of line, it is the job of the Sargent at Arms to reprimand such an individual. The Road captain is responsible for the safety of the club on the road. Such as stopping traffic to allow the club safe passage and reprimanding riders that are riding dangerously.

Whichever way you choose to be part of a club, the purpose is to have solidarity between riders in attending events, or supporting communities and each other. A club forms part of the bond between brothers (and sisters) who choose to saddle their iron steeds.

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