There are five regions of the state of Maryland of interest to bikers. The eastern shores have beaches and serenity not found in other parts of the state, the Capital region is home to our federal government and has many historical places to visit, the central part of the state features gently rolling hills, the southern part of the state has pristine nature preserves, and the western region has lakes and the Appalachian Mountains. But to explore this diverse state in the best way possible you’ll need to first get your motorcycle license and that means passing the state required written test.

One of the best ways to gain the knowledge you’ll need to prepare for the exam and ride safely is to first pick up a copy of the official Maryland Motorcycle Operator’s Handbook . The handbook contains an overview of what you need to know to ride your motorcycle safely in the state of Maryland.

Preparing With the MD Motorcycle Manual

While the handbook is a fantastic place to start on your journey towards a Maryland motorcycle license, we also recommend that you take advantage of the motorcycle practice tests available on this site.  The Maryland Motorcycle Practice Tests will help simulate what you would experience on test day at your local Maryland MVA office.  Combine the handbook with the practice tests and should be well on your way towards enjoying the freedom that a motorcycle license in Maryland can offer.

Topics Covered in the Manual

 The Maryland Motorcycle Handbook is a publication of the Maryland MVA Motor Vehicle Administration with assistance from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation and covers the following subjects:

  • Getting Ready to Ride
    • Essential gear – helmet, eye protection, clothing
    • Understanding your motorcycle
    • Know your responsibilities
  • How to Ride Within Your Abilities
    • Basic vehicle control –body position, shifting gears, braking, turning
    • Safely Keeping Your Distance
    • S.E.E
    • Intersection – blind, passing parked cars, parking at the roadside
    • Increasing you visibility to others – clothes, lights, signals, mirrors, horn
    • Crash avoidance
    • How to deal with dangerous surfaces – uneven, slippery, railroad tracks, grooves, gratings
    • Mechanical problems – tire failure, throttle, wobble, chain problems, engine seizure
    • Road hazards – animals and flying objects
    • Leaving the road safely
    • Carrying passengers and cargo safely and effectively
    • Learning to ride in groups
  • Being in Shape to Ride
    • Alcohol/drugs and your motorcycle
    • Alcohol and your body – blood alcohol concentration
    • Alcohol and the law
    • Recognizing and dealing with fatigue
  • Earning Your License
    • The Knowledge test
    • On-motorcycle skill test