The Importance of Clear Communication Between You and Your Driving Instructor
The reasons for choosing a driving instructor are manifold. Whether you’re looking to abolish bad habits, reduce your auto insurance rates, or have a ticket dismissed in court, there are all kinds of reasons why you might seek out professional driving instruction. However, one thing that you must realize, is that not all driving instructors are created the same. In fact, some are much better than others, and the practical skills that you gain from driving instruction are only as good as the instructor themselves. For that reason, it pays to learn how to choose the instructor who is right for you.
When you’re choosing an instructor, ask to take a test drive with them. Any worth his or her salt will definitely allow this, and if they don’t, it’s a pretty good sign that you ought to be suspicious. On this test drive, there are a few things you ought to look out for.
For instance, an instructor ought to be able to keep up a dialogue with you that tells you what to do in order to drive safely and properly but without making you nervous. In other words, their instructions to you should be clear and precise, but they should have the feel of a conversation rather than a drill sergeant. If you aren’t comfortable, then you’re going to be too nervous to really process these instructions, and that can be quite dangerous.
Secondly, they should be able to precisely examine the mechanics of the vehicle that you’re operating. They should have good advice regarding things like how to shift gears, how to change lands, proper steering, and even the right way to use a pedal (in other words, there’s more to it than just stomping down as hard as you can!).
Lastly, of course, you should get the impression from your instructor that they’re putting your needs first. Part of this means that they should be in tune with you, and able to operate “on the same wavelength”. Just as you meet some people who you get along well with right off the bat and others who it’s a struggle to even comfortably be around, you want your instructor to be someone who relaxes you and meshes with your personality. They should be able to tell when you’re nervous of lacking confidence, and help bolster your courage without distracting you from the road itself. Moreover, they should be willing to listen to any questions you might ask, and have the ability to respond to them accurately and with sensitivity.
Ultimately, the technical expertise of a driving instructor is a very important consideration, but it must take a back seat to certain other matters such as their ability to effectively communicate with you. The reality is that learning to drive is a two way effort, not a one-sided lecture. Unless the communication is there, your lessons will just not be effective.
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