According to studies, one in five young people are involved in a car accident within their first year of driving. A significant proportion of this one in five are then banned from driving for anywhere between just a few months and a few years, which is the last thing any driving beginner wants. Not only will this send insurance sky rocketing, but it means that your parents will take some persuading to let you get back behind the wheel again.
With many of working from home it means that it might have been a little while since you’ve driven a car. If you’re new to driving and are worrying about joining the one in five, or if you haven’t driven a car for a long time and need a refresher, we’ve created this handy guide for putting those nerves at ease. Here are our top tips for improving your driving.
Go Back to the Basics and Focus on Your Driving
It may sound obvious but plenty of us panic behind the wheel. The worst thing that you can is panic and it’s important that you remember that it’s you who is in control and it’s you who can get you in or out of a situation. A good tip is to focus on your driving rather than whatever is worrying you.
Be smooth on the brakes, be smooth turning and be smooth while you accelerate. If anything, it is better to be slow than fast, and don’t worry about upsetting other drivers by being too slow. Stick to the speed limits and never tailgate, as this can cause an accident.
Get in the Right Headspace
As we have mentioned above, panicking is one of the worst things that you can do in the car. So, it’s important to get your head in the right space before you start driving. If you are generally an anxious person or if the thought of getting behind the wheel makes you sweat, we would recommend meditating in the morning before you drive. This will calm you down and while you’re driving you’ll find it easier to return to that place of calm. In fact, meditating has actually been shown to improve your mindful driving.
Another practical way of getting yourself in the right headspace is to remove any distractions while in the car. The last thing you need is any distractions while accelerating down a busy slip road, is an annoying trinket getting in your eyeline. Removing any distractions should ensure that you stay focused while driving.
Take a Few Practical Steps
If you just can’t get your driving up to the standard that you require, we would recommend taking a few practical steps that can quickly improve your standard of driving. These include making sure that your mirrors are in the correct place – you would be surprised how many people fail their test because they don’t check their mirrors before setting off. Other solutions include getting an eye test as poor eyesight will one day cause an accident, and if you still aren’t confident, then you can book another learner driver course online. The other alternative is to use a dash cam.
Why Should I Use a Dash Cam?
Dash Cams are designed to continuously record you while you drive either through the front window, or through the rear window. They automatically store footage, before deleting it when the storage becomes too full. If you have an accident or if you want to store the footage permanently, press the middle button and the footage will instantly be saved forever. Below, we explain why using a dash cam can improve your driving:
- Record Your mistakes: The number one way in car cameras can improve your driving is by recording your errors. Most dash cams, such as the ones sold at Nextbase, will automatically store any footage that you tell it to. This means that when you get home you can watch your drive home and examine any errors that you make. You can explore patterns in your driving behaviour, and you can work out where you’re going wrong on the road.
- Proof of an accident: If you tend to let speed get the better of yourself, then using a dash cam means that you can be more of a cautious driver. You probably won’t speed out of a corner if you know that there’ll evidence of any accident that you cause.
- Use by a driving instructor: If you’re a driving instructor then using a dash cam is a great way to point out errors to your student. Record their errors and send any mistakes through to them after their lesson.
- Please your parents: Finally, we all want to impress our parents when we first get behind the wheel. It’s a big step, and you can bet your parents will be the first to let you know if you’re driving is below par. Use a dash cam either to keep an eye on your kids or to prove to your parents that you know what you’re doing.
Treat Driving with the Respect it Deserves
The last tip that we have to improve your driving is to pay it the respect that it deserves. We recommend that you always obey the speed limit, and be cautious that dangerous whether conditions can quickly lead to an accident. If you’re driving on snow or ice, or if you’re driving on wet concrete, then remember to adjust your speed and driving style accordingly.
Similarly, you need to remember that often it’s not yourself that you have to worry about, it’s other drivers. If you notice anyone driving erratically, or if anyone is too close to you, drive more cautiously than you usually would.
Don’t Overthink It
It’s easy to overthink driving, but you should remember that billions of people drive across the world. If you are still worried or you think you aren’t up to scratch, then take a few reminder lessons from a professional to help get you back up to speed.