Leather jackets, cool shades, and of course a beast of a bike, just how cool are bikers! Some of us grow up watching these guys riding in style and dream that one day maybe we could pull off that level of swag.

It’s not just about getting the look right but nailing the attitude! Have you ever seen two bikers passing by giving each other a ‘wave’? Yeah, it’s just a wave. But when they do it, it’s just so cool to watch! And, how come they all seem to share this special wave without even knowing each other? 


Well, there’s a little story behind the ‘wave’ after all. Back in 1904, Arthur Davidson passed William Harley and they waved, just as anyone would do if they saw someone they knew. For the passerby who witnessed this incident, it was more than just a polite gesture. He had seen the ‘Motorcycle Gods’ exchange a wave that he assumed was a biker necessity. The rest, as they say, was history.   

Little did Arthur Davidson and William Harley know that they were creating history with the wave.

The ‘Wave’ is now very much a core aspect of biker etiquette. It’s a simple way for motorcyclists to acknowledge each other on the road, a means to appreciate the passion they share. Over the years the wave took on several forms. If you ever want to try your hand at the wave, here are few notes for you to look cool!

You can’t go wrong with this general wave. Keep your arm extended at 10-degrees higher than your shoulder level and show your full palm in either a vertical or horizontal position to the oncoming rider. Make sure you don’t stiffen up and stay relaxed when you wave. 

For this wave, you should keep the elbow slightly lower than shoulder level, bent at about an 80-degree angle with the forearm extending slightly forward. With the palm facing the oncoming rider, you can either keep the arm still or use a side-to-side motion.

A.K.A the Harley or cruiser wave. Extend your arm down towards the street at a 45-degree angle, with one, two, three, or five fingers extended. Make sure the palm either faces the other rider or the road. You can also use a thumbs up or peace sign. 

This wave is usually used by bikers who are cruising past. You can barely see this one due to the speed of the bike. Just raise your left hand from the grip, a couple of inches, show the palm, and back to the grip. Execute the whole movement in under 3 seconds and you’re good to go.

Even Barney knows the importance of The Wave.