Understanding and using the limit point

To ride safely we must be able to stop on our own side of the road, in the distance we can see to be clear.

When looking at a bend ahead, perspective makes it seem as if the two sides of the road converge, meeting at a point in the distance. This is the ‘limit point’. A point which we can use as an invaluable tool to help us plan how to approach and negotiate the bend.

The movement of that limit point is telling us what is happening with the road ahead and enables us to appropriately adjust our travelling speed for the upcoming bend.

  • If the limit point is coming closer or standing still we need to slow down or brake.
  • If the limit point is staying the same distance from us, the bend is remaining constant and we can maintain our current speed.
  • If the point is moving further away, the road is straightening out and we can accelerate – while remaining within the posted speed limit.

Other valuable information can help ensure that progress through the bend is fluid and safe. Seek as much information as possible through observations of the weather conditions, signage, road surface, road markings and traffic.

The line made by street lights or roadside trees gives us an indication of the angle of the bend, as can the angle of oncoming vehicle headlights at night.

A video from RoSPA is available which discusses limit points:


Wednesday, 28 September 2022