HomeNewsArticle Display

Airman finds motocross racing ultimate 'stress reliever'

2nd Lt. Michael Reardon rides through a turn on his dirt bike during a race in Maize, Kan. Reardon is the deputy chief of program development with the 22nd Civil Engineer Squadron at McConnell Air Force Base, Kan.

2nd Lt. Michael Reardon rides through a turn on his dirt bike during a race in Maize, Kan. Reardon is the deputy chief of program development with the 22nd Civil Engineer Squadron at McConnell Air Force Base, Kan.

2nd Lt. Michael Reardon jumps on his dirt bike, Dec. 15, 2013, during a race in Maize, Kan. Reardon is the deputy chief of program development with the 22nd Civil Engineer Squadron at McConnell Air Force Base, Kan. Motocross is one of many outdoor activities Reardon engages himself in, including: snowboarding, competitive pistol shooting and team sports.

2nd Lt. Michael Reardon jumps on his dirt bike, Dec. 15, 2013, during a race in Maize, Kan. Reardon is the deputy chief of program development with the 22nd Civil Engineer Squadron at McConnell Air Force Base, Kan. Motocross is one of many outdoor activities Reardon engages himself in, including: snowboarding, competitive pistol shooting and team sports.

2nd Lt. Michael Reardon poses in front of a race track in Maize, Kan. He is the deputy chief of program development with the 22nd Civil Engineer Squadron at McConnell Air Force Base, Kan. Reardon has competed in motocross races for nearly three years and has been riding since he was 10 years old.

2nd Lt. Michael Reardon poses in front of a race track in Maize, Kan. He is the deputy chief of program development with the 22nd Civil Engineer Squadron at McConnell Air Force Base, Kan. Reardon has competed in motocross races for nearly three years and has been riding since he was 10 years old.

MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan. (AFNS) -- His heart is racing and his entire nervous system is pulsing with adrenalin. He revs the engine of his dirt bike easing the tension before the race begins. This rider isn't a full-time member of motocross circuit, but a McConnell AFB officer who uses the sport as the ultimate stress reliever.

2nd Lt. Michael Reardon's involvement with motocross provides him with more than a source of weekend thrills; it's an effective stress reliever.As the 22nd Civil Engineer Squadron's deputy chief of program development, he sees the sport as the perfect adrenalin rush.

"As soon as that gate drops, your body is so full of energy," said Reardon. "You can just ride on forever.

"If I'm stressed out from work or have too much on my plate," said Reardon "I can always just load up my bike and relieve some of that stress on the track. I get in my own little world and don't have to worry about anything else that's going on."

People often ask Reardon why he participates in such a high risk activity. He usually replies "it's only dangerous if you let it be dangerous. The sport is much safer if you don't exceed your own limits."

'Staying within your limits' is a concept that Reardon's stepfather, John Blakely, emphasized when teaching his children to ride. It may have influenced Reardon in acquiring his conservative riding style.

"I have always been very careful as to how I approached the sport with regard to my children," said Blakely. "This sport isn't basketball; you can really get hurt or die, so it's imperative to ride smart and safe. I taught him about how to approach difficult track obstacles objectively."

According to Blakely, Reardon has experienced quite a few crash and burns throughout his 14 years of dirt biking, yet he never experienced a serious injury.

Growing up with a background in motocross has provided Reardon with a series of life lessons that continue on today.

"This hobby requires intense focus and mastery," Reardon said. "Each type of jump and turn, you begin to master them at different speeds. If you're going too fast your riding is going to get all 'out of wack' and the same goes for your work."

To improve his technique and receive feedback, Reardon sends his stepfather videos taken from a camera attached to his helmet.

"Michael would not only listen to my advice, he would actually remember to use it on the track," said Blakely. "That quality and some good luck have gone a long way in keeping him safe."

Another element that has attracted Reardon to the world of motocross is its sense of community. Racers often have hours to wait between racing events - plenty of time to meet fellow competitors and spectators.

"It's nice to know that in this community, people are pretty accepting of you, regardless of your origins," said Reardon. "I find myself meeting all kinds of people from different backgrounds"

Motocross is only one of the outlets Reardon sought out for recreation. He also snowboards, shoots pistols competitively, and has a history with soccer, football and track and field. He pushes other Airmen to find their own forte.

"I like to encourage my Airmen to come out and find something that they like to do, and it doesn't necessarily mean that they should hop on a bike," said Reardon. "I just think it's healthy for them to take their minds off work and get involved with something outside of the base."

Whether it is motocross or collecting stamps, a hobby requires some form of investment. According to Reardon's philosophy, a little devotion can go a long ways.

"There's commitment everywhere, whether it's with your work, hobbies, family and relationships," said Reardon "so don't be afraid to be committed to something. You'll have highs and lows, but ultimately if you stick with your commitment it's going to be beneficial and rewarding to you in the end."

Engage

Twitter
“It is good to remember how we got here and what it took for the previous generations to fight the battle of lettin… https://t.co/9gc1e2iaLd
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: When #Airmen are empowered, nothing should stand in their way of making positive change. #acceleratechangeorlose https://…
Twitter
Ending the spread of #COVID19 https://t.co/PCPw2vufLS
Twitter
Chaplain (Maj.) Gabriel Rios assumed the #AirForce's 1st stole at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas. The stole represents… https://t.co/BcgHvsKwjM
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: Digital engineering is helping the Air & Space Forces, along with defense partners, field programs smarter & faster. The…
Twitter
“I saw my wingmen with families and young kids and didn’t want them to have to be away for too long, so I decided i… https://t.co/7lsjIymSyx
Twitter
"[Dr. Victoria Coleman] brings a wealth of expertise in both academia and industry. She recognizes that pushing the… https://t.co/73Otu5znlQ
Twitter
A Virtual Teen Camp will offer an introduction to aviation, and career and leadership opportunities within the… https://t.co/Hn0XBDu5uH
Twitter
The Three Dimensional Expeditionary Long-Range Radar program office at @Hanscom_AFB, Massachusetts, is currently ut… https://t.co/kppBPFby6h
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: The review we conducted last year, & the follow up efforts we’ve taken since, have really opened the door to meaningful,…
Twitter
Take a look at the most recent Week in Photos! Which one is your favorite? More at: https://t.co/HYMo58J8u6 https://t.co/VCR3yRicIl
Twitter
RT @USAFCENT: F-16s get topped off with fuel by a KC-135 while supporting CJTF-OIR, where the main mission is to Defeat Da'esh. #FightToWin
Twitter
.@146AirliftWing Airmen administer #COVID19 vaccines to military dependents at the Channel Islands Air National Gua… https://t.co/1Zq9vmf9w2
Twitter
RT @AFSpecOpsCmd: Global coordination with its finest 💥 During HIMARS and HIRAIN training, Air Commandos and @USMC successfully proved the…
Twitter
Today is National #FormerPOWRecognitionDay. This day honors the captured wartime service members who eventually cam… https://t.co/pIRIXAS6f7
Twitter
RT @SecAFOfficial: #TeamWhiteman welcomed Acting Secretary Roth today, where the base’s leadership & #Airmen showcased the unique capabilit…
Twitter
RT @AirNatlGuard: .@TXMilitary Airmen with the @149FW Med Group operate a COVID-19 vaccination clinic at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland. T…
Twitter
Demonstrating the United States' commitment to providing #AirPower, stability and support around the globe at a mom… https://t.co/x8OLgaJmqO
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,341,634
Follow Us