One of the things learner drivers get most stressed about when preparing for their driving test is manoeuvres. Whether it’s parallel parking or reversing around corners. Everyone gets the fear about something. And like it or not, the only way to get to grips with manoeuvres is to practice. So, where and when should you be doing all of this practicing?

When and Where to Practice Driving Manoeuvres

The thing about practicing anything that you might be anxious about is that to start with, you need to have a little privacy. So:

When

  • Avoid peak driving hours. If you want to learn well, select a time when you’re not going to get in the way of other drivers. Peak commuting periods will never deliver a relaxed driving experience for any kind of learning.
  • If you’re practicing in a residential area, be careful to chose times when you’re not going to cause a disruption. While it’s a great idea to learn manoeuvres in all conditions, including at night, it’s not fair to be driving in quiet areas when you might disturb people.
  • Don’t practice in one place for too long if you’re likely to cause an obstruction.

Where

  • Manoeuvres aren’t anything to be afraid of. But it will help you to learn if you can find a quiet side street to practice in. This helps you to learn the basics without losing your cool. Because even the best of us will feel flustered if we find ourselves trying to perform a reverse park with traffic queuing on both sides of the road.
  • Don’t stick to the same place when you’re practicing. You need to be able to perform all aspects of driving carefully and confidently in whatever scenarios you find yourself. So, while it’s a good idea to start off in quiet streets, it shouldn’t be the same quiet street every time.
  • When you’re first starting out, consider using supermarket car parks out of hours to get to grips with bay parking and reverse parking. As your confidence grows, you can try again during opening hours.
  • Finally, try to avoid practicing in known driving test routes. This is simply a matter of courtesy. Can you imagine trying to parallel park on your own test, then being confronted by another learner trying to do the same thing? And maybe watching as they hash it up? Nightmare distraction! Both for them, and you.

Manoeuvres can feel like a bit of mystery for many learner drivers. And the more you delay and avoid practicing, the scarier the prospect can become. A good driving instructor will always help to demystify all aspects of driving. But you know what they say: practice makes perfect.

So, give it a go in your own time (with appropriate supervision, obviously!). You’ll soon find that emergency stops, reversing around corners and rejoining traffic will lose much of their dread.