I believe that God has given me gifts and talents; something of significance to say to young people that inspires, informs and instructs them to make smarter more informed decisions in life
Reverend John McMahon of Motov8 is not your average motivational speaker. He uses his love of motorcycles and racing to connect with today’s younger generation, discussing difficult and important topics using principals of motorbike racing in analogies for everyday life.
Rev. McMahon was a chaplain to MotoGP and World Superbikes. It was there that his dream became clearer – he wanted to combine his passion for motorbikes with his passion for helping young people. So it was with plenty of planning, hard work and the advice of good people around him that Rev. McMahon was able to make this dream a reality and Motov8 was born.
While Rev. McMahon was faced with the difficulties of venturing from a full-time high school chaplaincy role into creating Motov8, he has persevered with the encouragement and advice of those around him who believe in his concept and by learning from mistakes he has made along the way. His dedication and faith have been an important factor in Motov8’s success: “I believe God has given me the wisdom and strength to remain true to the calling he placed on my life 22 years ago, regardless of the obstacles that have been put in my way.”
Rev. McMahon was once a troubled teen himself and at the age of 19 he was on the verge of suicide. Having gone through such hard times gives him the ability to relate to young people who may be going through similar problems. “It’s one of the major components of our signature seminar The Ride of Life that young people say they connect with. They will often be in a better place to listen because they identify in some way with what I went through and put people through.”
The comments and feedback that he receives at the end of his seminars are of great inspiration to Rev. McMahon and he enjoys hearing about the transformations that young people have been through because of Motov8. “Every so often I walk into a business or a shopping centre and I have a young person or a young adult come up to me and thank me for speaking in their school – one, two, three and even five-seven years ago now – that brings a smile to my face and reinforces a sense of accomplishment.”
Reverend John McMahon
Motov8 offer a variety of services, including eight different seminars such as:
- Ride for Life’s use of motorbike analogies to succeed in everyday life
- Raging Bulls addresses teenage boy anger management
- Born Survivors teaches warning signs and grief-coping strategies for suicide
- Beef tackles the stereotypes that teenage boys feel regarding masculinity
- Emo-Intel looks at how emotional intelligence is developed and how teenagers interpret the information they receive on a daily basis.
The final seminar, No Brainer, confronts the issue of teenage alcohol and drug consumption, looking at the effects these substances have on their brains, bodies and lives and it explores possible alternatives for young people to consider. Motov8 can also provide youth and family counselling, workshops and school consultancy services, among others.
Rev. McMahon attributes Motov8’s success to a mixture of his own life experiences, his faith and the people around him. “My journey, gifts and talents are a key ingredient to the impact of Motov8 presentations. But equally, the input from people around me and the very earthy, ‘rubber hits the road’ faith that I have continues to be the backbone of Motov8.”
Rev. McMahon hopes to expand Motov8 by training other likeminded presenters who have a passion for both motor sports and helping young people navigate through life. He would love to see Motov8’s seminars and presentations in all primary and secondary schools in Australia and New Zealand.
More information and contact details can be found on the Motov8 website.
Photos: © Motov8