Teaching them to ride

Want to get your kids on two wheels? Got any general 'family biking' questions? Chat here
Tangled Metal
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Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 08:54 am

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby Tangled Metal » Mon Apr 29, 2019 08:28 am

Yes, gears are something to teach. Our son is kind of resisting changing his. He spins wildly in lowest gear then we convince him to change to a higher gear. Then we find he's not changed down again at the hill, he's powering up the hill in 8th gear!

This summer the goal is to teach him to use his gears better. He can change on the go and does respond to suggestions but he needs to do it for himself. These things come though.

evanssophiya
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Joined: Mon Jul 29, 2019 03:34 am

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby evanssophiya » Thu Aug 01, 2019 06:14 am

Hi!
What was the first bike you bought for your child? I have a son of 1.5 years and he is already showing interest in children on bicycles in a children's playground near our house. What can you advise for this age? And can he ride a bike or wait up to three years?

DrHaggis
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Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby DrHaggis » Thu Aug 01, 2019 07:34 am

It depends on how tall he is. At 18 months, he may be able to "scoot" on a small balance bike. The smallest pedal bikes have 14" wheels, and a proportional inside leg length requirement. I've seen very few kids under 3 cycling properly (w/o stabilisers), but it's doable.

Following my experience with my youngest, my cousin, and based on what others here say, I would avoid stabilisers at all. These only teach kids how to pedal forward... and bad balancing habits. Go balance bike, and once he can advance on a slight downhill slope without his feet, he's physically ready for a bike (but wait until he's mentally ready!).

Slowbike
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Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby Slowbike » Thu Aug 01, 2019 08:34 am

Our son started on a wooden trike (present from a friend) - he still uses this over 3 years later ... he was very interested in bikes from an early age (hardly surprising given the number of bikes in the house) - as he was small (although tall for his age) we bought him a Puky balance bike - he'd seen one on holiday and was transfixed by it ...
Saddle height is 30cm+ so as long as his inside leg measurement is 30cm or more then he'll fit it - but they do grow very quickly so don't worry if he's not quite there yet. Our son still rides it - despite now being on a 20" bike ...

We didn't do a pedal bike until he was 2 1/2 - then we got him an Islabike Cnoc14 small as it was the one with the lowest standover height.

Matt_N
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Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2012 15:16 pm

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby Matt_N » Thu Aug 15, 2019 07:23 am

evanssophiya wrote:Hi!
What was the first bike you bought for your child? I have a son of 1.5 years and he is already showing interest in children on bicycles in a children's playground near our house. What can you advise for this age? And can he ride a bike or wait up to three years?


My lad started on a Specialized Hotwalk (12” wheel) aged around 2 and then transitioned to a Frog 43 at just over 3, straight on it pedalling away.

There are some small balance bikes out there, take a look at the Frog Tadpole Mini, 10” wheel and suits an inside leg of just 21cm.

Micro do a couple of different ones that are quite small too.

Or go with something like the Chillafish Bunzi which starts as a trike and can be turned into a balance bike.

Really depends how tall they are.
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Roastie_Cyclocross
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Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 22:21 pm

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby Roastie_Cyclocross » Fri Sep 13, 2019 13:59 pm

What is the best way to teach them to use pedals?

My daughter was riding by 3 1/2 & my aim is to get my son riding by 3. He'll be 2 1/2 this month & last weekend I bought a little 12" pedal bike off eBay for £9 with the view to put it away until he is ready.

Out of curiosity I thought that I would put him on it just to see where he will need work. He has great balance, when I give him a push & let him go.

The only problem is that he is currently pedaling forwards half a rotation & then back pedaling, then forwards half a rotation, then backwards half a rotation etc, rather than forwards for a full rotation.

I'm picking him up a pedal trike on the way home tonight (Hopefully he's big enough to use it as he's a bit of a short ars* :) ) thinking that should be a good way for him to learn in isolation and not have to concern himself with balance.

I was just wondering how everyone else has taught their children to use the pedals correctly?

Willer544
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Joined: Thu Sep 12, 2019 10:11 am

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby Willer544 » Tue Sep 17, 2019 12:20 pm

Do you think it has any kind of effect it is lighter? Going from a light bicycle to driving pedals round on a heavier bicycle?

Slowbike
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Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby Slowbike » Tue Sep 17, 2019 12:57 pm

Roastie_Cyclocross wrote:What is the best way to teach them to use pedals?

I don't think there is a "best way" just alternative methods that work differently on different little people!

Our son had his first pedal bike at 2 1/2 - wanted to ride it, but didn't know how to pedal / didn't have the co-ordination to turn the pedals - plus it was a different geometry to his balance bike. So we tackled it two ways.
1) we removed the pedals so he could ride it as a balance bike independently.
2) we towed him on the follow-me tandem with the pedals on - often putting them on mid ride - and encouraged the pedaling action.
It took a couple of months for him to get it - he had a lot of self-doubt that we had to encourage him through - videos of him riding helped enormously ...

The two bits I would advocate are
a) get down and ride at their level so they have someone to ride with
b) make it about more than just riding a bike, so make it games or riding to somewhere for a purpose (usually a treat).

I rode a 20" bike with our son from the very start - he had no peers to ride with, it meant I could play bumping up and down curbs, across drains and stopping for the trains whilst scooting or pedaling - all on his level. When we went further it was usually to go somewhere for a hot chocolate or sweets - even if we had the hot choc in a flask... He's 4 now and can ride >5 miles solo including off-road, on the 20" bike that I used and is starting to tackle some gradients.

DrHaggis
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Joined: Fri Sep 01, 2017 21:07 pm

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby DrHaggis » Tue Sep 17, 2019 15:45 pm

Slowbike wrote:b) make it about more than just riding a bike, so make it games or riding to somewhere for a purpose (usually a treat).


This, This, and a thousand times This. Something fun that makes it not about the bike worked great with my youngest too. Even our eldest, who'll turn 8 soon, is happy going along, but is not into riding the bike for its sake.

Roastie_Cyclocross
Posts: 33
Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 22:21 pm

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby Roastie_Cyclocross » Mon Oct 07, 2019 10:58 am

DrHaggis wrote:
Slowbike wrote:b) make it about more than just riding a bike, so make it games or riding to somewhere for a purpose (usually a treat).


This, This, and a thousand times This. Something fun that makes it not about the bike worked great with my youngest too. Even our eldest, who'll turn 8 soon, is happy going along, but is not into riding the bike for its sake.


Thanks both for taking the time to offer advice, apologies for the slow reply.

I can confirm that he quickly learn't how to pedal the trike, but this did not transfer onto the bike like I hoped that it would. Trying to keep it fun for him & just trying him again every 7-10 days to keep it all fun & new, the good news is that he definitely wants to learn :D

Had a bit of a brake through last night where he was actually turning the pedals all the way round (but then we had to go in for dinner :roll: ), so fingers crossed it will all click into place soon.

MugenSi
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Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2012 12:43 pm

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby MugenSi » Mon Oct 07, 2019 11:07 am

I taught both mine to ride at the age of 3 with a balance bike but they also had a 12" bike with stabilisers so as to teach them pedalling skills. Once they were confident scooting about on the balance bike without putting their feet down, I removed the stabilisers and got them to try the bike. They both mastered it immediately (like within 2 minutes) I think balance bikes are the way forward and they appear to get confident on them very quickly.

Roastie_Cyclocross
Posts: 33
Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2016 22:21 pm

Re: Teaching them to ride

Postby Roastie_Cyclocross » Mon Oct 07, 2019 14:56 pm

Yeah I was considering the stabiliser route just to get him to grasp how to pedal properly, I still might (I don't think that my back can take much more bending down & holding onto him :lol: ). He's been on a balance bike for over a year, so he's got balancing down, plus he will still be using his balance bike, so won't become reliant on stabilisers for balance.

MugenSi, the user name rings a bell from ITR-DC2 forum???


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