When it comes to raising children, one thing your life won’t be short on is memories. One of the best memories you’ll get to create is teaching your child how to ride a bike. We all remember the fear of our parents letting go of the handlebars and the exhilaration when you kept pedaling. For most parents, that was some time ago and it can be tough to start teaching your own children. Fortunately, it’s like riding a bike.
Get the right bike to start with
The first thing you need to do is to make sure you have the right bike, to begin with. There is no shortage of kids bikes on the market. One of the best bikes to start out with is a balance bike. A balance bike allows you to teach your child the fundamentals and safety of riding a bike without the sheer terror associated with falling off. It will allow your child to build their confidence slowly and learn to balance without the over complication of pedals. That means if the worst should happen, all they need to do is put their feet down.
The next logical stage up from the balance bike is the child’s bike with training wheels. Training wheels allow your child to master the art of pedaling and steering without the safety net of being able to put their feet down. Training wheels allow them to gain the confidence necessary to pedal, steer and balance at the same time. Eventually, your child will learn the basics and have enough confidence to get around without them. Training wheels are not only functional but are easily installed on bikes, meaning when the time comes to remove them there is no need for a new bike altogether.
There really is no such thing as being too safe when teaching your child to ride their first bike. Make sure you have the essentials to help show your child they are safe, and why bike safety is something to be concerned with. A helmet is a minimum, but if you want some extra support try knee and elbow pads as well. Pads will help stop any blunt force trauma if the dreaded fall should occur. When teaching your child, use established bike paths instead of your local street. The safety and ambiance of a bike path are more calming when trying to learn. Also, try to avoid peak hour, there may not be cars but there will certainly be busy commuters on their way home.
Do your own research
Your child doesn’t have to be the only one to learn. Take some time to do your research on the different techniques and methods that have been shown to work on different children. Trying to understand what methods your child will respond to can make the learning process a lot more fun and a lot faster. Not all people learn the same, try to understand what your child needs in order to feel confident when hopping in the saddle. Some children require direct teaching and others will need more easygoing guidance. Whatever your child needs, doing some homework of your own will help you both enjoy it.
When it comes to teaching your child how to ride a bike, there are some proven methods to help you both along. Understanding your child and using some helpful tools to provide more confidence will not only speed things up but make the whole process more enjoyable for you both. Try balance bikes first then move into the more technical versions, and always think safety first.