The summer break is almost here, and your kids will soon be out playing in the neighborhood. If your young ones are just reaching the bike-riding age, perhaps you would like a few tips from Two Wheeling Tots on how to teach them this important skill without using training wheels. Remember, you and your children should always wear a helmet when riding.
Turn The Bike Into A Balance Bike
When you remove the pedals from a bike, it becomes a balance bike. Balance bikes can be a very valuable tool because they focus on teaching your child how to balance before teaching them how to pedal. Here is the process for setting up the balance bike and beginning the process of teaching your child how to ride:
- Remove the pedals. Be sure to remember which pedal goes on which side. The left pedals are threaded in the opposite direction, counter to the righty tighty lefty loosey rule you typically go by.
- Leave the crank arms. The crank arms can be difficult to remove, and they typically do not get in the way of your child’s legs while they learn to ride.
- Set the seat height. Make sure the seat is set just high enough so your kid’s feet are flat on the ground when they are sitting in the saddle with their knees slightly bent.
- Sit and walk. Have your child sit on the bike and begin to walk around, keeping their weight on the seat.
- Run and glide: Once your kid has gained enough confidence walking around, pick up the pace a bit so your child can get enough momentum to lift his or her feet off the ground.
- Be patient. Some kids get the hang of bike riding in just a few minutes, while others take days or even weeks. Be sure your child is completely comfortable before you put the pedals back on.
Pedaling And Balancing At The Same Time
Sometimes, new riders can have a little trouble with both pedaling and balancing. When this happens, there are a few ways you can help. Try placing your hands on their shoulders to guide them. Do not grab the bike, however, because this will interfere with your child’s balance. In addition, remind your child that the faster he or she rides, the more stable the bicycle will be. Finally, you may need to take the pedals back off and use the bicycle as a balance bike for a bit longer.
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Using A Pedal Trainer
If your child is having trouble learning to pedal forward, there are various methods you can use to correct this. Some involve lifting the back wheel off the ground, such as attaching training wheels and placing them on blocks. There are also balance buddies and other products you might want to consider.