There is no absolutely perfect age to learn how to ride a bike. Nor are there any perfect ‘one size fits all’ bikes out there that your kids will take to, like a duck to water. Let’s see how you too can go about teaching your kids how to ride their first bike:
- Get safety gear first
When you teach a kid to ride a bike you should be prepared for a few thrills and spills. Let one thing be clear. There is no foolproof way to avoid a kid falling off the bike. Now, the very last thing you want in life is for your precious child to get hurt. Scraped knees and bleeding shins can put your kid off bike riding for life. However, with the proper gear, they won’t have any fear of falling down. At the same time, they might actually grow to enjoy it since it will make them appear brave and tough. They must always wear a good quality helmet at all times. Also, make sure they are wearing their shin guards and knee pads too. They should also wear shoes and comfortable clothes instead of slippers while learning to ride a bike for the first time.
- Find a bike that your kid really likes to ride
It is very important to find a bike that will actually fit your child very well indeed. You will have to make sure that the bike is neither too large nor too small. That is, they should be able to stand over the top tube while they have both feet planted firmly on the ground. Here, you must be careful to avoid getting an overly large bike for your kid under the belief that they will grow into it. Such bikes will be much harder and difficult to control when compared to one that would fit them. However, you might consider a bike that is slightly smaller for them since it would give them more confidence and they would be closer to the ground. This way, they won’t fear falling off that much. Many kids fear a spill if the is too far above the ground. But if they would be able to step off as and when they want, it would curtail their fear to a great extent.
- Teach them to ride different bikes
You might consider teaching your kid to ride different kinds of bikes so that they would be able to pick and choose their specific flavor, so to speak. For example, you can teach them to ride sleek roadsters, or alternately, you can teach them to ride mini dirt bikes if they like a bit of adventure in their lives. This way, they will be able to decide for themselves which bike they like to ride the most. One of the best ways to figure out their favorite bike is to let them ride all of them together and then to let them decide. You should not try to force them to opt for a bike that ‘you’ like. Instead of that, they should decide for themselves what they really want for themselves.
- Check the reach of their bike
You should see if they can reach the handlebars properly without leaning too far forwards. They should be able to reach the gears (if any) and the brakes easily without being forced to stoop down. All the controls should be comfortably within reach. Such as the handlebars and the brakes. The same applies to the paddles too. As long as they are able to use the controls, they will be able to learn quickly.
- Use training wheels
It is always a good idea to start them off with training wheels. This will give them the confidence to ride a bike without fear of falling down. You can remove the first one wheel and then the other one, till they are able to control the bike easily.
Teaching a kid to ride a bike is fairly easy. You just have to choose the right bike such as a mini dirt bike that they like. Use training wheels and pick the right size bike and before you know it, they would be riding along with you!