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To perservere with dd's cycling lessons?

(56 Posts)
Dancergirl Sun 06-Oct-13 21:10:41

Dd is 10 and can't ride a bike. She's slightly dyspraxic and struggles with many physical activities. I obviously want to help and support her as much as possible.

Dh and I both think bike riding is a skill she should have, in later life she can then decide whether to use that skill or not. Plus they do cycling proficiency later on in Year 6 and I want her to have the choice whether to do it or not, rather than not be able to take part because she can't ride a bike.

She has started having private lessons with an excellent instructor. He's taught many kids to ride including special needs etc and has a lot of experience. Dd's had a few lessons and he says she's doing well. He's concentrating on getting her to balance which is the biggest aspect. But dd's finding it hard going and complains every time. But I know dd - she wants to be able to ride, she just doesn't want to go through the process of learning which for her could take some time.

A few years ago she struggled with swimming. It took a year of private lessons (and lots of moaning) until she could swim, but she eventually got to a point when she thanked me for persevering and now gets a lot of pleasure from swimming.

I've talked to a few adults who don't ride a bike and they say they wish they had learnt as children. Dh thinks we should insist she carries on. But I've got a few doubts in my mind and I know that riding a bike is not in the same league as swimming.


NameyMcChanger Wed 09-Oct-13 11:52:55

I'm not sure whereabouts in the country you are op but I've found a place in Carlisle, Cumbria which gives cycling lessons to disabled children. You can also hire trikes there for £2 or so, it's here

quoteunquote Wed 09-Oct-13 12:04:55

OP, I recommend finding your local indoor climbing wall, that runs the
NICAS scheme,

We have a lot of success with dyspraxia people, three of our coaches have dyspraxia issues, my son has made huge progress with his coordination. He taken his personal successes into other areas of his life, and has made great progress in other areas (dyslexia challenges), as his confidence has grown, he is prepared to keep trying, knowing he will eventually succeed.

It really good for the brain training, as you can see where a hand or foot should go, you have to force yourself to make the move as your arms start to pump, and the brain registers the process,

It's really important to go at your own pace, but each time you go, you will see a slight progress, each and every time.

It's incredible self rewarding for an individual, as it they find themselves overcoming lots of personal hurdles.

we have just had a dyspraxia woman in her 40s, who has been trying to pass her driving test for many years in an automatic, she was advised to start climbing as last ditch chance, she started on the boulder wall, only able to make one move before falling off onto the crash mat, it took her a year, climbs like a pro now, and past her test, having been told she never would by several expert instructors, we now have been sent two more adults in the same predicament, she is coaching them.

It really brain trains the body coordination, do a big R and L on the hands, it helps to start, and always hire the climbing shoes(buy when she gets into it)

I suggest both you and your husband do enough lessons (two or three)to be qualified to belay, then you can pop along and do cheap odd hours practice, two or three short sessions a week and you will see rapid improvements.

One of the comments we hear a lot is that dyspraxia children's bike riding improves, reading and they suffer fewer injuries, we certainly find DS has improved, his spacial awareness is just fab now, and he gets up and down stairs without stumbling.

and if you do the NICAS you end up with a great qualification, that universities recognise as great personal development, plus you will be really fit (20 mins on the wall is equal to an hour in the gym), and the great outdoors is an endlessly brilliant hobby.

Dancergirl Wed 09-Oct-13 14:56:39

Wow, thanks quote funnily enough, I'd always fancied giving climbing a go myself!

Lots of really great advice on here, thank you so much.

We do have the bike to practice on between lessons but in reality it doesn't seem to happen. I feel sorry for dd, she seems to have so much stuff to DO at the moment. We had a physio appointment for her rolling ankles (pronation), he's giving her exercises to be done 3 times a day! She's doing really well with doing them but it's a pain. And she's in the middle of 11+ exams and is working really hard. It's hard as a parent to get this all in! And I want to make sure she also has time to relax and see friends/do fun stuff.

They don't do cycling proficiency until next Spring so we've got a bit of time. I wonder whether to take a break until all the 11+ exams are over in January..?

moldingsunbeams Wed 09-Oct-13 15:08:00

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

quoteunquote Thu 10-Oct-13 00:57:01

Do please have a go we have people climbing from 4 to 90. there are three ladies who are in their 70s and 80s, who are just amazing.

we have mums on the bolder walls with babies on the crash mats(opposite ends)

It's additive, will make you fit, clear your mind (you can't think about anything else when you climb)

and you get to stand in the most impressive places in the world.

My daughter wears a t-shirt that has on it, Climb like a Girl, you will get really good, within a few months, and feel on top of the world.

Plus if they get into it, all they ever want for Christmas is kit, it makes it really easy.

and if you climb you can eat as much as you like as you burn it off instantly.

fussy eaters will inhale anything you put in front of them after a two hour session, my friend's daughter went from turning her nose up at almost everything you would want a child eat, to demanding more vegetables, within weeks.

MrsMook Thu 10-Oct-13 06:20:55

I was 19 when I learnt to ride a bike. I bought it with my first wage from my new job- I had to walk it home as I had no other way to do it!

The next day I went out to some private roads that were quiet and sussed it.

(Funnily I mastered swimming at 16. I'm also awful at throwing and catching but seemed to have improved with age)

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