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Anyone else find teaching bike riding painful!?

(16 Posts)
pigleychez Wed 16-May-12 16:57:48

Is it just me?

DD1 is 3.9 and has a balance bike. Her trouble is she's far too cautious!
She freaks out going down even the slightest hill and going up is just as bad as 'its such hard work!'

It feels like she's never going to crack the balance bike and progress to a normal bike. I try to take her out to give her practice but its like pulling teeth each time.
Its the same on her scooter. Her friends whiz to nursery on their scooters. If I try and bring hers I spent the whole 10 minute ride home with her freaking out about falling off. Her 2yr old sis will soon be whizzing about leaving her far behind.
I feel like such a bad mum for getting wound up about it but I find to so frustrating.

Any words of advice for me or her?

CogitoErgoSometimes Wed 16-May-12 17:40:26

Find flat, safe places so that she's not freaked out or overworked and let her build her confidence. Some of us more cautious types (and I speak from bitter personal experience) find the whole thing takes longer than our more gung-ho peers but we usually get there in the end. 'Usually' because whilst I can ride a bike, no problem, I still can't put on roller-skates without blanching and feeling sick.

Blackpuddingbertha Wed 16-May-12 20:35:11

I found it incredibly frustrating and struggled to keep calm! DD is now 5.5 and has finally got the hang of it but still doesn't like hills or going at all quickly. We got one of the handles that you attach to the back of the bike so you can hold on to them easily without having to bend down. Very much less stressful after that. You can get them in Halfords though they are quite pricey; around £20 I think. I can't find a link to it but the theory is the same as this one.

I also found going with DH helped as when I really couldn't take any more I'd hand over to him! Good luck.

IneedAbetterNicknameIn2012 Wed 16-May-12 22:25:36

My DS1 was exactly like that! Doesn't help that when he fell of his bike and cried his Dad told him off hmm

He has finally cracked it age 7 1/2 and it took him a matter of minutes!

Agree that finding a flat place should help.

AnxiouslyExcited Wed 16-May-12 23:13:51

Get rid of the balance bike.

I think they're just a waste of money.

Get a proper bike then find a flat grassy place for her to get the hang of it.

My ds1 got his first proper bike for his 3rd birthday in April. We spent two full days practicing and now he rides great. (no stabilisers)

Beanbagz Thu 17-May-12 14:01:43

My DD was like that whereas DS was just off. It does get better. They both just competed in their first cycle race!

How about a nice gentle downhill grass slope at your local park? Maybe with other children to encourage her to get going? And when you do progress onto a proper bike - don't give in to stabilisers!

Sparklingbrook Thu 17-May-12 14:03:25

I think there is a gap in the market for 'Learning to Ride a Bike' lessons, just like swimming lessons, say.

bruffin Thu 17-May-12 14:09:17

The best people to teach kids to ride a bike are other kids, Both mine learnt playing out in the street with older children.

3rdnparty Thu 17-May-12 14:20:49

I would leave it, let her walk or how about a bike with stabilisers sp? for a feeling of ds hated balance bike but liked with stabilisers think he felt more secure....otherwise you may put her off completely...many kids that age don't want too and she will know its frustrating you even if your hiding it. The ability to balance is very varied, the majority of ds peers didn't go without stabilisers until 5/6/7

these scooters are good as very stable and you can also get a pull handle for when they are tired/going up hill

does she do gymnastics type stuff/walk on walls etc maybe other ways to increase her confidence in balancing dn who is otherwise quite sporty is completely uninterested and his younger brother does scoot past him at speed but is not bothered its driving my db mad so your not alone grin

BirdyBedtime Fri 18-May-12 08:59:01

I wouldn't worry at 3.9 - DD only learnt to ride her bike without stabilisers at 5.10! She merrily rode along at top speed with her stabilisers before then. I found that the more we made a big thing about trying without, the more it put her off. Does your DD's balance bike have brakes? DS has just started on one and if it hadn't had brakes i would have been wary about going down hill as there isn't much other than their feet they can do to stop. I know people say balance bikes make it easier to progress to a real bike, but each child is different and it might be that your DD would be better on a real bike with stabilisers?

Primrose123 Fri 18-May-12 09:23:41

Both my DDs were 8 before they could actually ride a bike! They both swam early, and skiied from a young age, but could not get the balance right for riding a bike! It didn't help that we lived on a hill, so they couldnt just practise in the garden, we had to drive to a park.

We tried running along holding the bike, but it never worked. Another mum whose son had dyspraxia told me to use a sheet like a harness, to wrap it around their chest under their arms, hold it behind them and support them that way. We found it much easier, and they soon got the hang of it.

pigleychez Fri 18-May-12 18:21:43

Thanks everyone.
Funnily enough she has pretty good balance on the bike so I dont think its that as such. She has hardly ever fallen off, just this fear of falling.

We do try and take her to flatter places but we are quite hilly here so it can be tricky. Even the slightest slope she freaks at.

I guess she is still quite young and it will come. She's obviously more and academic than a sporty type. smile

ivykaty44 Fri 18-May-12 18:23:11

TBH I think 3.9 is young to learn to ride a bike, some dc will do it no problem but your dc sounds like she would be better to wait for a couple of years and try again - it could well be much easier then

madwomanintheattic Fri 18-May-12 18:25:11

3.9? grin bit early to label, and quite normal. She'll probably be the next Rebecca Romero. Please don't let your thoughts become a self fulfilling prophecy!

happymumof2kids Sat 17-Nov-12 19:19:23

:-o I cheated and got a bike riding instructor...he was fantastic and my DS2 was proficient at bike riding at age of 3. Watching the instructor made me realised that I really made it hard for myself when I attempted to teach my DS1.

Goldenjubilee10 Sat 17-Nov-12 22:53:23

Ds3 is 6.4 and can't ride his yet. I might try the sheet!

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