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Can someone remind me how to teach a child to cycle

(9 Posts)
hercules1 Mon 20-Jul-09 20:04:49

Been a few years since did it with ds and I remember it being very easy. Dd (5) managed a little last year but not tried since.
We tried today and she kept falling off. I found it really hard to know how best to help her.

What sort of ground is the best? Do you hold on to them, if so where - handlebars, back of seat, both?

Or just let them find their own way?

GentleOtter Mon 20-Jul-09 20:11:25

When dd was learning, I remember running like a loon holding the bike saddle and trying to holler ' Keep peddling and keep going!'
We did this for what seems like weeks and one day she did it herself (after falling of a lot).
Stabilisers seem to help with the confidence and balance until they get into the way of cycling and it seems easier once the stabilisers come off.

fluffles Mon 20-Jul-09 20:13:37

i'd put the seat right down so that they can walk along on the ground while sitting on the seat and not bother with stabilisers.

if they're catching their feet on the pedals then you can take them off too.

once the child is happy and comfy on the bike and scooting along and balancing going down hills you can introduce them to pedalling.

uberalice Mon 20-Jul-09 20:16:34

DS just learned recently. Make sure the bike is the right height, i.e. not too high that they can't reach the ground with their feet. Take off the stabilisers. Go somewhere safe and relatively flat, or with a very slight incline. Encourage them to get used to the feeling of freewheeling downhill (a very gentle hill), or on a flat surface, and eventually when they're ready, they'll just put their feet on the pedals and be off. Well that worked for us anyway. Falling off is part of the learning process, so don't be discouraged by it.

uberalice Mon 20-Jul-09 20:17:21

Cross post with fluffles. grin

onepieceoflollipop Mon 20-Jul-09 20:19:26

Good luck hercules. Our dd is 5 as well. We had a few "false starts" over Easter/half term. She is quite a "vocal" child and we had various outbursts from her in the park, whilst onlookers try to snigger discreetly.grin

I will continue with the same technique over the summer, hanging on to back of seat and running alongside, whilst trying to keep calm and shouting encouragement . (the promise of a visit to the icecream van often helps!)

loliandelismum Mon 20-Jul-09 21:27:04

I swear I ended up having counselling as a result of my DDs inability to ride a bike - I was a total failuer as a parent!! I took her out every day for about 2 months (she was about 9 by this stage!) - we went around the back lanes, parks, you name it - I lost about 2 stone with all the running and holding. In the end, I read that some children (particulary risk averse ones like my DD) prefer a large open space and are frightened of veering off the path or cycling into walls. So we went to my office car park one Saturday with a huge packet of sweets (bribes) and she cracked it in about 2 hours. It was so much easier in the car park, becasue she didn't have to worry about keeping straight or coming off the path. Sorry - long post, but hopefully will save you from couselling! Good luck!!

MoonchildNo6 Wed 22-Jul-09 15:07:41

My DS1 is totally terrified of his bike even with stabilisers and he is 5. Loads of his friends cycle to school without stabilisers and I keep thinking what are we doing wrong? I guess he'll do it when he's ready but I just find it hard to understand the reluctance. I couldn't wait to learn when I was little!

MadamDeathstare Thu 23-Jul-09 23:27:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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