Teaching Bike Riding

I have a son that knows how to ride a bike, but how did he learn to ride a bike?  Well, first he started with training wheels. 

Before learning to ride the bike, he had to learn to pedal in a smooth motion that would keep him going.  Then we got him a bike.

We were fortunate, I suppose in our initial bike purchase because the first bike we got for him had really nice spring loaded training wheels that flex quite a bit. When he’d lean over onto a training wheel, the spring loaded part of it would flex a bit and cause him to lean over further than a stiff set of training wheels.

He used that bike with the training wheels for about a summer and a half (we live in Alaska and it’s not really practical to ride the bike in the winter).  Then one week his uncle (who is about 25) came home from Norway and we decided to enlist his aid in helping Mark learn to ride the bike sans training wheels.  Off came the wheels. 

Immediately, we found that the bike was not really meant for riding without the wheels. The rake was too short. In other words, it turned too sharply and fell too quickly to ride easily for a beginner.  The problem was, he was trying to pedal like he runs, with his arms pumping opposite too his legs, in a typical bi-pedal ambulatory motion: whenever he pedalled hard, he’d pull too hard with his opposite hand and would crash and he’d fall in the opposite direction of the hand that just pulled too hard..  So the grandparents went and found another larger bike for him to use that did not steer so sharply.

Then he was easily able to go right up and down the street.  The odd thing was, then, that he still had to learn to turn and slow down start pedaling and stop, along with a host of other skills.

I’ll see if I can get uncle John to write a description of the stuff he did with Mark and then post it as well.

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One Response

  1. […] bicycleworld wrote an interesting post today onHere’s a quick excerptImmediately, we found that the bike was not really meant for riding without the wheels. The rake was too short. In other words, it turned too sharply and fell too quickly to ride easily for a beginner. The problem was, he was trying to … […]

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