We have all been there and it represents one of the first moments of glory of our life. Learning to pedal, balancing on two wheels without any support is, with walking independently on one’s own legs, among the first manifestations of motor independence of the little ones. And also one of the memories that binds us to our parents, bent in two to support us, panting, in our first two-wheeled virtuosity.
At what age you start pedaling independently
Some do it already at three / four years. The best age is between 4 and 5 also, sometimes, later (Lorenzo, my first child, started at seven years but, later, has recovered abundantly the lost time …).
Of course, like all things, you have to try to progress:
– the tricycle even at an early age, to learn how to ride;
– subsequently the bicycle with the rear support wheels, to get more and more familiar with the vehicle and learn, above all, to brake.
And finally the big jump. Some suggestions :
– do not strain the child. That of cycling without support will ultimately be his choice, in which
you will encourage him but without “obligations”;
– ask your child if he wants to try, also underlining some undoubted advantages: you will be more independent, faster and “bigger” ….
– start by ensuring that the child knows first of all to brake with a certain “ease” and that touches well with his feet on the ground. In case you adjust the saddle.
– to wear: helmet, elbow pads, knee pads and gloves to mitigate the consequences of some likely falls and, above all, to make your child safer;
– riding a bike is fun: so between the various tests you make frequent breaks useful to her / him and you!
– choose a flat piece without obstacles and free from distractions, where the child can concentrate and move freely;
– remove the pedals as well as the wheels. It is a simple operation that you can do yourself with a special key, reminding you to turn it anti-clockwise for the right pedal and clockwise for the left pedal;
– run long stretches using your feet as a propulsive force. In this way he will learn to find the right balance. When he has gained more confidence, he can push himself forward and go with his feet lifted off the ground for longer and longer stretches;
– increasing confidence, look for a slight, long descent (not the pit ramps !!!). In this way it will be possible to cover longer and longer distances without the support of the feet.
– when you see it safe, remount the pedals. It should thus, with the appropriate and due initial hesitations, start pedaling alone! Hurray, another cyclist is “born” !!!
In the last few years, wooden bikes without pedals have been seen in Italy. They are beautiful and functional to find balance for the child. The same effect, however, can try, without any added expense, on his bike, without wheels and pedals. Money saved!
Finally, a short entertaining video: how NOT to teach children to ride a bike: http://dai.ly/bzE5Xb