First Start – YOU
To begin with, either it is a balance bike or a trike, your toddler wants to walk with you in a small seat for kid on the bike so that he can feel the wind through his hair and his face; the feeling of being propelled on the bumpy road or street; you are giving him a piece of snack when he wants; you are bringing him to the zoo or to see granny, although to some people both of them are two same things; or merely on the road to pick up the mail.
Riding creates good behavior, is that right? Daddy and momma? Let’s make him feel that he is the happiest child in the world by taking him to ride with you. What is even better than sitting on a bike?
Keep him very close
The kiddie seat can teach him many things about balance or about biking just like breathing, an amazing physical experience – an important lesson for us as parents, as teachers: learning by doing, lead by typical example, and only need to leap right in,then put your child on kiddie seat and here we go.
Most importantly – warm clothing such as gloves, even though you do not want to wear them for yourself, their little baby hands may get cold easily in the wind. And snacks, Have I ever mentioned that? A fed and warm kid is the happiest toddler who can associate sitting on your bike with much pleasure. Remember to bring the snacks.
Which one to get – the answer is BOTH!
Let’s continue– Now he needs a balance bike toddler and a trike. The latter is his very first experience of self-propelled locomotion. Take one old-fashioned upright trike, maybe some nice old rusted strike from your neighbor. Then wipe all of the rust off and clean it a little bit. The torn seat must be taped up. Guide him carefully about the way to use the pedals. He will tip over it finally and that is ok. Just make sure that he has a very safe place to sit on. No cars, no stairs, especially no cruel dogs.
Teaching him to pedal
At first, starting to use pedals may seem very hard; it is not something you are born with as we may think it is intuitive because it is with us at this moment; when you are still a small toddler, it is definitely not. When starting to pedal, it is a lot more helpful if it is one slight slope.
But what should you do if it is a balance bike?
Everything is the same with a balance bike – perhaps you could take two of them to go to the park or to the tennis court. A balance bike has been through a long history since the 1st iteration of a costly one that is made of wood by genuinely bearded men in some plaid shirts. Of course, you can choose some cheaper plastic ones.
Sometimes you can make it with any recycled cardboard; stay careful if it rains with the cardboard one. You should lower the seat so that your kid will sit with legs bent at his knee about 30 degrees, feet literally on the ground. Just allow him to push off or glide around.
He surely put his feet down if he needs. If you have been riding along with him, certainly he knows how the motion feels like. Steering really is a tricky part, indeed.
The secret formula in teaching – you have to be agile
Now you realize that using pedals seems not so hard, it is rolling along that needs much effort. I’m going to introduce to you a secret to teaching them both: do not turn learning into a chore either for them or for you.
Just like any magician: resort to misdirection –guide them the way to use their pedals/balance like it is the second part of some games, for example, chasing after mom or dad.
Chasing has been the most effective game to guide him without letting him know he is learning how to use the pedal, how to keep balance or how to ride independently.
The simple ecstasy of the fact that slowly ramming me, then looking at me when I’m rolling out of street, or just lay down on the plain ground, or pretending to have a bath in the puddle, made him laugh so hard that he even sped to me and forgetting the whole of this is a brand new experience for him.
He wanted to get to me as quickly as he could, running over me or to check out if there really were any sharks in the puddle while in fact there were none; they had already swum off when he just got there
About Megan Richardson
Megan is the founder of Kudkid, where she blogs about fitness, style, health, recipes and savvy mom advice to help you through pregnancy, birth, and raising your kids.