Sunday, October 31, 2010

Learning how to ride a bike

In Mussoorie -- a small town in the foothills of the Himalaya ranges -- I had the pleasure of watching a little boy taking the first steps towards becoming a cyclist. He was on a pink-and-yellow bike that was actually too small for him. Attached to the rear wheel there seemed to be a construction for training wheels, but the wheels were missing. His father walked beside him and gently held on to the seat/backrest.

easy cycling

When they went uphill, the father pushed a little more from behind. On the downhill parts the father, in addition, secured him by holding on to the handlebar. Though the young fellow already did a good job himself. By now he certainly already masters his bike.

uphill  downhill

Can you still remember how you learned to cycle?

My first bike was a pink Barbie bike which I got at the age of  three. Back then we still lived in a city, and I was only allowed to ride it (with training wheels) in the flat and at a trail along the river. Shortly after we moved to the west -- and countryside. My grandparents had a house, and I practised cycling on the small drive in the front. I learned to cycle without training wheels just like the Indian boy did. Someone was holding on to the seat and let go after a while. Turns where the hardest part, but well, eventually I got it.

These days special learner bikes are state-of-the-art for children that want to learn cycling in Austria. Does anybody have experience with them?

A Puky learner bike


Brent said...

When I was five and my brother three, my dad happened upon a yard sale and bought two banana-seat bikes. Within a few days my brother and I were riding them, and we never looked back. Of course, it wasn't interesting that I could ride at age five, but it was unusual that my brother at age three could. I remember being a little irked that he got all the attention. ;-)

Herzog said...

Hah, I think my first bike was also a pink Barbie bike... and I taught myself how to ride by coasting down a little hill in my yard. I feel so hardcore now.

çocuk montu said...

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She Rides a Bike said...

My first bike was a purple girl's Schwinn with a step through frame that my parents brought home for me when I was in the 2nd grade. I was quite insistent that I wanted a purple bike. My dad taught me to ride it on the street in front of our house. I practiced often, and my dad raised the training wheels little by little as my confidence grew. On the big day, my dad ran beside me with his hand on the saddle to steady my push off. I was thrilled at how fast I was going and stunned to hear my dad calling from far behind "Keep pedaling Doo-Bug. You're doing it Doo-Bug (his pet name for me until this day)." A very sweet post and a happy memory for most of us, I hope.

Anonymous said...

I have 3 children and the 2 eldest are now riding under their own steam. My first born learned to ride using stabilisers, first 2, then 1, then a day pushing him around. He now goes out on long (20+ mile) rides quite happily.

I tried one of the pedal-less cycles with my next child, she picked up the balance really quickly and progressed swiftly on to a proper bike, but she still has trouble at the transition between pushing and pedalling, and is far from confident. I wouldn't recommend them, and won't be using them with my youngest.

Learner Motorbikes said...

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