A lot of us have unforgettable memories of the first time we were able to ride a bike. When you get your own children, this is usually one of the best childhood experiences you want to impart with them. Before you enter that Flash Rider 360 Walmart coupon code though, it’s worth reflecting if your kids are truly ready to ride a bike.
Most parents buy the first bike as soon as their kids start walking confidently by themselves. Indeed, children as young as three can successfully enjoy their training bikes without any further assistance. But riding a bike should be considered more as a developmental milestone than as a question of readiness by age.
As already mentioned, walking without any support is a non-negotiable achievement that a child must be able to perform before you introduce them to bike-riding. This is a sign that their muscles and bones are growing stronger along with their confidence. While a child may be injured from a fall while practicing to walk, it can nowhere be more serious than wounds sustained from a bike-related accident. Similarly, running is another milestone that you should consider as a requirement for your child before you start window-shopping for their first wheels.
It is common practice to start with training wheels especially in America. In Europe, however, children learn to ride a bike by using “dandy horses,” which are standard bikes but with no pedals included. Riding bikes is all about learning how to balance. That is why commercially-made balance bikes have been quite popular across the pond since Rolf Mertens started producing them in 1997. If you are able to test your child’s ability to balance before learning to pedal, this is all well and good. But if you can help them skip the training wheels and learn how to really balance on a bike, they will be more than capable to go without supervision.
Cycling is also a test for a child’s motor skills development. Since riding a bike requires arm and leg coordination in order to successfully balance, your child must also present great body coordination. Apart from biking, other good activities for them to try out are swimming, dancing, and playing popular ball sports. These exercises will help them coordinate their movements and you will be able to assess your child’s progress in this area of their development.
Readying Your Child
Aside from making sure that your child has the necessary skill in order to proceed with biking, you should also study their emotional reaction to the idea of riding. Ask them how they feel about learning to bike and if they are personally enthused with the concept. As with toilet training, your kids will let you know if they are truly up to the task. All kids are unique in their own way and their fears must be alleviated with good communication and not with pushing their anxiety button.
Once your little one lets you know that they are more than excited to start riding their bike, you can now let them choose their preferred wheels and the helmet to go with it. Enjoy!
Image Source: BigStockPhoto.com (Licensed)