10 steps for balance bike success

father teaching daughter to ride bike at sunset, active kids sport

Learning to ride is a milestone that everyone remembers, so as a parent it is important to make the process both enjoyable and educational. One thing that tends to be forgotten is that, through no fault of your own, the process can be lengthy.

To help avoid distraction, we have put together an easy-to-follow step by step plan to allow your child to grasp cycling successfully whilst causing you less stress.

Familiarise your child with the bike

Before your child gets on the bike the best thing to do is try and explain what the different parts of the bike are. Let them get a feel for the saddle, handle bars and brakes, this gives them a chance to learn the names of the components so they can follow instructions at a later stage.

Getting on and off

Help your child practice mounting and dismounting the bike. They need to be able to do this alone so, although it may be difficult, try and refrain from lifting them onto the seat more than a couple of times as this could lengthen the process.

Once your child can successfully do this alone it is time to check that the handle bars and seat are at the correct height, ensure that their feet can be placed flat on the floor with ease.

Walk before you can run

To build up confidence we suggest holding onto the back of the bike (some bikes have specific places for parents to do this, like Boomer likes) and have them walk, keeping their feet on the floor, so that they can get a feel for the movement of the bike and get used to the riding position. At this stage you will probably have to help them steer too.

Mum and child with helmets

Picking up the pace

As the child’s confidence grows they will want to go a bit faster. Again you should still be in control of the bike to a certain extent, but if you feel confident enough you can let go of the bike and just be there to catch them if they lose balance.

Encourage them to keep their chin up

Most children tend to look down at their feet when they first hop on a balance bike. You must encourage them to look forward so that they are concentrating on where they are headed.

We would suggest using a family member or a marker for them to aim for. This is also the stage where they will start to use the handle bars themselves and the marker can help with this.

Brake, brake, brake

A lot of children tend to use their feet to stop themselves whilst balancing but teaching them how to use brakes correctly and effectively will stand them in good stead for when they are ready to progress.

Feet off the ground

Encourage them to lift their feet up, if they aren’t trying to do so already. This is where your child will really put their balance to the test, it may take a few stumbles and falls but they will get there in the end. Just be there to catch them if they fall. Before you know it they will be balancing all by themselves.

Add pedals to the equation

After a while your child be ready to progress to pedaling. With the Boomer balance bike you simply have to add a pedal and chain set, adapt the saddle and handlebars and you’re all set.

Show and tell

Once again familiarise your child with pedals before you set them on their way. Show them how the pedals work and give them a test run with you by their side. They may be a bit wobbly to begin with as it’s something else to focus on but they will soon find their balance.

Let go

And that’s it, time to let go. Your child should be ready to saddle up and hit the road.

Each child will react to the steps differently and some will take longer than others. Not to worry, the final goal is the same and your child will get there with your help.

Boomer balance bikes help your child learn to ride quicker. Buy your Boomer here for only £99 delivered* by clicking here!

* Mainland UK. Additional costs for other areas.