We decided to give a two wheeler a try. My husband found this video and I have to say, this worked like a charm! I figured I'd share it with my friends :) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iO7HsWf8cbI
I see a lot of toddlers around here on the balance bikes... they are brilliant. I think they would have saved us a LOT of grief!!!
I fully agree that this woul;d be the way to go.
Thanks for posting! I had heard about taking the peddles off but had no idea balance could be learned so quickly. That video made it look so easy! My six year old is not the most physically coordinated or confident, but I'm going to see if she'd be willing to give it a try.
We have used balance bikes with our two oldest boys. We started them on the balance bike around 2.5-3, and by 4 they were riding their bike without training wheels. They probably could have learned even younger, but they just loved their balance bike (which is basically a bike without peddles, like they show in the video). Both of our boys picked riding their 2-wheelers up very quickly, within 1 day of wanting to try it.
Our youngest is almost 3, and has some gross motor delays and balance issues, so I think he'll be awhile before he can do the balance bike, but that is the route we're going to take with him as well!
My son has low tone and got this in an afternoon. He wasn't as quick as those other children but who cares? Devon - when your 3 year old is ready for a bike - skip the training wheels and peddles and go straight to this. I love the balance bikes but then you have to buy a regular bike - if you just use the regular bike as a balance bike it'll save you some $$ :)
My DD has low tone and motor planning delays.. we tried the balance bike but when she finally outgrew it we got (as a gift) a regular bike with training wheels. She's actually able to pedal! She just wants to be "moving" so whatever makes her happy in that regard.
I hope my 2yo has better luck with the balance bike (:
I agree with whatever makes a kid happy. My daughter has similar issues although on a pretty mild level (I think), and she totally didn't get the whole balance bike thing when she was younger. My neighbors had a couple. She was even reluctant to get on a bike with training wheels until recently, but now she really likes it.
At some point I'm definitely going to give the pedals off thing a try if she's game, and this video made me feel more confident about it, but if she wants the training wheels back on, then so be it. Just like so many other things, I don't think she'll be going off to college with training wheels.
I was about eight or at least very close to it when I learned to ride a two wheel bike which was completely typical for my little group of friends. Same for my husband. I'm not sure I understand the whole training wheel backlash. It made me chuckle when someone in the video said "without resorting to training wheels."
I'm glad to hear my son wasn't the only one who didn't like the balance bike. He has low tone and poor motor planning - I got the balance bike when he was 4 and he found it endlessly frustrating. I put it away for 6 months and tried again. Still no fun for him. Finally at age 5 I got him a bike w/training wheels and he is really liking it. He still has trouble going up the slightest hill but at least he can ride. Maybe we will try the balance bike again when we get ready to take off the training wheels - no time in the near future :)
My daughter has really outgrown her current bike and we're shopping for a new one. She's six and still using training wheels. She has a movement disorder related exclusively to walking (and running). She pedals just fine with training wheels. I wonder if I can take the training wheels and pedals off of her current bike and let her scoot around on that for a bit before getting the next size up. She is so reluctant to try new things and left to her own devices will still be riding a bike with training wheels when she's ten (she'd willingly wrap herself in bubble wrap if she could, she's afraid of getting hurt) but I think she'd be ok with using her existing bike differently, especially if she can keep her feet on the ground.
So...that's what we'll be doing this weekend, I guess.
I'd love to take the pedals and training wheels off though :) For now they're staying on- she has trouble staying on the seat and keeping her hands on the handle bars but is improving. She's not yet developmentally able to balance on a bike, so we won't be trying that for awhile. I don't see hear learning to balance OR ride a two wheeler any time in the near future, but I'm okay with that. I want to keep her happy and not push her any further.
The idea of a balance bike is pretty neat though. I agree, it seems like a better idea than training wheels.. but I do find it a bit alarmist and tinfoil hat-ish when people refer to training wheels as "the ultimate biking sin" type of thing
With our low-tone ds1, we took a two-pronged approach. Ate age 5, he alternated between riding a balance bike (to learn balance) and riding a giant all-terrain trike (to build up his muscles enough to be able to peddle). When he turned 6 we got him his pink and purple Barbie bike with streamers. He learned to ride it in one day with no training wheels. It took a few weeks before he was able to start or stop himself, and longer before he had enough strength to go up even the slightest of hills (because of the low tone), but he was able to go forward and peddle from day 1. I was amazed. But then, he always has had pretty good balance in general. Ds2 is NT, and he just went from a balance bike to a regular bike in one day at age 5.
You really don't need to purchase a balance bike - just take off the training wheels and peddles and your regular bike becomes a balance bike :)
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