Today I bought my daughter, Cyan, her second bike but this time without training wheels. It is a 20 inch, Schwinn “Stardust” bike suitable for her size and age. She was very excited at the prospect of possibly learning how to ride today. We were helped by one of the store clerks, Andy, as he picked out a bike for my daughter. She got on the bike and felt very comfortable. Andy gave her a few pointers on how to start learning how to ride and even demonstrated for her (she giggled at his large frame on her small bike). Being that she’s been riding her little scooter for quite some time now, he said that she already should know how to balance herself. He gave her until the end of July to really master how to ride her bike.
We left the store and headed back home. As I parked the car and got the bike out, she was eager to get on and ride. Why not? I got her helmet and proceeded to teach her the fine basics of riding and keeping balance. She was a little nervous and fearful of falling down and getting hurt but I assured her that I had her back – literally. As she rode her bike, I held the rear end of her seat. There were a few frustrating moments as she kept moving the handle bars in jerky movements or when she wasn’t able to properly push herself off but in the end, she started to get the hang of it. Unbeknownst to her, I would occasionally let go of the seat and watch her ride on her own for a few seconds. Excited at the prospect of actually seeing her ride on her own, I took a break and went upstairs to the apartment to get my camera and video. She went to a nearby park with my wife and the dog.
By the time I met up with them with the equipment and water bottles, a surprised Cyan shouted to me that she knows how to ride her bike! My wife was laughing as she confirmed that on her own, she set off to ride her bike. I had missed those precious solo moments!!!! My daughter, wishing to comfort me, told me that she was willing to reenact the whole ride all over again. To my utter surprise, she got on the bike and started pedaling away. I was so proud of her at that moment. She is such a quick learner. With only 15 minutes of direct one-on-one instruction, she was able to basically start learning on her own.
Tomorrow we will all go out and take a bike ride for the first time as a family.
2 thoughts on “Her First Solo Bike Ride”
hey, that’s a nice story. it reminds me of the respective days my son and daughter, jake and sage, learned to ride their bikes. jake, being a naturally gifted athlete, we would soon come to realize, was 4 years old when he insisted i remove the training wheels from his bike. it only took him riding up the street once in each direction to get it, maybe a total of 5 minutes! our good friends and neighbors, whose kids were pals with ours, happened to be looking out the window as this occurred and were hooting their encouragement, which made it extra fun from my perspective. good times. sage, btw, was at the opposite extreme–she kept her training wheels on until she was 7! by that time, the training wheels were pronated with hardly any rubber left on them. she really didn’t need any help from me. it was totally instantaneous–me holding on to the back of the bike was just a formality, heh.
i had been looking forward to that particular milestone since the day my kids were born, and then to realize how fleeting it actually was was kind of a shock! so i can relate to your surprise. all the big milestones seem to be like that, btw. at least you got in on most of it, especially the part where she trusted you to keep her from falling–that’s the best part, man.
cyan is a beautiful name for your daughter and a great blog title too. that’s the first time i’ve heard it. what a sweetie to offer to reenact the big moment! thanks for sharing…
Thanks for your wonderful comments and for sharing your own experiences with your children as well. You’re absolutely right about those moments being so fleeting. There are many more milestones to go and I hope to be better prepared next time. As a doting father, I will always have those memories ingrained in me but the videos and photos are more for her to share with her own children in the future.