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Jaybird180

Teaching Children To Ride

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Jaybird180    30

No real section for this post so I put it here. Admins feel free to move where you deem more apropos.

 

My 4yo got a PW-50 for his birthday. We've taken him out on it about 4 times now and I have learned a TON about proper learning gradients since lesson #1 didn't go so well (my opinion, mom disagrees).

 

When we got the bike, it came complete with training wheels, but they weren't mounted on the bike when he got it. We worked hard getting him to be able to ride his bicycle without training wheels, knowing his birthday was coming and that's all he could talk about - getting a dirtbike. He's done that so we plopped down the cash for the good condition pre-owned Yamaha.

 

There are 2 "rider aids" that can be enabled on the bike, an exhaust restrictor that lowers the power (not installed) and a throttle stop screw that physically limits the rotation of the throttle. It's sensitive to adjustments but I've got it turned to where the bike can go at a brisk pace.

 

Being a 2-stroke, there are a couple times where he's gotten it into the powerband and it takes off at a good clip. He's now quite a bit more reserved on the twistgrip, and sometimes complains that "it won't go" when in reality he isn't twisting those last few degrees.

 

I got him some miniature cones to do circle drills, weaving (steering) drills and I'd like to do braking drills. It's still tough working with him on a regular basis; it's cold here right now.

 

I'm wondering if putting the training wheel on for a session or 2 might prove positive. What say ye? Any other suggestions you guys might have? We were scheduled to attend some professional dirt training as a family but something keeps interfering with that plan and I feel the need to get him the riding time he needs.

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Cobie Fair    13

Problem with the training wheels (and depending on how they are adjusted) is it can turn the bike into a tricycle, which can steer like cars.

 

I've not trained lots of kids at that age, but I did go over countersteering with my young daughter on a bicycle.

 

I'd leave the training wheels off personally.

 

CF

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BikeSpeedman    14

I did something similar with my kid. When he turned 4, I bought him the Razor "minimoto" looking thing. Top speed of 20 (not super appropriate) and a binary throttle (not ideal) and a brake lever he didn't have the strength to pull (it's rated for 12 yo and up).

 

He had been riding a bicycle without training wheels since he was 42 months so lack of training wheels wasn't a concern. His feet could reach the ground to keep from falling when stopped so there was no need. I don't think this would have been the case on one of the 50s.

 

Since it was electric, he could legally ride around at our local park so that was one of the few things in the Pro column.

 

He hated the binary throttle and it took him months of being left alone to come around and want to learn it. I started him in the grass fields and I was surprised just how bumpy a field that looks smooth really is. Total lack of suspension another mark in the Con column. Eventually got him on the sidewalks and he had fun riding around and really enjoying it. I gave him time to learn and trust in the process and then tried to coach him to put his feet on the pegs but he wouldn't.

 

I eventually took it away from him until he was ready to ride it correctly. But then I bought a Boxster and thus he lost his chance. :-/

 

I actually have a big car again so I need to see if it will still hold a charge and see if he wants to start riding again.

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Jaybird180    30

Problem with the training wheels (and depending on how they are adjusted) is it can turn the bike into a tricycle, which can steer like cars.

 

I've not trained lots of kids at that age, but I did go over countersteering with my young daughter on a bicycle.

 

I'd leave the training wheels off personally.

 

CF

 

(making a "Tim the Toolman Taylor" face)

Something with hydraulic outriggers would be perfect!

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Jaybird180    30

I did something similar with my kid. When he turned 4, I bought him the Razor "minimoto" looking thing. Top speed of 20 (not super appropriate) and a binary throttle (not ideal) and a brake lever he didn't have the strength to pull (it's rated for 12 yo and up).

 

He had been riding a bicycle without training wheels since he was 42 months so lack of training wheels wasn't a concern. His feet could reach the ground to keep from falling when stopped so there was no need. I don't think this would have been the case on one of the 50s.

 

Since it was electric, he could legally ride around at our local park so that was one of the few things in the Pro column.

 

He hated the binary throttle and it took him months of being left alone to come around and want to learn it. I started him in the grass fields and I was surprised just how bumpy a field that looks smooth really is. Total lack of suspension another mark in the Con column. Eventually got him on the sidewalks and he had fun riding around and really enjoying it. I gave him time to learn and trust in the process and then tried to coach him to put his feet on the pegs but he wouldn't.

 

I eventually took it away from him until he was ready to ride it correctly. But then I bought a Boxster and thus he lost his chance. :-/

 

I actually have a big car again so I need to see if it will still hold a charge and see if he wants to start riding again.

 

Most important things I've learned are:

1- They have to feel safe

2- They have to have fun

3- Sometimes their priorities change places.

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