My son has been having difficulties when it comes to making progress to riding his bike. I have tried to take him out to practice as much as I can however, I just can’t run beside him as long as he wants to practice. Running and I have never gotten along.
I decided on the solution. I was going to get my own bike and ride with him. I used to love riding. I would spend hours just going round and round the neighborhood. Unfortunately this was Twelve years ago and I haven’t had a bike to ride since then.
I should have taken into consideration a couple of things that would change how capable I am of riding a bike.
- I have had a kid since the last time so my center of balance changed a bit when, my hips got wider and my chest got a little fuller.
- I grew a few more inches. Once again changing my center of gravity.
- I haven’t had to balance on anything like I did when I was a kid on balance beams and such. I have no clue where my center of gravity is at this point in my life and bike riding really relies on you balancing.
My first clue should have been at the store, when I was testing out the bike I wanted. I could get on it okay, but when I tried to ride it a few feet I wobbled on couldn’t keep my feet from the floor. “No problem.” I told myself. “its just the slick laminated floor. I just can’t get any traction.” That may have been true only I should have worried a bit more about whether or not the problem was me. My first clue should have been the store associate telling me where the elbow and knee pads were. Especially since she had this really worried look on her face.
After getting a helmet( I may not want pads but helmets are good.) I took it home, I got it all set up and ready to go. I wanted to test and see how long I could ride before I had to pick Wesley up from school. I may exercise but this uses different muscles then I am used to using.
The problem I had at the store, well it still happened when I got out on the road. I felt like a clown. I wobbled this way and that. I fell down a lot. I didn’t understand it. There is even a whole saying about how once you know how to ride a bike you don’t forget.
I only had an hour before I had to leave and I was determined to be able to go on a bike ride with my son when he got home. So I fell and got back up. wobbled all around. I probable looked like I was a clown in the circus. I finally did it though. I was anything but graceful at this point, but I could ride and not fall down.
Wesley was excited when he got home and he was so happy to ride as long as he wanted to. I think he laughed at me a little when I would wobble, but the more we rode the better my riding got.
Wesley still has a long way to go before he can start trying to learn to ride without training wheels, maybe by the end of summer he will be ready. I am happy to say I look much more graceful on the bike. I can even take my hands off the handle bars. Not for very long but I can do it.
To whoever came up with the saying “its just like riding a bike.” You are very misleading. That sentence makes it sound like its easy to just pick back up where you left off. I have to say that its not. You may still have the general concept of how to do it but implementing the practice of riding a bike again, well it full of trial and error, bumps and bruises, and embarrassment.