Jett finally learned to ride his bike last weekend. He’s not as naturally gifted as some kids at physical activity, so this is quite an achievement and he should be very proud. We’ve had him practicing his balance by riding on his Razor Scooter for the last two weekends, and he finally got up the courage to tackle his bike sans trainer wheels. I wanted to have a ceremonial tossing of the trainer wheels into the wheelie bin, but he still wants to keep them around in case he forgets how to ride. It followed pretty much the same script as how most kids learn to ride: dad holds the back of their bike for a few test runs, giving pointers on balance and steering along the way. Then on one pass, dad keeps running along while the child is unaware that dad is no long providing any support after surreptitiously removing his hand from the back of the bike. Sometimes panic sets in and the child realises that he’s no longer being held up and is under his own power, but Jett had such a look of exhileration! It was a good moment for him.
It didn’t quite end all that well, though. He still has trouble pushing off from a standing start so he needs a hand to get going but once he’s got a little speed up he can keep going. At least, he’s OK until he needs to turn. Still needs to practice a bit.
And, yes, he did have a spill. I thought he was going to keep it under control but he got a bit of a slow motion “death wobble” happening and the front wheel slid out. He landed pretty squarely on his face, cutting his lip and leaving a couple wobbly teeth. This was ironically after we agreed that safety is important, and wearing a helmet would be a good idea. I’ll bet he’s wishing he was wearing a full face helmet. He didn’t cry as much as I expected, which is good, and I think he’ll be ready to give it a go again next week.