Teach your child to ride a bike in 3 EASY steps!

July 8, 2018

I’ve taught a couple of kids now, how to ride their bikes and it’s always made me proud when they finally master it. But recently I discovered a fantastic new way of teaching and I honestly never realised how quick and easy it could be! I absolutely swear you could teach your child to ride a bike by the end of the day with no stabilisers with this method. Probably even in just an hour! And all it takes is 3 super easy steps.  


All you need is:
A bike (with pedals)
A spanner.
A child that wants to learn.
Oh, and don’t forget the helmet!

To teach your child to ride a bike you will need to start by making sure their seat is the right height. They need to be able to sit on it and be able to reach the ground with both feet flat.
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Child in shorts and tshirts sitting on a white bike near a brick wall

Make sure the bike is the right size for your child


Teach your child to ride a bike

Balance Bike

For step one, you will need to take off the pedals. When the pedals are off, your child will be able to scoot the bike along with both feet. If they have never ridden a bike at all before, this might take some getting used to, however, if they’ve had a balance bike, they’ll be off like a shot.  They should get faster as though they are running with the bike. This is to get them used to the speed and feel of the bike and learn to control it. You can draw marks on the floor, lay cones out for them to go around or even put a couple of crisps or biscuits out that they can aim for and crush. Keep doing this until they have it mastered.


Once they have mastered that, your child should be able to lift his or her feet up for longer periods of time. This them puts the control of the bike in the steering rather than the feet. Get them to scoot as they were and build up speed and then count backwards from 3. When you get to one, get them to keep their feet off the ground.

a boy and his dad. Boy is sitting on the bike whilst dad tightens the pedals. boy is wearing an orange coat and green helmet

Tightening up the pedals. Ready to go

Do this in short bursts, gradually dragging them out and getting longer. When they can do this, they are ready for pedals.


Introducing pedals

Put the pedals back on the bike. Your child will now need to continue scooting but this time, just with one foot,  The other foot needs to remain on the pedal at the bottom (in the 6 O’clock position). Start slowly and just scooting at first and then get them to build up again to lifting their other foot off the ground. Once they can keep one foot on the pedal and one foot in the air and keep control of a rolling bike for a couple of seconds, they are very nearly, almost there… and you can probably see where I’m going with this.


Scoot, scoot… Pedal!

So.. Your child can now control the bike with no feet on the floor and keep it upright. They can push off to start the bike with one foot on a pedal. The final step is the easiest bit.

Encourage your child to push off from the stationary position again by doing a couple of scoots and then lifting their other foot up. Only this time, they need to put their second foot on the pedal and push it.

And just like that, your child has just started the bike on their own and is now pedalling in front of you.
Once your child is confident in cycling alone, you can go on bike rides and go for picnics together. There is a whole list of ideas in my post on how to have a frugal summer and bike riding  is just the tip of the iceberg

Your child has just learnt to ride a bike and as far as skills for life go, that’s the ultimate. Because you never forget how to ride a bike!

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  • Reply Jules Pondering Parenthood July 8, 2018 at 6:38 pm

    This is very clever, and saves the need for a balance bike, as you can just get a bike and remove the pedals! I’ll definitely be using this method when it’s time for M to learn to ride a bike.

    • Reply Leslie Rickerby July 8, 2018 at 6:50 pm

      Exactly, and it means they are already used to the bike too without having to change it. It’s such an easy method.

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