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Author Topic: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?  (Read 1935 times)

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Thipu1

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #30 on: December 20, 2015, 10:56:56 AM »
Like others here, I learned to ride a bike when I was about 6.  I rode it to school when the weather was good.  My friends and I would disappear on our bikes most days during the summer and on Saturdays during the school year.  The rule was, make yourself a sandwich, take a piece of fruit and a dime to buy a drink along the way.  Have fun but be back before supper.  To make sure we had no excuses, every kid also had a wristwatch.  That was the life of a kid in the 1950s.   

I haven't rode a bike for decades and doubt if I could manage it now But I was glad to have that childhood experience.  It gave us freedom but we also learned to be responsible. 

 

Carotte

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #31 on: December 20, 2015, 02:03:10 PM »
I learned before I was 6 (no idea when, I just know I learned before moving/starting school) and rode often between 6 and 10 with my father or with friends.
Then I moved again and didn't have any riding opportunities for a few years.
I last rode this summer and didn't have any accident so I guess it stuck  :P
The whole changing gear tho was a bit overwhelming, we were on a rough forest trail, half the time in the mud, and frankly that experience wasn't the best one to get me interested in riding again.

What never stuck was riding with only one hand on the handlebar, so I refuse to ride in the city since I can't signal a turn, and even if I did I'm weary of the traffic and would rather not.

I faintly remember my older brother having to learn riding again, I think he had had an accident/fall that left a pretty bad memory and had refused to get back on seat for a while but since where we lived a bike was pretty usefull and all his friends rode he started again, on my bike, which I found annoying of course, and the only reason why I even noticed :)
He got his own bike after a while.

jpcher

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #32 on: December 20, 2015, 02:09:36 PM »
The seat was so high that I could not reach the ground when I sat on it.
One brother held the bike. The other got me onto it, explained how to pedal, ran along side for a few feet then let go.
No one bothered to tell me how to stop.  A barbed wire fence was my first brake.   :-\

OUCH!

DD#2 learned how to ride a bike fairly quickly, within a week. But the first time she went down the street with training wheels on, I followed behind her. When we were nearing the corner I said "slow down now." She didn't. I yelled "Stop! Stop!" While I was frantically trying to catch up to her in order to grab her before she got to the street she forced herself and bike over, falling into the grass.

I knelt down next to her, she looked up and me and said "How do I stop?"

Yup. Huge parenting fail. I figured that since she knew how to stop her tricycle she'd know how to stop a bicycle. I guess she didn't get the connection and it was something that I should have explained to her. ::)


Anyway, a few days later she said she was ready to take the training wheels off. Big thumbs up for confidence! I thought she was ready, the training wheels barely touched the ground. No go. At the end of that session she became frustrated because she fell every time I let go. She asked for the training wheels to be put back on.

The next day she had a play-date with one of her friends. I went outside with her to put the training wheels on. Friend and mom came down the sidewalk on their bikes and DD#2 noticed Friend did not have training wheels. DD#2 looked at me, the "Oh no!" shock look on her face turned to determination. She walked her bike to where Friend was, looked back at me and asked "Can we go?"

I said "You know the rules. To the corner and back." I really, really, really, wanted to ask her "are you sure?" or just go out and hold on to the back of her seat or explain to mom that she doesn't quite have the hang of it yet, but that adorable look on my sweet 5-yr old daughters face that said "MOMMY! Don't embarrass me!" made me step back.

There were several false starts, but she did not fall (she caught herself with her feet). A few wibbly woggly moves with the steering, but by the time she got to Friend (who was already at the corner) she was moving along smoothly. They had a chat at the corner (I think Friend was giving her a few tips) and when they rode back to the other corner? DD#2 looked like she knew what she was doing. ;D




I'm loving all of your stories! I really think the push-bike thing without pedals is a great way to teach young ones balance -- now I know what to get my grandkids for bday gifts! (whenever they come)  ;)


Klein Bottle

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #33 on: December 20, 2015, 02:14:22 PM »
I was five, and it was in the late summer, right before I started Kindergarten. The parsonage for a neighborhood Baptist church was right down our street, and the family living there at that time had a daughter close to my age. Her name was Sarah, and she was a genuinely nice girl, who happened to have a small bicycle without training wheels. She was very patient with me that summer in letting me practice on her bike! My best friend across the street had a bike, also, but, hers was a little larger than Sarah's, so I preferred (felt less intimidated) learning on the smaller one. One sunny morning, everything just "clicked", and I rode all the way up the street on Sarah's bike! I remember blowing a fake boat horn as I had seen someone do for real on TV. It was such a free, glorious feeling! That following Christmas, my parents got me my own bike, a red one, which the neighborhood bad girl eventually stole. Then they got me a purple one with a banana seat. There is a problematic story attached to that one, also: I overheard my dad chastised my mom for spending the money on it, and it made me uneasy. Going forward, my youngest brother "borrowed" a bike of mine when we were young adults, and he messed it up beyond repair. And, when I turned forty, my parents gave me this awesome mountain bike for my birthday. A neighborhood guy known to be a problem broke in my garage and stole it before I ever had a chance to ride it.

One day, I will own a bike that doesn't get disapproved, broken, or stolen. I love riding a bike, and the memory of finally balancing on Sarah's overrides all the negativity.

My own kid learned how just as his Kindergarten year was coming to a close. We lived in a quiet residential neighborhood, on a corner lot with a side street which saw hardly any traffic. We practiced all spring, and he was so happy when he finally got it. He lived on that bike for many a summer, and eventually, a bigger one.

My favorite bike story takes place when I was in eighth grade. A boy in my class had problems. He was clueless and obnoxious, and nobody liked him, but many of us, me included, always tried to include him and be nice to him. He had been infantalized by his parents, and that year, our very good-looking young gym teacher found out that Davie couldn't ride a bicycle. So, Mr. Jones brought in a used bike, and spent his free periods outside in the school parking lot teaching Davie. We could see it through the window of my English class, and a lot of the kids thought it was hilarious. I thought it was great! Mr. Jones was very encouraging of all of us, (he took note of my running speed and put me on his track team; I had never been encouraged in endeavors that weren't academic before), and the fact that he cared enough about this kid nobody liked...it's still one of the best examples of human kindness I have ever seen, let alone, how a teacher should be. I have to say, we opened the window and cheered the day Davie got it, even the mean kids.
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Sirius

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #34 on: December 20, 2015, 02:29:59 PM »
I know how, but it's been a long time.  My dad taught me by doing much the same thing as the OP's daughter's friend did - pushing my bike then letting it go.

marcel

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #35 on: December 20, 2015, 09:35:18 PM »
I am Dutch. This means that riding a bicycle is part of my culture. It is impossible to grow up here and not learn how to ride a bike. Most people from other countries have no clue what it means to live in a bike centric culture, but Dutch people will do big loads of grocery shopping, carry their friends, ride with 2 bikes at the same time, and do many more things that are normal for us and strange for most foreigners. it is normal for a person not to have a car, and easily manage, however if you don't have a bicycle things will get more complicated here.

In a culture like this, it is easy to understand that i learned to ride a regular bike when I was 4. I don't remember much about it.
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Luci

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #36 on: December 21, 2015, 12:08:26 AM »
My mother did not ride a bike because she lived in the country and had a horse. Dad was a neighbor and one of 9, so I never heard of a bike in his past, just running everywhere. He did teach me to ride in the winter I turned 7, then that summer I rode off a cliff and ended up in the hospital for 17 days. (Oh! My poor parents and brother! It must have been so tough for them.)

They did let me start riding again as soon as the doctor let me. I rode until I went to college, then Lucas and I bought bikes and kids' seats about 8 years later. I used to put my preschooler on the baby seat and go 3 miles to the bank and shopping regularly. I felt kind of silly in the drive through lane at the bank, but they got used to us. I fell with my 2 year old on the back, but it didn't seem to damage him because he started riding when he was five after teaching his older sister to ride, and now does triathlons at the age of 44.

I don't remember when or why we quit, but I guess it was when I was in my 30s. It still hangs in the garage. I'm 70, and no way would I try to ride again. Lucas fixed his 1955 Schwin up and rode it about 1/2 mile a day for a while a couple of years ago. His 5 gear bike is hanging in the garage, too.

geekette

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #37 on: December 21, 2015, 07:42:33 PM »
I cannot ride a bike.

There are many reasons for this. First of all, Geek-dad was a terrible teacher in every way. Secondly, he got angry and impatient with me. Thirdly, he tried to teach me on a farm road - completely uneven surface, and going uphill. So I didn't learn as a kid. I walked places instead.

I tried to learn as a teenager, and as a young adult later. Friends tried to teach me. But unfortunately, the other reasons are that fourthly, I have balance problems (similar in nature to Curly Wurly's, but from the sounds of it not as severe). Fifthly, I have ankle problems, so I wasn't able the pedal strongly enough.

There are more reasons, but at that point I just decided that "I don't want to" was good enough.

demarco

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #38 on: December 21, 2015, 08:11:35 PM »
I learned to ride the summer I was six. We were staying with my aunt in Maine at the end of a several miles long dirt road. Neighbors across the street had a very long (hundreds of feet)  sloping driveway, also dirt with lots of rocks in it. I tried to ride on the dirt road but could not keep my balance. Someone got the bright idea of starting me down the sloping driveway. I picked up a lot of speed on the way down. I think that helped me balance  because I made it all the way down the driveway without falling and made the turn onto the road with no trouble. There was so little traffic on that road I didn't have to worry about cars and I had a great time riding my bike for the rest of the summer.

It is possible to forget how to ride a bike. DH got an old bike of ours fixed up for me as a surprise a few years ago. I hadn't ridden for ten years or so. I rode down our driveway, barely keeping my balance then tried to turn and ended up tipping right over in slow motion. It was awful.   


Hmmmmm

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #39 on: December 21, 2015, 08:21:31 PM »
I learned when I was 5 in the early 70s. I was youngest of 4. The family had a small bike we all learned on that was probably 12 years old by the time it was handed down to me. My sister who was 3 years older taught me by having me ride down a small hill. She figured once I learned the old bike would go to me and she'd get a new one. It worked.

 I got my first new bike for Xmas when I was 7. It was a pink 3 speed with banana seat, white basket with yellow daisies.

GreenEyedHawk

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #40 on: December 25, 2015, 12:32:26 PM »
I am Dutch. This means that riding a bicycle is part of my culture. It is impossible to grow up here and not learn how to ride a bike. Most people from other countries have no clue what it means to live in a bike centric culture, but Dutch people will do big loads of grocery shopping, carry their friends, ride with 2 bikes at the same time, and do many more things that are normal for us and strange for most foreigners. it is normal for a person not to have a car, and easily manage, however if you don't have a bicycle things will get more complicated here.

In a culture like this, it is easy to understand that i learned to ride a regular bike when I was 4. I don't remember much about it.

I'm fascinated by this; it must be so much better for the environment that the majority of people ride bikes instead of driving cars.  My city just implemented a public bike program; specially marked bikes are parked at racks in the city that are free for citizens to borrow and return as needed.  I believe the bikes are fitted with some type of GPS tracker so that if they aren't returned, they can be retrieved.  I want to try it out but I am of short stature and the bikes are too big for me.

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Micah

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #41 on: December 25, 2015, 06:10:32 PM »
I can ride a bike. For a long time it was my only form of transport. I got my first bike when I was about six. It had training wheels. I rode it with the training wheels for a while, then just took them off myself and rode it. My parents weren't neglectful, we were just poor and they worked hard. A lot of traditional parent child 'milestones' I just did by myself.

When I was a teenager I used to ride to the library, then ride home no hands, reading. How I never caused an accident I'll never know. I speed read, so I'd read about half a page in a few seconds, look where I was going, read a bit more, etc.

As an adult I worked night shift at a service station and rode to and from work. After nearly getting mown down several times, I brought four of the best bicycle lights you could buy and lit myself up like a Christmas tree. It all ended when a rabbit ran into my front wheel one night. Snapped every spoke in the wheel, buckled the forks and got some epic gravel rash. I finally went and got my license after that and brought a cheap car.

My son was taught to ride by a friend of ours. He was extremely drunk at the time (the friend, not son), but he did a good job. Son got a new (very expensive, phew!) bike for Christmas this year. We're rural and the local kids ride EVERYWHERE. If you don't have a bike, you're likely to get left out/behind, or stuck dinking with a mate.
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Allyson

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #42 on: December 29, 2015, 02:05:22 PM »
I can, and it's kind of a marvel to me that I did learn. I have always been uncoordinated and no good at physical things; picked last for gym class, slowest runner, always covered in bumps and bruises. Part of this is a vision issue nobody discovered till I was 12. My younger brother learned to ride a bike at 5 or so, but I was about 9 before I got it. I remember trying, everyone trying to help me, all the usual techniques not working. Then one day I decided to practise on my own, and somehow it all clicked and I got it! I biked regularly for a few years, but stopped as a teenager and never took it up again. Due to my eyesight it's not a great idea for me to do it; many crashes occurred, though none serious.

Chip2

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Re: Do you know how to ride a bicycle?
« Reply #43 on: December 30, 2015, 10:16:52 AM »
I definitely agree with the earlier poster who said you do indeed forget how to ride a bike - I recently tried for the first time in many, many years (a Mike's Bike's city tour in Munich) and it definitely took about 20 minutes before I felt comfortable on it. Turning was the worst - I kept trying to lean like you would to turn on skis, rather than actually turning the wheels! ;)

Actually, unless you're going very slow, leaning (not turning the handlebars) is how you steer a bike. That's how I taught my kids; I told them if they wiggled the handlebars they'd crash. They figured it out pretty quick.

When I was in my twenties I relearned how to ride a bike by using rollers (basically a treadmill for bicycles). Riding on rollers is very tricky; any movement you make is amplified back to the wheels and, well, look at the link:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A7UFwHWSnGM

I was smart:  I set my rollers between a wall and my bed. The inevitable crashes weren't painful at all.