Ever struggled to get you little ones to ride a bike without stabilisers? Then I think I have found a great little way to assist them, build their confidence and get them riding on their own. BikyBiky have created a fabulous soft padded cycle vest that is aimed to support those aged 2 to 7 years old and will take a weight of up to 50kg.
I have two children, a rather sporty 8yr old who insisted on ditching her stabilisers at age 4 and within a few days was confidently cycling along on her own and a 5yr old boy who has been rather reluctant and lacking confidence in all areas. He finally ditched his armbands in the swimming pool on our Summer holiday this year so my next area to target was riding without stabilisers before his sixth birthday.
We managed to buy some new larger bikes for the children earlier in the Summer from a friend, but they came without stabilisers. We knew this would be our opportunity to give Mister B the extra push he needed to get riding and we wanted to try to achieve this before the Winter and before he turned 6.
The BikyBiky jacket is really well made, has exceptionally strong velcro and feels really snug and secure on. I was very impressed with it as I wasn’t too sure how well it would fit or how durable it would be, but this is built to last. Mister B was chuffed with it too and loved the little velcro badge on the front.
On the back is a handle for an adult to hold or grab should the need arise. Over the last few months we have had numerous attempts at getting Mister B to ride, with daddy holding the back of the saddle (back breaking work!) but we really were getting nowhere and as soon as we let go, Mister B would fall to one side. He was incredibly wobbly, lacked confidence and we just couldn’t make it off the driveway. With the jacket on and daddy holding the handle on the back, it left Mister B a little nervous at first as no one was holding onto the bike. I’d be lying if I didn’t say the first couple of weeks consisted of Mister giving up every 5 minutes and daddy getting a little annoyed at his lack of determination.
But after a few days break, they tried again and the next thing I knew I was being called out to the drive to see a little boy with a huge grin on his face, saying “I can do it mummy, I can ride my bike!”
I managed to capture one of his first few wobbly rides in action, see below:
From this day onwards his confidence has grown. Within just a few weeks he can cycle alone, albeit a little wobbly. We are fortunate to have recently moved and have a supermarket 5 minutes walk from us, so on a Sunday afternoon after closing, we have been taking the children round there for Mister B to really practice freely as the pavements by us are a little uneven and he tends to veer into the garden walls or towards a parked car! The car park allows him to really get to grips with his balance and steering, oh and to practice breaking of course which he forgot to do one time and ended up cycling straight into a large metal recycling bottle bank – oops!
Here he is practising with his sister:
He has come so far in the last few weeks and this is all down to the BikyBiky cycling harness. I highly recommend this and just wish I had discovered it last year, as I’m sure he would have been riding back then. It is brilliant, such a great product and a few people that have seen it at our house have been really impressed too.
A cute little extra that comes with the BikyBiky jacket is a pop out certificate enclosed on the cardboard hanger. Mister B was eager to get his and wrote his own name on it once he had proved he could ride and couldn’t wait for me to sign it to make it official – bless him!
I’m so proud of my 5yr old’s achievements this year and look forward to him turning six later this month, now as a 2 wheeled cyclist and a swimmer without the need for buoyancy aids. Yay!!!
Teaching the kids how to ride a first balance bike without stabilisers can be quite a difficult or a back breaking task. I taught my eldest by holding on for dear life and either helping her hold the handle bars or hold the seat or just by holding onto her. Going down a hill is always fun, however, it really hurt my back bending over at funny angles. My son has used, very successfully a Balance Bike, which has been amazing. He actually got really fast on it, but, there are no peddles…obviously as it’s just for balance. So when we got him his first proper bike at 4 years old, he felt nervous on it and said the peddles got in the way…..well…..we have tried and tried, and eventually he started to like the peddles…woohoo! Now starts the mission of balancing and peddles at the same time. After holding on and hurting my back we started to get somewhere again. He’s quite confident riding on the grass, as if he falls, it doesn’t hurt as much as the pavement. So, when I saw BikyBiky and their amazing Strap on Vest, I jumped at the chance to try it!