At What Age Did Your Child Learn to Ride a Bike?

by Dagmar Bleasdale on March 24, 2012

A few days ago I went to Toys R Us and bought Landon his first new, shiny, big boy bike.

It had to be put together, so Don and Landon picked it up yesterday while I was at a David Meister fashion show here in Westchester.

Before buying this bike, I had bought a used one for $10 at Once Upon a Child, but it was kind of too little and we never pumped up the tires enough. It was just lying around.

When I saw an ad that Toys R Us was giving a $20 credit for trading in a used bike, I made a point to trade in that old, rusty bike. I’m not really in a rush, but I figure it’s time that L learns to ride a bike.

I didn’t learn to ride a  bike until I was 7 years old in Germany because my parents didn’t think kids younger than that could react fast enough if they had to stop very fast if a car didn’t see them or that they could really understand the traffic rules.

Most Germans ride a bike for small distances instead of take a car, and there are bike paths next to most streets. So you end up riding a bike much more than the average American. I rode mine to school and to friends and into town for about eight years, until I got my first car when I was 19.

I bought L this bike because it’s silver and has a shark on the frame — he’s fascinated with sharks. He loves them almost as much as killer whales and dolphin.

When I came home from the fashion show, he proudly showed me how well he can ride it.

The saddle wasn’t the right height yet, but Don fixed that today. I bet L will be cruising around the house in no time without the training wheels.

Just in time for buying the next size, because I bought this one so he would be able to put both his feet down while learning to ride it.

At what age did your children learn to ride a bike? And how often do they actually ride it?


{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Erinn S March 28, 2012 at 11:31 AM

My 3 year old has his first bike and he is a bit discouraged, so he doesn’t ride much. I am going to wait a summer or two to reintroduce biking with him.


Jane March 27, 2012 at 8:42 AM

My kids all learned around age 5. We bought all our first bikes at garage sales and the first was small like yours so they could get their feet on the ground. (I remember trying to learn on a big bike that was always leaning way over due to the training wheels!) Next thing I know my husband took the training wheels off pronouncing “he never used them.”! To my surprise, it was a great decision. With some practice, my son learned how to properly balance and away he went! As they grew, we’d find another bike at a garage sale until they were much bigger and they each got a brand new bike.


Marcy March 27, 2012 at 12:44 AM

Oh and as for how often, he used to ride almost every day. Now it’s not as often, it’s harder to find the time since he’s in preschool and we have the baby and all. But for the first year that we had the bike he was almost always up for riding around the block (and much further)


Brenna @ Almost All The Truth March 27, 2012 at 12:42 AM

Hoping my health will cooperate with my plan, I would like my boys (8 & 6) to learn to ride a bike this summer. We live in an incredibly hilly area, with no bike lanes, and we don’t get to ride around the neighborhood like I used to as a kid.


Marcy March 27, 2012 at 12:42 AM

My 4yo was apparently waaay ahead of the curve– when he was just under 2yrs old we were hanging out lots with a slightly older girl down the street. She had a 12″ bike with training wheels. My son would hop on her bike and ride it up and down the street! He could just barely reach the pedals but figured out real fast how to use them. We got him his own bike about a month after his 2nd birthday, and worked him with lots on being able to brake quickly when needed. He’s always been a very safe rider, stopping when needed and waiting for us to catch up before crossing the street, etc. I now have a younger son who is 15 months, and has been beating big brother on all the physical milestones so far so I’m curious to see if he’ll also learn early…


Deb March 26, 2012 at 2:40 PM

My son was 5 when we took the training wheels off…although I’d say he really started to ride at 6. He rides his bike probably once a month. My daughter was 4 when we took off her training wheels, she rides weekly. Love the shark bike!


Desiree Fawn March 24, 2012 at 7:43 PM

Gretchen (3) is obsessed with her tricycle. Haven’t moved to a bigger bike at all yet, but probably will soon!


Tara March 24, 2012 at 7:22 PM

My big boys are 6, 4, & 2. My older 2 have yet to show an interest in riding a bike! I bought a small-ish bike with trainer wheels from a garage sale a few years ago and they weren’t interested at all! My theory is that if we expose our children to things that they will naturally become interested when they are developmentally ready to master that skill. I’ve had lots of friends comment that the boys don’t have bikes and that they’ll get teased…it hasn’t been an issue and we will pursue the ‘bike thing’ when they’re good and ready! :)


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