learning to ride a bike

Barbara - posted on 04/24/2009 ( 18 moms have responded )

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I have an 8 yr old son who still cannot ride a bike as he cant seem to balance no matter how much i try running along holding the saddle. Also he has now decided he does not even want to learn to ride it (because hes a bit defeatist). Hes also an over cautious kid and scared of falling off. Does anyone else have a child with aspergers who cannot ride or have no interest in doing so due to lack of balance/coordination, and any ideas on getting him past this? Ive tried telling him how much fun he will have on his bike once he can ride it but his answer to that is ' i can have fun on my feet'.

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Aimee - posted on 05/08/2009

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My twins (PDD-NOS and Asperger's supposedly) at almost eight cannot ride a bike...but we haven't really tried to help them for various reasons. They have accidents just going through our garage, or playing in the yard! They've wiped out on their scooters, we live right next to a major highway going into a metropolitan area, they won't wear their helmets and before they lost/outgrew them they wouldn't wear them properly & didn't like the tightness under the chin...O.K. I DON'T THINK I'M READY FOR IT MYSELF...smiling...

Lisa-Jayne - posted on 05/06/2009

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Hello, I have a 7 yr old daughter with Asperger's and Epilepsy. She cannot and will not ride a bike. Our two other daughters, (one older, one younger) both enjoy riding their bikes, but Juliana, partly because of fear, has no interest at all. We have decided to not push the issue. If one day she shows an interest then we can help her with it, otherwise, it is not worth causing her stress over.

Anneka - posted on 04/24/2009

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Hi,
My son was 8 when he started riding. He was the same way. He was scared to fall, and would say similar things. "I don't have to ride my bike, you have a car." It took two of my friends and a very laidback situation. We were all on rollerblades and he wanted to follow us. There was no WAY he was gonna get on rollerblades so I mentioned, "well if you had your bike, you could keep up with us that way." They helped him and were very patient. I but elbow, knee pads and a helmet on him and within two days he had the basic concept. Now he has a little mini motorcycle that he rides (gas powered) all around. So maybe if you tried riding or something, and don't make it seem like you're trying to get him to ride, but rather just ride around laughing and giggling and talking about what a great time you're having. Maybe that will inspire him. I took a couple spills in front of him, got up, washed my knee off and said "well that happens sometimes, but it's not that bad." Every child is different, but having someone else help him worked for us, I'm not sure it would for you guys, but I think we, as parents, tend to expect a lot sometimes, and can seem kind of hard to impress. Maybe if there was someone that wasn't in an "enforcing" type of position, that would be a little easier. I soo hope you find something that works, and if not, maybe just seeing the other kids ride will inspire him. : )

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Julie - posted on 01/08/2012

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I have a daughter who will turn 9 next month and she is the same way - she can't balance and has no interest in learning to ride a bike. I don't know what to do either.

User - posted on 04/08/2010

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My little guy just turned six and it is his dad's desire for him to ride a bike. He has real balance/co-ordination issues, so this is a huge challenge for him. As well, wearing a helmet is a huge sensory turn-off for him. He has a new bike at home, but where he is really learning is riding the bike at the Toys r Us store. The floor is smooth, level, and we go when it isn't busy. I let him get on the bike, or help if needed. He is learning the co-ordination aspect of how to pedal, and that is a big deal. It is definitely easier riding a bike inside the store than on the sidewalk, where even a little dip can make him feel like he has lost control of the bike.

Good luck.

Sheila

Tami - posted on 04/06/2010

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I have the same issue and would love answers too. My 8 year old is also afraid of falling off and seems afraid of going fast enough to maintain balance on a bike let alone learn how to do it. He does not want to take the training wheels off his bike and freaks out when we suggest it but he is getting heavy enough where he is pushing them out of alignment anyway loses his balance and falls over and is like "see that is what I was afraid would happen." UGGH! Please let me know of any suggestions. I would like them too.

Amy - posted on 05/08/2009

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For my little sister to help her get over her fear I got her a pad set including hand gaurds, I showed her how even though if you fell you would hit the ground, the pads would keep her from getting hurt, once she got past the fear of falling she did great.

User - posted on 05/08/2009

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My 11 year old son Sam was exactly as you describe your son. He point blank refused to keep trying, even with stabilizers, as he didn't want to hurt himself and because it took more than 10 mins to learn! He learnt to ride, on his own, about 2 weeks before his 11th birthday and now, 7 months later, is the proud and confident owner of a gold BMX which he loves (although we insist he wears a full helmet which looks a bit like a motorcycle helmet as he falls off quite a lot still!) We happened to find a small girls bike, about 18', and Sam was walking it up and down the road trying to find the owner. He then sat on the seat and pulled himself along with his feet on the ground. I think because it was that much smaller, he never fell as his feet were always in close reach of the floor. He then gained confidence and put one foot, then the other on the pedals and just 'went for it' as he said. It took him 2 hours but that was enough to give him the confidence to try again. Don't give up hope, it does come to them in time x

Janet - posted on 05/06/2009

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My son did not have trouble riding a bike, but until YESTERDAY he could/would not tie his own shoes. We encouraged him, but did not pressure him. Yesterday something just "clicked" in him and he began doing it on his own. Keep working with your son - it will happen in his own time frame.

Francie - posted on 05/03/2009

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My AS son was 10 before he learned to ride a bike. Like your son, he was overly cautious and afraid he would hurt himself. We bought him a new bike (one that fit) for his birthday hoping that he would be motivated to learn to use it. My husband and I also rode our bikes a fair bit so that he would want to come with. We found a park with a grassy hill to get him started (the grass cushioned the falls and the hill helped him get enough speed up to keep his balance). That said, it took a lot of patient practice - but once he got it, he loved it and still loves riding his bike every chance he gets.

Jo-Ann - posted on 05/02/2009

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YES!!! My son is almost 12, aspergers, and over cautious, defeatist etc. If you figure out a way to teach them to ride PLEASE let me know. I've tried every trick in the book and even though he seems to have good balance in other areas, bike riding is beyond him. We finally bought him a 3-wheeler (adult size) and it's the best investment I ever made. WalMart has them at a reasonable price and he loves going on bike rides with us now. ...

Heather - posted on 05/02/2009

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they told us my son would never ride a bike as she doesnt have balance control . we worked hard and lond and now he can ride a bike better than most people.my son has aspergers and its hard my son just learned to tie his shoes and he is 14 some things come easier than others it will come it just takes time.

Barbara - posted on 05/01/2009

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Thankyou all for your comments, i will keep persevering with this. I have got him gliding along with his feet on the ground now to try and get his balance, so fingers crossed he will be peddling soon..........

Clarisa - posted on 04/30/2009

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when my son was in kindergarten his teacher was a speed racer. she would show them tapes of her races and after that Daniel was hooked he would not give up. The pedals would make the tops of his feet bleed but he never gave up. Try getting films or pictures. It couldn't hurt. Daniel is now 23 and rides everywhere. I don't know which is worse. Not riding and not knowing where he is? Cell phones are a blessing, at least I can find him.

Patty - posted on 04/30/2009

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My son turned 8 this past December. He has PDD-NOS. Just last weekend he started riding his bike without the training wheels. I was so proud of him and he was super proud of himself. Your son sounds a lot like how my son was. We have been working on riding for the past 3 years. He would always say "I can't do it", "it's too hard" - I just kept trying to be positive and tell him he can do it. Last spring he did wipe out and scrape his knee then was afraid to ride again for a couple of months. He did try again at the end of last summer and fall. We told him to just push his bike with his feet and practice balancing while gliding, I think that helped. My son is very, very motivated by prizes so this year when he found a pokemon creepy crawler oven that he really wanted I told him I would buy it for him when he could ride his bike. That really got him going! We took him to the park where it was grassy and pretty flat and started there, it took a few days but he finally got it. Then we moved on to the tennis courts and now on to the sidewalks. It is so great and he really is having fun on his bike. Good luck!

Cindy - posted on 04/24/2009

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Hi,

What a co-incidince, I was just wondering about kids with autism, and learning to ride a bike today.



My son is turning seven this year and started riding his bike when he was five, when we bought him a Spiderman bike for his birhtday. Before that he just played sith his small bike's and tricycle's wheels. Until he crashed into the gate, nothing serious though. I encouraged him to get on again, but he wouldn't. we didn't know that he had autism then. His bike has been unused since then. My dad fixed it up again today and hopefully he will start riding again soon. PS Still with training wheels, but who cares!

Dawn - posted on 04/24/2009

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We bought our son the training wheels that you raise or lower the wheels.. We raised them alittle each week as he got better and was forced to balance on his own... and after awhile he was able to take them off and off he went not even thinking about them.. good luck..

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