You may have got your child a new bike from Bike Club for Christmas, or recently exchanged their old bike for a larger one. In any case if you’re wondering about ways to get them active on their new bike, consider our cycling challenges for 2024.
In this blog, we delve into some new year challenges to get your child up and about on two wheels. As families gear up for a thrilling year ahead, we'll guide you through the exciting experience of planning your first family bike ride to setting up obstacle courses in the garden.
Learn to Ride
For many parents who've gifted their child their first bike from Bike Club this Christmas, teaching them how to ride is of course the first challenge.
Start by encouraging your little one to straddle the balance bike, keeping both feet firmly on the ground.
As they become comfortable, encourage them to walk or glide forward, gradually lifting their feet off the ground for short distances.
The intuitive design of balance bikes allows children to learn the crucial skill of balance without the added complexity of pedals.
Celebrate small victories, and with practice they will be able to cycle short distances with their feet up.
Begin in a flat, open area, preferably with a soft surface. You can remove the pedals initially to allow your child to focus solely on balance and steering. Encourage them to scoot and glide, gaining confidence in the forward motion.
Once comfortable, reattach the pedals, and guide them on the basics of pedaling, braking, and steering. Support them through the initial wobbles by holding them under their arms, gradually letting go as their confidence grows.
You can refer to our blog on teaching your child how to ride for more information.
Plan a First Family Bike Ride
Transforming your first family bike ride into a memorable adventure involves a bit of preparation and enthusiasm. It can seem a daunting logistical task at first but it is well worth it.
Choose a scenic and family-friendly route that accommodates varying skill levels, ensuring everyone feels comfortable and engaged. Make sure that the first ride is not too far, start with a short route close to home to build everyones confidence.
You can read our full blog on planning a family bike ride for more details.
Cycle Further than You’ve Gone Before
If you’re child is already an experienced cyclist then why not set yourselves a challenge of going on your longest ride yet.
Whether it's a gradual increase in distance or tackling a more challenging terrain, encourage your young cyclists to aim for new milestones.
Plan a route that stretches their endurance a bit, ensuring a balance between challenge and enjoyment. This challenge not only expands physical horizons but instills a sense of achievement.
You can even consider Bike Touring, which involves covering large distances and sometimes camping along the way.
Bike Time Trials
Elevate the cycling excitement for your young riders by introducing a time-based challenge.
Timing oneself on a bike not only adds a thrilling element but also encourages a healthy sense of competition and self-improvement.
Choose a familiar route or a designated circuit, and challenge your children to complete it in record time.
This not only enhances their speed and agility but also fosters a sense of accomplishment as they strive to beat their own previous records. Emphasise the importance of pacing and strategy in getting an optimal time.
Create a DIY Bike Obstacle Course
Transform your backyard or a nearby open space into a playground of challenges. Use household items to create a course that tests their biking prowess.
From weaving through cones to navigating makeshift ramps, this challenge not only enhances their agility but also turns biking into an exciting adventure.
Encourage them to design their own course, fostering their creativity. It can also involve just chalking the driveway into a snaking path of loops and hairpin turns.
Participate in a Charity Bike Ride for Kids
Elevate your child's biking journey beyond personal accomplishments by introducing the meaningful challenge of participating in a charity bike ride.
Identify local charity events or organise a community ride dedicated to a cause close to their hearts.
It also makes for a nice day out with the family, and will give them a sense of accomplishment and empathy.
Learn Bike Safety Skills with your Children
Safety is paramount in the world of cycling, especially for young adventurers. As your little ones embrace the thrill of their new bikes, it’s important they master essential bike safety skills.
Begin by emphasising the importance of helmets at all times.
Teach them the significance of hand signals and basic road awareness, instilling habits that will stay with them throughout their cycling journey. Create a routine safety checklist together, covering brake checks, tire inflation, and ensuring that reflectors are in place.
For more info you can refer to our handy bike safety guide.
Try out Mountain Biking
With Bike Club's subscription service, you can exchange their bike for a bigger one when they outgrow it, ensuring a perfect fit for every stage of their cycling development.
You can introduce your children to the thrill of tackling rugged terrains, navigating trails, and conquering natural obstacles by getting them a mountain bike.