“Hey! I’m getting the Strider, it’s a new balance bike!”
“Strider??? What the heck is that?? She’s only 2 years old leh… can ride bike meh??”
That was when I first heard about the Strider. Ok.. 1st thing 1st.. Google it… Hmm… Looks interesting.
Parents usually put their children on the training wheels before progressing to the normal bicycle. However, the training wheels actually impede the learning process. Because, being able to ride the bicycle is all about balancing and children only learn how to pedal (which is not too difficult to pick up) and not how to balance. So in comes the Strider – the balance bicycle.
Notice anything special about it? Haha. I get asked this question all the time whenever I bring her out. Where are the pedals!? Yes. No pedals. It makes use of pure kinetic energy (pushing the bike with feet, hehe). The seat is adjusted to the height at which 宝贝 can comfortably put both feet down to balance herself if she thinks she’s falling over. And the center of gravity is low enough to make sure that she doesn’t hurt herself. And of course the stylo-milo helmet helps. Doesn’t she look professional. *grin*
Well that’s her present for her 2nd Birthday in September 2011. We seldom buy toys for her. All her toys are hand-me-downs and she’s perfectly happy playing with them. So this is her first real big toy and quite an extravagant one. But I figured, if she can balance, she will be able to cycle, ski, skate and do all forms of balancing sports. *wu Hua ah!! (I’m secretly planning for a ski trip and leave papa behind! ho ho ho!)
She started off in September 2011 like this ….
Hehe… crawling like a snail.. But I like to think that she’s building up her muscles…
The shop (The Little Bike Shop) that brought in the Strider even created a Strider community where we frequent the various parks in Singapore. Children put in more effort when they see others doing better than them in the same thing. You will still see the huge bunch of us at these places – East Coast Park, Pasir Ris Park, Botanical Gardens etc. It gave her lots of practice!!
One of the photos taken at East Coast Park, during one of the outings. Notice the little boy behind on the Orange Strider?
3 months down the road… She has improved tremendously. She can now glide a short distance!
6 months from the day she received the strider…
She can now balance very very well on the strider and that’s down a gentle slope!
She’s now at total ease on her strider. Stride, glide and even maneuver a turn! Almost ready for a full fledge bicycle.. Except that I don’t think I’m ready to chase her when she’s on a real bicycle. I will need to train up more to run after her! Pant.. pant… Ah.. I can see us doing all kinds of balance sports together… skiing, rollerblading etc…
So it’s possible to ride a bicycle by the age of 2 and a half! Way to go, 宝贝! Skiing next!! I just have to figure out where and when…. :p
*Wu Hua ah! = worth it!