How To Ride A Bike As An Adult
There are many of us that did not get to learn how to ride a bike when we were kids but that does not mean that we cannot get a second chance at that as adults. You would be surprised that are many adults that did not learn this necessary skill, and it is never late to start!
Through this article and guide, we will guide you through all the necessary steps that will allow you to ride a bike flawlessly. There are some things that you need to be careful about tho, hear them well and strap them onto your heart because they will help you get through this training.
Patience is the key here, don’t feel like someone is forcing you to learn this, you want this! That is why you are here, trying to learn how to ride a bike. You will be tired and you will get frustrated a lot but you really shouldn’t give up. Improvise how you approach the situation and you will definitely come out victorious through this whole process.
Never ever give up! If you even think of giving up, then all the efforts that you made won’t account for much.
With that being said, let’s get started!
Prepare To Ride With The Best Gear
Before you start to learn to ride, you have to do some preparation and that includes getting the perfect bike for yourself and the necessary gear. There is no starting without it so make sure that you are well-equipped with them, after all, you can’t bike without a bike, can you?
You need to get a bike that perfectly fits you, these are the following types of bikes that you can go for:
You have to know that each bicycle is unique, so get the one that suits you the most!
Get A Comfortable-Sized Bike!
Well, these are the three options but you can get started with the training with either one of them. Consult the bike size chart on the different brand’s websites to look for the best comfortable bike and adjust to it.
The bike that you get for yourself should be comfortable to sit on with a wide enough seat, easy to steer and control. You should be able to plant your feet on the ground and still move a couple of inches above the seat to the frame!
Lear more about bike size:
If two wheels are less for you, you can get a trike, or a three-wheeled bike to practice.
Helmets Protect You And Are Necessary!
The next step is getting a pair of comfortable and sturdy helmets for yourself. Helmets and bicycles go like tea and sugar or petrol and car if you don’t like sugar with your tea but you get my point here.
Helmets make sure that you are protected when you are out there cycling and practicing with them reinforces your usage of them. Great helmets are not too tight and they protect your forehead like Batman protects Gotham!
Related: 12 Best Mountain Bike Helmets
Removing The Pedals And Using Your Legs
You might think that the next step is a bit complicated but in reality, it is not! In the next step, you have to remove the pedals and lower the seat but you have to do it accurately.
Sit on the bike’s seat comfortably and without any kind of hesitation. You might have a fear of falling off your bike, that is common and you will overcome it soon. Just remove the pedals from your bike and plant your feet on the ground. Balancing yourself properly will be the first step in building confidence.
The balance method is that you have to keep your other foot calm and steady!
Find A Suitable Area To Practice
You need to have a suitable and comfortable area where you can practice how to ride a bike. The area shouldn’t be crowded at all, find a place that is flat and large (Paved Surface), also most importantly an area that is quiet.
An empty parking lot with lots of space or a tennis court would fit you perfectly. Some people go for grassy areas but that is definitely not recommended as you don’t get to achieve the maximum speed nor will you be able to glide. Going to a park is not recommended, it might get trickier for you.
Teaching adults how to ride is fun, and these outdoor classes are going to be even more fun! Just continue to practice riding in that area, make sure that you have low stress or no stress at all! If you live in San Francisco then there are many great areas to hone your skills.
Practice Mounting and Dismounting Your Bike
As we discussed before, there is this one fear that adults have and that is falling from their bikes. That mainly occurs because of the lack of confidence they have but that can be easily cured. Practice getting on and off your bike frequently, you need to build that confidence inside yourself. The vast majority of people have problems here so better get better at it!
A really good piece of advice would be to stand on one side of the bike and lean it towards you, this will make things quite easier. Patience is the key here, no one has a gun to your head so you can take all the time you need, just build up that confidence inside yourself! You can even put your feet flat for relaxation! When you are ready, just begin pedaling.
Braking is A Must- Learn It Properly
You cannot learn to ride a bike without braking properly, these two actions go hand in hand. What you can do here is that you can get off your bike and try squeezing the hand brakes. This will give you an idea of how much pressure you have to exert in order to put the bike at a stop.
Some people make the mistake of pulling one hand brake at a time, that is wrong, you have to press both of them simultaneously. Move your bike around the practice area and then apply the handbrakes, do it as many times as you want, you need to get comfortable at this.
What you can do here next is get on your bike, move around and then apply the brakes, this will be considered the advanced level of practice and will help you get better.
Coasting Without Pedals Is The Next Step
Coasting without pedals is going to be the next step for you. Get on your bike carefully and take steps while seated on the bike, start with small and meaningful steps. When you have gotten comfortable with the small steps, take long steps, it should feel like you are running in that position. These running strides will help you in building your stamina and motivation. You need to make sure that you do this several times until you have become quite comfortable.
These running steps will allow you to build more speed and that is exactly what you need to do. Build that speed and try picking one foot up while you do so, this will give you a sense of balancing, and balancing while riding is a must. Start with smaller stretches with one foot up and then move on to longer stretches. This will only get easier and comfortable for you if you maintain a good amount of speed, the process isn’t effective when you are coasting at lower speeds.
What you have to do now is steer while coasting. When you are doing those long stretches with your bike, try turning the bike left and right, so abrupt movements as those are not recommended, start going left and right slowly. Moving around in an eight-figure shape would be recommended!
If we talk about the tips that come from professionals, they say that if you perform some actions while training, it makes the whole process a lot easier. The first thing that is recommended is always look up towards your destination, you don’t have to look left and right, just looking forward would do perfectly. This will give you a clear goal, where you actually need to go.
Do not stretch or move your body in any unwanted position, make sure that you are in an upright position. This will relax you while you are practicing, and comfort is something that you need to have while riding. If you think that you cannot coast any longer then it is recommended that you plant your feet on the ground for a while.
Time To Learn To Pedal
Now that you have practiced with everything else, it is time that you put the pedals back on. With the pedals back on the back, keep the seat at a lowered position. It would be wise if you don’t use the hand brakes immediately, you will need your both feet on the ground to stop.
How To Start Pedaling When You Have Stopped
You are nearing completion of your training and this is where things can get a little bit difficult for you. You need to start pedaling from a stopped position, there are many ways to do it and we will discuss them. Although if you have a geared bike for this training then it should be set to the lowest gear before we start.
The first step that you can take is to put one foot on the ground and one on the pedal and start pedaling from there. It is recommended that the foot that is on the pedal is curved towards the 1-o’clock position. Doing so will give the bike the necessary momentum to move forward.
You can try the scooter approach here too, your one foot should be on the ground, like in the downed position and one should be in the scoot position. Imagine that you are scooting but this time it is on a bike, gain some speed first and then mount the other pedal.
Lastly, what you can do here is use both feet on the pedals and start moving. Use both the pedals simultaneously and that is how you will pedal effectively.
Steer and Turn With The Pedals Back On
The final step is to steer and turn with the pedals back on. Practice those long stretches with pedals and when you feel comfortable start steering in directions. We recommend that you once again start pedaling, doing at an eight-figure on the ground. Start with small figures and glow slowly, once you are fully comfortable then move on to large figures.
Remember, this cannot be done instantly, it will definitely take time so it is recommended that you pedal slowly and comfortably, there is definitely no rush.
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Learning how to ride a bike is easy, the process is simple, you just have to ease into it. Many adults are ashamed that they don’t know how to ride a bike because seemingly, they weren’t taught when they were little, let me tell you this: There is no shame in that, there are many adults that don’t know how to ride.
You have to be comfortable with yourself and learn the steps comfortably and in your own time. Do this nice and slow and you will master bike riding in no time! We hope that this guide is useful and will make your training a whole lot easier!