Tuesday, April 14, 2015

"Look Mum, No Training Wheels!!!"

22nd March was one of the proudest moments of my life... Aiden finally figured out how to cycle without his training wheels!

Hubby took out both of Aiden's training wheels on the 8th - I remembered the date perfectly because it was my maid's day off hence I had to take care of a sleeping Ian inside the house while Hubby taught Aiden how to cycle with two wheels. Poor Hubby had a sore back that night, since he had to constantly bend his body down to hold the bicycle steady while Aiden attempted to balance and pedal. And Aiden isn't exactly the most patient boy in the world... he was extremely frustrated that he couldn't master it by the end of that afternoon.

In the next following few days, I took over Hubby's role - practicing with Aiden in the afternoons after work. Aiden finally figured out how to balance, but he just couldn't seem to get be able to balance and pedal for more than one or two cycles. Also, I am not exactly the most patient person in the world either, so Aiden and I got no where much that week.

On 17th March, Hubby came home with an idea. Since it was so hard for Aiden to get the momentum to pedal on flat surface, why not get him to launch his bicycle down our elevated porch, then use the momentum gained to pedal a considerable distance away? So that night, we all gathered outside the house to attempt Hubby's experiment. And... it worked! Here's the video as proof:

Aiden was soooo excited with his achievement that night. He was able to cycle significantly further than his past tries, and the best part - he didn't even need our help to balance the bike! It gave him so much motivation and soon he was practicing his skills every afternoon. 

The weekend arrived, and on 22nd March (the day), we decided to venture Aiden out of his comfort zone. We told him to cycle to the end of the road using whatever momentum he could get from launching his bike from the porch. Every time his legs faltered, he had to dismount his bike and push it back to the house. After a few tries, he finally figured out how much force to put into the pedal and actually managed cycle to the end of the road. We were ecstatic! 

Then we taught him how to make a big loop (u-turn) to cycle back to our home. Since there was a slight uphill just before our house, the first few tries he had to dismount his bicycle and push it up. I told him to pedal faster and use his "strong legs" to force his bike up, and after a while, he managed to do that too! Oh my, so many milestones in a day!

Next, the biggest challenge of all. Trying to cycle from a complete stop on a flat road. We were hoping that with all the afternoon practice sessions he was making during the past week, he would finally figure it out for himself. I mean, he can't depend entirely on a downhill thrust to cycle himself around the neighbourhood, right? Well guess what, after a few nervous tries, he actually did it! I was sooooo proud of him, I think I actually jumped up and down in elation for my boy!

So to reward him, we brought him out of our street and to the main road. We even went all the way to the clubhouse!!! Sure, there were a few times when we had to stop and help him (especially when going on grass patches, tight spaces or crossing the road), but overall he did very well for his first try. Whenever we met anyone on our ride, he would point to his bicycle and exclaim "two wheels!', to show off his new found skills. Yes baby, Mummy and Daddy are super super super proud of you, Aiden!

To celebrate Aiden's new milestone, I received a present of my own too. Guess what arrived on my doorstep last week!

Remember what I said about being scared of heights? Well this is a folding bike that had a low step so my feet are close to the ground.

Lower center of gravity means improved stability too!

And a matching safety helmet!

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