Image Source: bmorebikes.com
Kids are resilient, but when it comes to extreme sports, you have to prepare them, though they lack zero excitement and courage. Mountain biking is exhilarating and offers plenty of exercise, but not all kids are born to ride; rather, you must prepare them using the following tips.
Depending on the age of your child, prepare them physically, going on jogs, bike rides, and engaging in other activities that build cardiovascular tenacity. Mountain biking is not like taking a leisure cruise through the neighborhood to a friend’s house; it’s an ‘extreme’ sport, necessitating conditioning, strengthening, and much practice.
Kids are courageous, sometimes to a fault. So, address the levity of partaking in a sport like mountain biking. Those who have done it for years are just as prone to injury, but not as likely as those just starting to ride.
If your child is presently athletically inclined, excelling at soccer, baseball, or even a sport related to mountain biking, like BMX riding, remind them it’s not the same. Mountain biking requires its own skill sets and ongoing experience. Teach your kids to ride humble, and not to overestimate their skills and ability to control a biking moving at high speeds downhill.
The Right Stuff
As mentioned, BMX-ing is similar to mountain biking yet a separate sport that requires different equipment. You could ride downhill with a BMX bike, but it’s not recommended and could lead to serious injury. Get your child the right equipment, visiting local vendors and online bike shops that offer suggestions, measurements, and information from professionals.
You may save money, ultimately purchasing a bike online, yet visit stores to ensure a good fit for your child. If price is an issue, target a product with a good frame and skimp on the ‘extras.’ You can always upgrade as your child’s interest and experience grows.
Do ski instructors take beginners on the most advanced mountains slopes? No, ‘bunny slopes’ are reserved for beginners, so young skiers get used to wearing and using equipment, and adjust to appropriate form and movement.
Use online resources to find mountain biking courses in your area and target ‘beginner’ rides until you think your child is experienced enough to tackle tougher rides.
Grass to Rock
If a child has never been ‘off roading,’ the different terrain may throw them for a loop. Have them start riding on the lawn or areas with heavy grass to acclimate them to a rougher surface. Also, use a vacant lot, setting up cones, so they can swerve in and out of tough spots, getting used to the bike and making sharp turns.
Find a family of steps, starting small (one or two steps), and then have your child graduate to an outdoor staircase, emulating the rough, bumpy mountain courses. Of course, they should always be wearing a helmet as well as protective knee and elbow pads. Some moms and dads, investing thousands in dentistry, also buy mouth guards for added protection.
Guest Blogger: Tiffany Hanrahan has a deep passion for her family to be outdoors. With experience and great ideas, she loves blogging about how she gets her children active outside in a variety of activities like hiking, camping, boating, and more.