Scooters can be a fun and interactive toy for your kid, and are much easier to learn to get the hang of than a bicycle, which needs more balance skills. That means you should be able to teach your children to use a scooter much sooner than a standard bike. But that doesn’t mean they’re super-easy. Scooters still have a bit of a learning curve that makes them less than simple to get started with.
The good news is you’re in the right place if you want to learn how to teach your kid to ride a scooter. They’re much easier than bikes, and you should be able to get going reasonably easily. In this article, we’re going to look at a few tips so that you can teach your child to use a scooter so that they can start having fun.
Remember, a scooter isn’t just a toy but it’s also a vehicle. That means you need to be careful at all times. It’s the number one concern when teaching your kid to use anything, and especially a vehicle that they can stand on and goes fast. That means they can also fall off. Make sure your kid has a helmet and pads if necessary. This might not be required in some circumstances like when teaching initial balance if you’re holding on, but it’s still important.
Never leave your kid unsupervised when using a scooter until they’re much older and have full control of it. Don’t let them use it out in the road without adult supervision. Never use a scooter in a busy road or somewhere with a lot of traffic. Take all the precautions necessary, and use common sense.
Once you’ve got all the safety issues sorted, we can get started on how to teach your kid to use their first scooter.
Make sure you’ve followed the instructions that come with the scooter. Some scooters are designed for different aged kids. Some might have other precautions to be aware of. Check that your scooter is in good condition and has all the proper parts, and have been screwed together strongly.
Start with the basics
Before you try and scoot off anywhere, start teaching your kid the basics like how to stand on the scooter, hold the handlebars and use one foot to push off. You can do all this while holding on to give additional support. Make sure they understand the basics of how a scooter works and what you can and can’t achieve on one. Some scooters come with breaks, while others require you to just put your foot down, so make sure this is taught clearly and concisely.
You can start by showing your child how to use the scooter by you doing it first. Make sure the scooter is strong enough to support your weight as you don’t want to break it, then scoot around a little bit to show them what you’re supposed to do.
While most scooters are made for outside, it might be a good idea to start indoors while they get the hang of things. Carpets can protect falls much better than concrete can.
Take things easy
Don’t let your kid try too much too soon. Keep things steady and slow. While they probably want to start speeding around, you need to make sure they can steer and brake confidently before the get up to speed. You might feel like making them do something specific when they first get their hands on the scooter itself, but let them explore it as they see fit so they can understand this new item in their own way.
Balancing is one of the number one parts of using a scooter, so it’s important that your kid gets the hang of it. This might be the first moving thing they’ve tried to balance on like this, so it could take some trial and error. Balance is important, but it can’t be learned in an instant. They should get the hang of it soon enough. You can let them stand on the deck with both feet while you hold the handlebars, and see if they can stay on without falling off. From there, you can encourage them to use one foot to push off and see if they can switch between and maintain their balance.
Consider strapping your kid
If your kid is having trouble pocking up balancing (some will find it easier than others—it’s natural), you can consider the strap and pull method. Safely strap your kid’s feet to the deck and then pull them around yourself. This will help them get the hang of balancing correctly on the scooter while it moves, so they can shift their weight about and get the hang of things.
Once they’ve got the hang of balancing, you can move outdoors for more space and so they can get up to speed. Be careful, but allow them a bit more freedom as they’re improving.
Don’t let them get tired
A tired kid will get frustrated and won’t learn as much. This could also lead to more falls. So try smaller training windows until they’ve got the hang of things and you can build up time on the scooter.
Don’t let falls stop you
Your kid will probably fall off the scooter at some point. This might be a shock, and it could be painful. Make sure they’re ok, then make sure they get back on the scooter quickly rather than give up. Brush little falls off and carry on learning rather than letting them put the kid off for good.
Hopefully, these simple steps will get you heading (or scooting) in the right direction. Now your kid can start enjoying their scooter and you can sit back and relax.