Put The Fun Back in Fundamentals!
Every once in a while we get an email from a concerned parent saying, “We bought our son a STRIDER and he just isn’t interested” or “Our daughter will ride for a couple minutes, but she doesn’t seem to be getting it”.
There may be many reasons these questions arise, but the leading cause may simply be boredom. Below are a couple games you can play with your STRIDER rider that will be fun for them and also work on their STRIDER skills. Whether they are just beginning or have mastered balance these suggestions should help motivate your rider to get in the saddle!
1. Run Over My Foot – This is a great way to get the youngest STRIDER riders moving around and can be played anywhere. Keep moving your foot as they get close to running it over, but make sure you let them get you once in a while. Make it even more fun by rolling around on the floor in fake agony! The downside to this game is they may run over random feet when out for a ride…
2. Follow the leader – If you have a STRIDER group this is an easy way for everyone to have fun. Pick one rider as “the leader”. Encourage the leader to speed up, slow down, ride in circles, and weave around objects. Every couple of minutes yell out the name of the new leader. This is a favorite at my house when riding with my kids. As your STRIDER rider progesses add more advanced skills when you’re the leader: ride off a small curb, pop a wheelie, lead them in a figure eight, stand up, or encourage them to lift their feet up.
3. Chalk Lines – This is an especially good one for kids hesitant to fully trust their balance skills. Use sidewalk chalk to draw two lines. The goal is to have both feet off the ground from one line to the next. Start with the lines relatively close to each other. As their balance abilities increase draw the lines further apart. I’ve also used this game to work on more advanced striding skills like; Use of the Launchpad Footrests on the frame of the STRIDER while they are balancing and even standing on the footrests between lines.
4. Red Light, Green Light – In this game, you are the “stop light”. Stand about 15-20 feet away from your STRIDER rider(s). When you face away yell, “Green Light”. The kids can ride towards you until you yell, “Red Light” and turn around. The goal is for them to stop before you turn around. The first person to touch the “stop light” wins. The added benefit is that your rider will have it drilled into them to stop when you yell “Red Light” when they get too far ahead of you or you need them to stop!
Remember, the key to STRIDER success is fun! Get out on your bike with your kids…these games may rekindle your own love of 2 wheeled adventure as well! Stride On