Live Better

A balancing act: Teaching kids to ride

Realize why you should teach your children to ride a bike, and how it can benefit them in the future.

Cadel Evans teaching kids to ride bikes

When it comes to teaching a child how to ride a bike, cycling legend and Medibank ambassador Cadel Evans says the best way is to ride together as a family.

“Getting on your bikes as a family not only teaches kids how to ride, it sets a good example, putting them on the path towards a healthy lifestyle,” he says.

This is a belief that Sydney father Clayton Reed wholeheartedly agrees with. With his two-and-half-year-old-son Chase now happily riding a balance bike on a regular basis, we spoke to Clayton to find out how he went about teaching his little one to ride.

Why did you decide to teach your son to ride a bike?

Like a lot of small children, Chase always seemed to have a natural interest in bikes. I’m a regular cyclist and whenever I would bring my bike out at home, Chase would want to play with the pedals or steer the handlebars.

Whenever we went to the park, Chase was fascinated by the other children on bikes. He’d run along, trying to keep up with them. We wanted to encourage this interest, so we decided it was time to get him a bike of his own.

What did you look for when choosing a bike?

We bought a wooden balance bike with rubber inflatable wheels. I’d heard that balance bikes were easier for children to learn on, so it seemed like the best option to get Chase riding at a young age.

We wanted something that was lightweight, so he would be able to use it easily. We also wanted something compact so we could fit it into the back of the car. A wooden balance bike was the perfect choice.

The model we chose was the right height for Chase and it had smooth edges and rubber handles so we knew it would be safe for him to ride.

“He loves being able to copy Mum and Dad, so he is always excited when we ride our bikes as a family.”

How are you teaching Chase to ride? 

We live in an apartment, but we do have a large grassed area right outside. When we first got the balance bike, we’d take Chase down there and encourage him to ride back and forth.

At first we had to help him get on the bike, showing him how to hold on and push it forward. It took a few goes but now he never stops moving. In fact, he will often just ride his balance bike around the house, making circles through the kitchen and living room.

Do you ever ride together as a family?

Yes, on the weekends Chase, my wife and I take our bikes to the Botanical Gardens. Chase loves being able to copy Mum and Dad, so he is always excited when we ride our bikes as a family. Riding together has definitely played an important role in keeping him interested in learning to ride a bike.

What benefits are you seeing from teaching Chase to ride a bike? 

His balance has definitely improved and it keeps him active. He can easily zoom along and he’s getting more and more confident. He now even rides down small hills!

But the best thing is that when he’s riding his bike, he’s happy and smiling. He particularly enjoys bringing his balance bike when we visit his two older cousins. When they’re together, they’ll happily spend half the day racing around the backyard on their bikes.

Do you hope Chase continues riding as he gets older?

Absolutely. My father got me into bike riding and whenever I go back home to visit, we will always go for a long ride together up in the Perth hills. It’s great to have fun and it’s a challenging form of exercise that we can do together. I would love to ride more with Chase in the future, and I can picture all three of us riding those Perth hills together in a few years’ time.

Keep reading about the benefits of bike riding for kids and what you need to know.

Latest Articles


Playgrounds for all abilities

It’s a new era of children’s playgrounds. Read more


Easy (and free) exercise ideas for any space

Get creative and make the most of the spaces around you. Read more


Beginner bedtime yoga routine

This simple yoga sequence will help you unwind. Read more


Should you run during pregnancy?

Largest ever study on running in pregnancy. Read more


The best reasons to exercise outside

Sports scientist Luke Ashcroft explains the top benefits. Read more


Set your kids up to play sport safely

Tips to prevent your kids getting hurt. Read more


Fuel for active kids

Find out more about nutrition and exercise for young people. Read more

youtubeui-checkbox-tickui-checkbox-emptyui-checkbox-crosstwitterui-checkbox-tickPage 1Group 10Group 9Group 2sign-up-userArtboard CopyArtboard Copy 15Artboard Copy 3Artboard Copy 4Artboard Copy 8Artboard Copy 17Artboard Copy 9Group CopyArtboard Copy 6Artboard Copy 7Artboard Copy 18Artboard Copy 10Artboard Copy 2Artboard CopyArtboard Copy 5Page 1Artboard Copy 12Artboard Copy 16ArtboardArtboard Copy 13Artboard Copy 14Artboard Copy 11np_phone_503983_000000download_red4xdownload_red4x copyArtboardmember-offer-starLogoMedibank - Logo - ColourOval 5lemon-speechInstagram iconicon-editdownload_red4x copygive-back--spinesgive-back--moneygive-back--massagegive-back--likegive-back--jointgive-back--emailgive-back--dislikedownload_red4xdownload_red4xGroup 5filter-iconfacebookShape Copy 2Mobile Navcheckcarret-upcarret-rightcarret-leftcarret-downGroup Copy 2Group 17arrowarrow-circleanimated-tick