As a mountain biker, sharing your love for the sport with others – especially your kids is always exciting. You want them to have the same amazing experiences you have had and enjoy the outdoors and physical activity as well.
It can be hard to get kids outdoors in a world full of video games and streaming platforms. Add the fear of difficult trails into the mix, and the entire process can seem nearly impossible. However, with a bit of patience and a few helpful strategies, you’ll have to try to keep the kids indoors! Read on for our top tips on how to get your kids involved in mountain biking.
Talk About How Much You Enjoy Biking
Spark their curiosity by talking to your children about some of the amazing trails you’ve ridden. Try and avoid talking about falls and injuries but talk about the wonderful scenes you’ve seen or a sense of achievement after conquering a particularly difficult bit. Talking to your kids about mountain biking will also help you gauge their interest levels.
Get Them Interested In Nature
All kids have a natural affinity to nature waiting to be sparked. Take your kids outdoors to enjoy the scenery. Go on short hikes, watch some birds, have a picnic – make being out in nature fun. Living in and around Ottawa, it’s easy enough to do.
Let Them Choose Their Own Bikes
There’s nothing more exciting than choosing your own gear! Get your kids their own mountain bikes and get them involved in choosing them. Picking up a kid’s bike that suits their size will help them feel comfortable right from the start and helps them learn proper techniques. Take them to a bike shop and let them sit on a few different bikes to see which one they feel the most comfortable on. While you may have budgetary constraints – letting them choose colours and graphics that get them excited can really help.
Start On Easy Trails
The last thing you want is for your kids to get discouraged. Ride around your neighbourhood or on flat easy trails. Use this time to increase their confidence in their biking skills, practice balance and stances, and practice using all the different features their bikes have. You can then move on to gentle slopes so they can practice braking at speed or use small rocks and logs to practice absorbing bumps and changing gears.
Encourage Their Efforts
It is easy to get worried when you’re concerned about your child’s safety. Instead of yelling at them to do something right, work through problems together. Demonstrate the correct techniques and praise them every time they get something right. Focusing on the positives instead of the negatives can make the entire experience a lot of fun for you as a family together.
Enrol Them Into Camps
Mountain biking with mum and dad is fun but getting outdoors with friends takes things to a completely new level of fun. Mountain bike camps are a fun-filled and exciting way for your kids to explore the great outdoors, hone their biking skills, and make new friends while they are at it. Seasoned instructors ensure your kids learn safe riding techniques, balance, ascending/descending, braking and bunny hopping – all skills that will help them progress in the sport.
Mountain Bike Kids – a part of the larger National Kids Camps – offer a safe way for your kids to learn the nuances of mountain biking and enjoy the outdoors.
As a company with 38 years of children’s camps under its belt, Mountain Bike Kids has been dedicated to inclusive, safe, and joyful fun for Canadian kids. The enthusiastic team takes pride in creating a fun environment for kids throughout the Ottawa and Gatineau area. Small batches mean your child gets the individual attention they need to succeed.