One of the few things that Mike has not yet been able to master is riding a 2-wheeled bike. He has been understandably derailed, more often than not, by his fear of falling and scraping his hands and knees. He has ridden behind me on a tandem trike (just like a tandem bike that attaches to my mountain bike, but with 2 wheels on his end instead of 1) many times. We had asked his school to help him with this but they only got as far as him riding an adult trike (the famous ‘blue bike’), which he enjoyed, and rode at every opportunity during gym class. I managed to find him his own ‘blue bike’ in decent condition from a Craigslist posting about 2 years ago, but now it’s time to tackle that 2-wheeler.
Today Mike is starting at Lose The Training Wheels camp; a week-long camp for children with disabilities with the goal of mastering, to some degree, riding a 2-wheeler. Along with learning how to build their confidence, they want to instill a sense of fun, which is what bike riding is all about; instead of mastering an academic or domestic skill, they want riders like Mike to want to hop on a bike and spend some time with family and friends. He will also learn about helmet safety and little things like using the bike stand, which can be tough for special needs kids at times. I wish we knew about this years ago!
I’m psyched about this possibility and I wish I could be there to see him succeed; but I’m sure my wife will send me pics and videos while I’m at work. My only trepidation is that I hope the bike I picked out for him is a good one; I got him a 26″ Schwinn Hurricane single speed cruiser bike in black and red, but I wonder if a 24″ would have been a better choice. He fits on both, but projecting forward, he will outgrow the 24″ very, very soon and don’t want it to be obsolete.
His brother Nick will be on hand for part of the camp to be his ‘spotter’ so hopefully Mike will have a successful week, and we see more pictures like these. I can’t wait for him to say, “Look Dad, no training wheels!”