Bike Riding Information Sheet

The following strategy may help if your child is having difficulty learning how to ride their bike

Strategies for Learning to Ride a Bicycle

The following strategy may help if your child is having difficulty learning how to ride their bike. The following technique takes time, but the idea is that your child gets a sense of achievement from mastering each step one at a time. 

General Advice

  • Always follow general bike safety rules when teaching your child how to ride e.g. practising in a quiet area, wearing a helmet, bike reflectors etc.
  • Ensure your child has totally mastered one step before moving onto the next.
  • Grass is not good as it is too soft and makes pushing harder.
  • Getting good cycling weather will impact on how long it takes your child to learn to ride!
  • Take time to help the child practice and reinforce the skills. 

You will need:  

  • A bike
  • A helmet
  • A shifting spanner

1.   Lower the seat so the child can sit comfortably with both feet flat on the ground.

2.   Remove both pedals.

3.   Using a flat surface in a safe area e.g. a playground or quiet car park, get your child to propel themselves forward using a walking movement with their feet.

4.   Tell them to keep their arms fairly rigid and to look where they are going.

5.   When your child has mastered steps 3 and 4, get them to propel themselves forward using both feet at the same time (whooshing along like a skier!)

6.   When the child is competent, practice on a safe hill or a slope in a park.  As they achieve, gradually increase the distance the child goes down the slope.  Encourage them to rest their feet on the frame of the bike.

7.   Get your child to practice stopping the bike by braking and putting their feet down at the same time.

8.   When the child is freewheeling down the slope and stopping in a controlled manner, put the pedals back on.

9.   Repeat steps 6 and 7, with the child resting their feet on the pedals this time.

10.  Introduce the pedalling action.  If the child has difficulty with moving one foot then the other (reciprocal movement), try taking the pedals off and repeat step 5, but moving one foot then the other rather than both together.

It is also helpful to note groups run in your local community which can support you to achieve independent bike riding with your child:  


Community Resources 

The Bike Station 

The Bike Station provides the opportunity for children and young people to learn bike riding skills from a basic to an advanced level. The Bike Station also has on hand staff who can provide advice as to what bike is most suitable for your child. The bike station runs a selection of coaching opportunities both delivered individually and in a small group setting.  

The Bike Station is open during the following times:

Monday        Shop Closed (open for donations only)
Tuesday       9.00am - 5.00pm
Wednesday  9.00am - 8.00pm
Thursday     9.00am - 5.00pm
Friday          9.00am - 5.00pm
Saturday      9.00am - 5.00pm
Sunday        Shop Closed 

65 Haugh Road
G3 8TX  
Individual Lessons £25/hr (£15 concession, free for students, block of 3 for £60) - completely catered for your individual ability. Individual lessons are available for children and adults and are a great way to learn how to ride or build up your confidence. 


Free Wheel North 

Free Wheel North is a charity funded organisation based on Glasgow Green.   

The site has a wide and varied selection of bikes, go-carts, family bikes, specially adapted bikes, disability bikes, hand cranks, trikes, tandems and side by sides.  The organisation can offer advice on the most appropriate bike for your child and specialises itself in teaching children and young people how to ride a bike.

Free Wheel North is open during the following times:

Monday         10.00am - 5.00pm
Tuesday        10.00am - 5.00pm
Wednesday  10.00am - 5.00pm
Thursday      10.00am - 5.00pm
Friday           10.00am - 5.00pm
Saturday      Shop Closed
Sunday        12.00pm - 5.00pm 

Glasgow Green Cycle Centre
Templeton Street
Glasgow City Centre
G40 1AT

It is only £1 per shot with no time limits, safety rules must be followed and a member of the team is on site to help at all times. 

Available for all ages, open all year round, not open on Saturdays.


  • General Advice
  • Local Community Resources