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  1. #1
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    Introducing Kids to the Sport???

    I have 2 Sons (7 and 12).

    They are athletic.

    They have been raised with a cyclist.

    Our garage has a dozen "nice" bikes - including a "nice" BMX and MTB for each boy.

    Everything seems in place.

    However, getting the kids more involved about cycling is not quite so easy.

    My oldest wanted to do the P2A with me this year. Then the HCC visited his class and tested their prowess on stationary bikes. He claims his was too small and his times weren't up to his classmates. Now he says he won't be prepared.

    Also, he has a "nice" bike, however, mine is really farkin' nice! SHould I feel bad my bike is 7x as expensive as his? I will jettison his stock wheels and tires for lighter stuff I have, but he still won't have a weight weenie.

    I raised hockey players. Together the 2 of them could fight Chuck Norris. But I don't know what to pick for a "first step" for competitive cycling? Cycling is my sanctuary from stress, but part of me says I should give it up to get them more into it?

    Anyone have a game plan for developing youth mtbers? is the P2A too big of a first step?

    Advice appreciated...
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

  2. #2
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    Your kids are probably worried that Ovechkin will beat them at the P2A...

    Seriously, take 'em to Joyride - they will see other kids bombing around and will want to do likewise. That's a good start. Then maybe make their first race a low-key weekly race series - Kelso is likely the closest to The Hammer. An O-Cup kids race is also a good way to go. IMHO the P2A (even the 40k distance) is likely a bit intimidating, especially for the 7 year old, for a first race ever.
    Strava made me do it....

  3. #3
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    Just for correctness, it wouldn't have been the HCC (Hamilton Cycling Club), but rather the NCCH (Team CHCH/National Cycling Centre). I'm sure he's laying down enough watts to keep up with the likes of me

    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    I have 2 Sons (7 and 12).

    They are athletic.

    They have been raised with a cyclist.

    Our garage has a dozen "nice" bikes - including a "nice" BMX and MTB for each boy.

    Everything seems in place.

    However, getting the kids more involved about cycling is not quite so easy.

    My oldest wanted to do the P2A with me this year. Then the HCC visited his class and tested their prowess on stationary bikes. He claims his was too small and his times weren't up to his classmates. Now he says he won't be prepared.

    Also, he has a "nice" bike, however, mine is really farkin' nice! SHould I feel bad my bike is 7x as expensive as his? I will jettison his stock wheels and tires for lighter stuff I have, but he still won't have a weight weenie.

    I raised hockey players. Together the 2 of them could fight Chuck Norris. But I don't know what to pick for a "first step" for competitive cycling? Cycling is my sanctuary from stress, but part of me says I should give it up to get them more into it?

    Anyone have a game plan for developing youth mtbers? is the P2A too big of a first step?

    Advice appreciated...

  4. #4
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    Captain, you are correct, I remember seeing the trailer in their parking lot.

    Unglued, that was my newest plan, the 40k. I think that may be the route I'll take, especially since the distances have been upped. The 7 year-old has a Giant 20" ride, but I'm not planning races for him...he's still a work in progress. I had my worst expereience ever on a bike at Kelso and am not sure I can go back there, let alone bring my kids to that carnage!

    Joyride questions, will they need armour? What bikes, BMX or MTB?
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

  5. #5
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    40k is daunting for a 12yr old. On our youth rides it’s tough to cover 25k unless they are very experienced.
    Consider an OCup race for that age is only 6km.

    Unglued offers great advice. Start them out with a local series and in the local club. And hit up Joyride. No armor (except helmet) and any bike you have.

    As far as riding less yourself, I assume as a parent you have to make sacrifices. But something tells me being out with the kids and enjoying themselves will be an equal stress reliever.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    I had my worst expereience ever on a bike at Kelso and am not sure I can go back there, let alone bring my kids to that carnage!
    Kelso has many trails, several of which are perfect for kids. I took my two daughters, aged 5 and 3 at the time, on a bunch of the trails on the eastern end of Kelso, and we had a blast. Originally, we had intended to try out the open house at the Milton BMX track. Upon arrival, for various reasons, we decided that BMX racing was not for us. So we regrouped and headed off to Kelso - the 5 year old on her Intense micro BMX, the 3 year old on her (princess) run bike, and me on my BMX cruiser. We had a blast - both girls loved riding the trails. And, as long as we stayed on the trails on the eastern side, there was nothing to confound them. (We did try riding Xtreme trail, which just resulted in me carrying an Intense micro BMX, a princess run bike, and a BMX cruiser over all the logs - bad idea.)

    My long-winded point is this: just go ride with them. Leave the 40k races for later. If they like riding and racing, those will come naturally.

    And Joyride is a brilliant place for kids to learn riding. As was stated, you only need a helmet and whatever bike. I've seen kids on department store bikes having just as much fun there as kids on the lastest bling-bling.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    I have 2 Sons (7 and 12).

    They are athletic.

    They have been raised with a cyclist.

    Our garage has a dozen "nice" bikes - including a "nice" BMX and MTB for each boy.

    Everything seems in place.

    However, getting the kids more involved about cycling is not quite so easy.

    My oldest wanted to do the P2A with me this year. Then the HCC visited his class and tested their prowess on stationary bikes. He claims his was too small and his times weren't up to his classmates. Now he says he won't be prepared.

    Also, he has a "nice" bike, however, mine is really farkin' nice! SHould I feel bad my bike is 7x as expensive as his? I will jettison his stock wheels and tires for lighter stuff I have, but he still won't have a weight weenie.

    I raised hockey players. Together the 2 of them could fight Chuck Norris. But I don't know what to pick for a "first step" for competitive cycling? Cycling is my sanctuary from stress, but part of me says I should give it up to get them more into it?

    Anyone have a game plan for developing youth mtbers? is the P2A too big of a first step?

    Advice appreciated...
    tough call Biggie - kids will eventually pick what they like - but they have to do it themselves... imagine my anxiety when i realized that my son was not biting into MTB, and i got him a nice bike, riding gear etc... i did not force him into anything, did not set any expectations... just did my best to expose him to the sport of MTB, as well as basketball, volleyball, track and field, soccer, tennis, golf..... so far the only sport that is sticking is - golf. the only "sport" that i do not do. my wife does however, so they are doing it together... if planets align properly, maybe this is better investment than RRSP - we will see....

    i guess my point is - expose them to everything and see what "sticks". if they do not accept the sport, any sport, there is not much we can do about it... some motivational conversations are helpful as well. your 12yo is a typical kid of his age... my son is 11 and his comments are eerily similar to your sons'.

    just have fun with them, no matter which sport you participate together in, including biking... no sense in building weight weenie bike for him, until he really bites...
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  8. #8
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    I don't have kids, but I have a buddy with a 13 year old daughter that is super athletic. She is an awesome hockey and soccer player and plays both competitively. She likes to ride around just fine, but could care less about ripping it up either on the road or trails. She has had to opportunity to ride some fine bikes too. Just not interested. He let just let it go. If your kid is not into biking that much, putting him into a competitive situation may just do more harm than good. If he is not into it, dropping a ton of dough on a bike is probably not the answer; unless of course it's something you could use too if things don't work out.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by secret agent View Post
    If he is not into it, dropping a ton of dough on a bike is probably not the answer; unless of course it's something you could use too if things don't work out.
    You've provided me with an alibi to buy a bike??? I love it.
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    You've provided me with an alibi to buy a bike??? I love it.
    not that you really needed one...
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  11. #11
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    All good points. Oggie brings up a huge point. Exposé your kids to many sports don't focus on just one. Keep in mind we parents want our kids to do sports we like. In some cases live vicariously through them to make up for us coming up short in our own attempts. Worked wonderfully for my dad who tried that with golf. All it did was make me hate it.

    Don't worry about racing. Give them them the love of riding. There is plenty of time after they are 18 to go try racing. When I started at 12 rides where more about skill development. See how high up the hill you got, try to get over that log, and so on.

  12. #12
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    Kids will follow the lead their parents offer, sounds like the OP has his heart,in the right place. I'd let them come to you about the idea of racing. If you push that idea too hard, and those kids might feel like they're letting you down and feel "pressured".

    I'm just glad my kids enjoy heir bikes, it's the first real feeling of freedom that you have as a child, you're in control of everything for the first time....

  13. #13
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    +1 for Joyride in the winter.

    Though we're not quite at the same stage as you are with your kids, we're starting early and taking it easy. We've been to Joyride about a half dozen times since the beginning of the year with only very modest goals. Foremost was getting the boy to stop trying to rip his helmet off the minute we got it on his head (Success! ).

    I'd say the boy's only on his bike for 20% of the time he's there but he's getting more comfortable, confident and skilled with every visit. There are always a ton of kids there on the weekend and exposing him to that example seems to be paying off nicely.

    We don't plan to get him "into" racing but with time, we hope to return to racing ourselves and if he wants in, we'll be glad to get him started. Time will tell...

    Introducing Kids to the Sport???-dscf1317.jpg
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  14. #14
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    I got into mountain biking pretty seriously when I was about 10 or 11 years old, but that was back when there was also the Giant 5 series and Bike NXS has kids enduro races as well bit of a different atmosphere from an o-cup. Those races were in the range of 8-14 km. I almost always remember getting a draw prize at each race and a t-shirt that was included in the entry fee from each race. I thought it was the coolest thing ever to be able to wear a race shirt to school when I was in the 6th grade. I think a big factor at that age was I had friends that were also into the sport.
    Last edited by Nrs1Rider; 02-06-2013 at 05:36 PM.

  15. #15
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    Also expose kids to all the other disciplines of cycling. Just because you like XC one's kid may be more attracted to DH or trials. Look at Ned Overend's son, dad is all XC whil the on is all DH.

  16. #16
    Evil Jr.
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    This thread inspired me to spend some time wrenching on the boy's bike. Check out this most excellent Syncros BCBR saddle hack (big improvement over the stock saddle and it doubles as a fender)!

    Introducing Kids to the Sport???-dscf1345.jpg
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  17. #17
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    Take them to Joyride or take them to Blue and ride Downhill.

    When I was a kid the last thing I wanted to do was put on spandex and race, although I do that now.

    Take them where the fun / badass stuff is and they will eventually grow into road/xc.

    Kids don't want to tell their friends they raced 40km and nearly died from exhaustion, they want to say they hit sweet jumps and had fun bombing downhill.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by broadwayline View Post
    Kids don't want to tell their friends they raced 40km and nearly died from exhaustion, they want to say they hit sweet jumps and had fun bombing downhill.
    No... I still do this.

    Daughter has a run bike much like Monsters, minus the sweet saddle. She rides it when I'm on the trainer so she can be like daddy. On the otherhand, you put her in the bike trailer, and she loves every second of that too.

    I hope that she takes to it in the future.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by garage monster View Post
    Check out this most excellent Syncros BCBR saddle hack (big improvement over the stock saddle and it doubles as a fender)!
    The Norco Air is a sweet run bike, but it's not low enough for real little ones. I started my daughter on a Strider (POS, but lowest saddle height I could find) and got her the Air as soon as her legs were long enough.

    I've got a 12" CCM on the trainer right now. My daughter will spin on it for a couple minutes now and then when I'm downstairs working on something

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by nickboers View Post
    The Norco Air is a sweet run bike, but it's not low enough for real little ones. I started my daughter on a Strider (POS, but lowest saddle height I could find) and got her the Air as soon as her legs were long enough.
    The test run was a great success! The problem with the stock saddle was that it was WAY too high. I dismantled and flipped the clamp and got it as low as possible. Mrs. Monster's old saddle was the thinnest one in the parts bin and now the stand-over height is just right. Look out Joyride!
    Please enjoy seeing this terrible collection of me - something wonderful is about to happy.

  21. #21
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    we need more programs like this for all communities...

    CCA CAN-BIKE Program: Kids CAN-BIKE Camp
    broadcasting from
    "the vinyl basement"

    build trail!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    we need more programs like this for all communities...

    CCA CAN-BIKE Program: Kids CAN-BIKE Camp
    Staying on the point of thread, which is getting you kid involved in mountain biking. This program by Doug Detwiller fits what everyone else here hs been discussing.

    Sprockids

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enduramil View Post
    Staying on the point of thread, which is getting you kid involved in mountain biking. This program by Doug Detwiller fits what everyone else here hs been discussing.

    Sprockids
    sprockids is putting the chicken before the egg... while a good program the bigger issue is just getting kids on bikes and making accessible cycling part of the lifestyle/recreation of communities.

    the infrastructure has to be there, the rest will follow... perfect example is when they built the skate park in bolton. i went to the meetings advocating that some accommodation be made be made for bmxers. the response from the skaters was predictable. fast forward to now, the park is crowded mainly with kids on bmx bikes (parents nowhere to be found lol).

    i think the best thing you can do for your prodigy is to advocate for cycling (bmx, dirts jumps, skills parks, etc) for your community with in walking/cycling/public transport distance... and then take them there to session.
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  24. #24
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    [QUOTE=singlesprocket;

    i think the best thing you can do for your prodigy is to advocate for cycling (bmx, dirts jumps, skills parks, etc) for your community with in walking/cycling/public transport distance... and then take them there to session.[/QUOTE]

    You mean progeny, right?

    Biggie, there is a bike park in Burlington, in Shell Park just off the Lakeshore near the bottom of Burloak. That might be a good place to take your kids and a little closer than Joyride...
    Strava made me do it....

  25. #25
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    I did not know about the bike park in Burlington - much closer too!

    I got rid of my minivan and replaced it with a VW. However, I haven't had a hitch installed yet for a bike rack. Cycling will probably be on hold until OMHA and Tri_County playoffs have concluded.

    But I love the idea. I think ramping up the family's saddle hours this summer will be in order. Fortunately, several of my friends have bought decent bikes for their kids as well, so hopefully friends and family will enjoy cycling together. Joyride will be a destination for sure...
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    sprockids is putting the chicken before the egg... while a good program the bigger issue is just getting kids on bikes and making accessible cycling part of the lifestyle/recreation of communities.

    the infrastructure has to be there, the rest will follow... perfect example is when they built the skate park in bolton. i went to the meetings advocating that some accommodation be made be made for bmxers. the response from the skaters was predictable. fast forward to now, the park is crowded mainly with kids on bmx bikes (parents nowhere to be found lol).

    i think the best thing you can do for your prodigy is to advocate for cycling (bmx, dirts jumps, skills parks, etc) for your community with in walking/cycling/public transport distance... and then take them there to session.
    Ah, because building infrastructure is the only solution to this and reject all other options. Because if there is no skills park kids won't ride bikes. Ah, the skills park the cycling verson of basketball programs for youth. Now it's a stereotype. Build a skills park and all problems for youth cycling are solved. Gee where have I heard this institutional like mindset before?

    Sorry this mindset of your is the problem. While skills parks are helpful they are not the solution. Not all kids will want to ride at the kills park or want that only. Just like not all kids want basketball or want to do it all the time.

    More energy needs to be directed at what Oggie, Unglued, and others are doing. What got me into riding in 86. Simply take them out riding on trails. Reality is cycling is pretty accessible for any kid. The problems presented by parents who are poor is about priorities. When you feel it is better to spend $300 plus on a Xbox then a bike. It's hard to follow that logic. I know four kids from poor parents who ride because of their single parent made that choice.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post

    I got rid of my minivan and replaced it with a VW. However, I haven't had a hitch installed yet for a bike rack. .
    Friendly heads up. With a hitch mount on the VW you have be aware of ground clearance. I just noticed ours is bent.

  28. #28
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    -cycling infrastructure is just like basketball programs for youth?

    -promoting cycling infrastructure is a stereotypical institutional like mindset?

    lol you and rob ford should get together... you have the same provincial mindset.

    successful sustainable communities are defined by their infrastructure

    good points made in both of these reports

    http://www.mlseteamupfoundation.org/...port_jul07.pdf

    http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/28313/1/CASEreport23.pdf

    the reality is recreation infrastructure is thankfully going in the direction i've touched upon because of accessibility, cost, proven success of sustainabilty. though it has a long way to go.

    it's time to move beyond the status quo...



    Quote Originally Posted by Enduramil View Post
    Ah, because building infrastructure is the only solution to this and reject all other options. Because if there is no skills park kids won't ride bikes. Ah, the skills park the cycling verson of basketball programs for youth. Now it's a stereotype. Build a skills park and all problems for youth cycling are solved. Gee where have I heard this institutional like mindset before?

    Sorry this mindset of your is the problem. While skills parks are helpful they are not the solution. Not all kids will want to ride at the kills park or want that only. Just like not all kids want basketball or want to do it all the time.

    More energy needs to be directed at what Oggie, Unglued, and others are doing. What got me into riding in 86. Simply take them out riding on trails. Reality is cycling is pretty accessible for any kid. The problems presented by parents who are poor is about priorities. When you feel it is better to spend $300 plus on a Xbox then a bike. It's hard to follow that logic. I know four kids from poor parents who ride because of their single parent made that choice.
    broadcasting from
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    -cycling infrastructure is just like basketball programs for youth?

    -promoting cycling infrastructure is a stereotypical institutional like mindset?

    Nice spin doctoring what I said.

    But since your ignorance of these programs I speak of I'll say it simply. For some reason people have latched onto the whole basketball programs is the best thing for youth bandwagon. The city has jumped all over it and is their solution for everything. I see this whole bike skills park as the next version of it. Problem is this becomes dangerous as everything becomes focused on this as a solution like a bike skills park. Everything else gets ignored other then this.

    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post

    lol you and rob ford should get together... you have the same provincial mindset..
    Ah, weak sauce insult against someone who thinks differently. Excellent work and exactly what I expected. Hmm.. I said by the way nothing that cycling infrastructure is useless. I only focused on the bike skills park. But you twisted it into something else.

    Now instead of doing one handed push ups in quick sand while using a cheese grater erotically. I will send some time helping my daughter work on her bike.
    Last edited by Enduramil; 02-09-2013 at 03:59 PM.

  30. #30
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    Chris: All the trails and infrastructure in the world won't help without some support and encouragement from family and friends.

    Chris: Support and encouragement from family and friends for MTB only goes so far without trails and infrastructure to ride.

    You're both right about that you're supporting is important, but you should realize that what Chris is supporting is important too.

  31. #31
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    My son is about to turn 12, and is stoked about starting his second year in the kelso weekly race series. He just started out riding with me starting on paths, then mild trails off the path, then kelso trail rides, then waterdown. After a couple years of riding trails, |I asked him if he wanted to try racing. I was careful to keep it fun and kept encouraging him. I learned the hard way pushing him too hard in soccer and baseball until he hated both. I also found that having him watch downhill/freeride videos (without crash scenes. haha) helped.
    Best of luck

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by nickboers View Post
    Chris: All the trails and infrastructure in the world won't help without some support and encouragement from family and friends.

    Chris: Support and encouragement from family and friends for MTB only goes so far without trails and infrastructure to ride.

    You're both right about that you're supporting is important, but you should realize that what Chris is supporting is important too.
    I'm so confused. Touché Nick.

    Chris: Please keep your posts on the topic, not the person.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Circlip View Post
    I'm so confused. Touché Nick.

    Chris: Please keep your posts on the topic, not the person.
    hey, i didn't start the personal attacks, look at my first post.

    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    we need more programs like this for all communities...

    CCA CAN-BIKE Program: Kids CAN-BIKE Camp
    and the post that follows as well as the edited one...
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  34. #34
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    First off Biggie, why would a 12 year old kid want to ride 40k, with all due respect, why would you expect him to be interested in that, i cant get my head around it..

    Kids like to have FUN, Myself and my mates would have rather been just mucking around on the BMX, just razzing around, a 40k ride would have turned me off biking for life at that age.

    Yes im sure theres a handful of kids that might like it at that age but ive never ran into or known one.

    And your kids might never get into biking, they will find their own hobbies, the more you try and get them to appreciate it theres a chance they will like it even less, you know how kids are.

    All i can say is that if you are any chance to get into biking you have to make it FUN, and more fun than alternative things they could be doing and if it never happens it never happens, more time for you to enjoy YOUR passion and ride at your own pace.

    There is one thing i see as a dirty word, and thats 'competition' ..
    Because it can have the habit or turning fun and enjoyment into competing against other kids which can be a very unhappy time for them if they are not interested.
    i think thats a negative in itself, unless the kids are the ones that make the call and show the interest that they want to do it.
    Im not saying its a bad thing, it comes down to the nature of the child, but what is a bad thing is parents that try and get their kids to compete when they have no desire..

    cheers mate
    Last edited by Tone's; 02-10-2013 at 05:57 AM.
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  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    hey, i didn't start the personal attacks, look at my first post.

    and the post that follows as well as the edited one...
    My post was for other Chris. Thought that would have been obvious. Guess not.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tone's View Post
    First off Biggie, why would a 12 year old kid want to ride 40k, with all due respect, why would you expect him to be interested in that, i cant get my head around it..

    Yes im sure theres a handful of kids that might like it at that age but ive never ran into or known one.

    And your kids might never get into biking, they will find their own hobbies, the more you try and get them to appreciate it theres a chance they will like it even less, you know how kids are.

    All i can say is that if you are any chance to get into biking you have to make it FUN, and more fun than alternative things they could be doing and if it never happens it never happens, more time for you to enjoy YOUR passion and ride at your own pace.

    There is one thing i see as a dirty word, and thats 'competition' ..
    Because it can have the habit or turning fun and enjoyment into competing against other kids which can be a very unhappy time for them if they are not interested.
    i think thats a negative in itself, unless the kids are the ones that make the call and show the interest that they want to do it.

    Im not saying its a bad thing, it comes down to the nature of the child, but what is a bad thing is parents that try and get their kids to compete when they have no desire..

    cheers mate
    I certainly understand where you are coming from. I'm not sure you are an East Coaster here, but minor hockey really brings out the uglier side of adults (myself included). That said, my kids have to do an outdoor activity summer and winter, in addition to the water stuff they do at our summer place all summer long. They also have to do an hour of piano a week and put in decent efforts with their homework. I don't feel exposure to competition is bad at all. Just forced exposure. And pressure.

    We almost lost our oldest son last summer when my Wife sent him white water kayaking on the Ottawa river under prepared. She had to watch him while he rolled in a wave for 2 minutes, screaming, "Help!" the odd rotation when he got his head up. But his athleticism saved him. The water kep him from being able to sit forward to pull his ripcord so he put his hands on the side of the cockpit and ejected himself and the skirt from the boat. Not sure I've forgiven the wife on that one. Not many 11 yearolds who have stared death straight in the eye and gave him the old , "Screw You".

    The decision to do the 63km Paris 2 Ancaster was his. When he bailed I was dissappointed but know it was a good decision. You don't know me - I'm a fat bloated 3 cheeseburger/20 timbit eating anti-athelete. The hardest part of 40km for him would be towing his FatDad and listening to me snivel. He could do it. I think he could do the 40, fairly easy in 2 1/2 hours. I wouldn't be difficult to keep up with. My biggest concern with new cyclists is taint chafe, pink puffy crack and general undercarriage malaise.

    Slainte.
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    I certainly understand where you are coming from. I'm not sure you are an East Coaster here, but minor hockey really brings out the uglier side of adults (myself included). That said, my kids have to do an outdoor activity summer and winter, in addition to the water stuff they do at our summer place all summer long. They also have to do an hour of piano a week and put in decent efforts with their homework. I don't feel exposure to competition is bad at all. Just forced exposure. And pressure.

    We almost lost our oldest son last summer when my Wife sent him white water kayaking on the Ottawa river under prepared. She had to watch him while he rolled in a wave for 2 minutes, screaming, "Help!" the odd rotation when he got his head up. But his athleticism saved him. The water kep him from being able to sit forward to pull his ripcord so he put his hands on the side of the cockpit and ejected himself and the skirt from the boat. Not sure I've forgiven the wife on that one. Not many 11 yearolds who have stared death straight in the eye and gave him the old , "Screw You".

    The decision to do the 63km Paris 2 Ancaster was his. When he bailed I was dissappointed but know it was a good decision. You don't know me - I'm a fat bloated 3 cheeseburger/20 timbit eating anti-athelete. The hardest part of 40km for him would be towing his FatDad and listening to me snivel. He could do it. I think he could do the 40, fairly easy in 2 1/2 hours. I wouldn't be difficult to keep up with. My biggest concern with new cyclists is taint chafe, pink puffy crack and general undercarriage malaise.

    Slainte.
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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Circlip View Post
    My post was for other Chris. Thought that would have been obvious. Guess not.
    apology accepted
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unglued View Post
    No one knows your kids better than you.
    i would say that is a loaded statement... parental projection is the extreme side of things... what tones said is very valid (the mod does not live in ec so why does it matter that tones does not live here?)... there is a lot of information on this subject (below is just a sprinkling) and it is a difficult issue for people to acknowledge.

    Are You Enmeshed with Your Children?

    Are our pampered kids under too much pressure? - The Globe and Mail

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  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    apology accepted
    Call it an explanation, not an apology. On the other hand, an apology from you would be appropriate for the ridiculous and highly erroneous message (i.e. post report) you sent to me.

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    This is a good thread, let's try to keep it on topic. My son is just turning 6, and I'd sure like him to get into cycling so keep the ideas coming please! Got a few other sports and activities lined up of course variety is good.

    Some people here seem to have both, but if you had to choose a next bike for a 6-7 year old would you choose a (geared) mountain bike or a bmx?

  42. #42
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    I got my son a geared mountain bike first. then he showed interest in bmx too, so now has both. Started with a mountain bike because he wanted to trail ride with me. It was sort of a dirt jump bike with gears, so worked for jumps too. hard to trail ride on a bmx.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kay. View Post
    Some people here seem to have both, but if you had to choose a next bike for a 6-7 year old would you choose a (geared) mountain bike or a bmx?
    My Son riding at 4 and basically moved up a wheel size each year from 14" to 16" and now he rides an 18" BMX, all from Toys R US. His present ride is aluminum frame, I removed some pieces, made his brakes work, etc. Its actuallt pretty light. His MTB is a 20" Giant. He prefers the Giant on trails, obviously. As Tone alluded to, bombing around the block, riding stairs and ramps he BMXes.

    I like having both. I think I'll get good return on Investment on them on kijiji when he's done with them.

    The BMX from Toys R US the brakes didn't work at all when new. However, the bike looks great and when on sale is $100.
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

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    This is him, apparently, having fun on a 14" wheeled $69 Spiderman bike. Fun can be had on cheap bikes.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Introducing Kids to the Sport???-quinnair.jpg  

    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

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    Quote Originally Posted by singlesprocket View Post
    ... what tones said is very valid (the mod does not live in ec so why does it matter that tones does not live here?)... there is a lot of information on this subject (below is just a sprinkling) and it is a difficult issue for people to acknowledge.
    I certainly didn't mean to diminish what Tone said, my point was that unless you have lived minor hockey it is unimaginable the level of pressure little boys and girls are exposed to. I would imagine it is unique among the sports. Skating is more difficult than walking and the "need" to have kids doing backwards and forwards crossovers by 6 is really insane. In soccer and rugby if a kid can't run its all she wrote. In hockey parents go, "maybe he just needs more power skating."
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

  46. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kay. View Post
    Some people here seem to have both, but if you had to choose a next bike for a 6-7 year old would you choose a (geared) mountain bike or a bmx?
    I'd say at that age, you'd probably be fine with a singlespeed either way. Gears just get in the way of having fun.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biggie View Post
    I certainly didn't mean to diminish what Tone said, my point was that unless you have lived minor hockey it is unimaginable the level of pressure little boys and girls are exposed to. I would imagine it is unique among the sports. Skating is more difficult than walking and the "need" to have kids doing backwards and forwards crossovers by 6 is really insane. In soccer and rugby if a kid can't run its all she wrote. In hockey parents go, "maybe he just needs more power skating."
    Biggie, we play rugby league and rugby union here with the former known as the most violent and toughest team sport on the planet, so much so that when visiting American pro footballers come here they comment to the man that they cannot believe that people play it, no helmets or pads are used, its a demanding and tough game, yes i agree hockey is too, i watch quite a bit of it, but its no more tougher or skillful than rugby league, or junior boxing for that matter, we breed em pretty tough here too mate.
    But i will say i admire the aggression and skill level of ice hockey, but its not just a matter of ''if kids can run its all she wrote'' in regards to Rugby league, you need skill, composure, toughness, especially if your a little white kid playing against tongans, samoans and kiwis that are twice your weight and size looking to smash you as soon as you touch the ball, its a real tough game league, Hockey aint even in the same book at a kids or adult level.
    cheers
    Last edited by Tone's; 02-12-2013 at 12:07 AM.
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  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tone's View Post
    Biggie, we play rugby league and rugby union here with the former known as the most violent and toughest team sport on the planet, so much so that when visiting American pro footballers come here they comment to the man that they cannot believe that people play it, no helmets or pads are used, its a demanding and tough game, yes i agree hockey is too, i watch quite a bit of it, but its no more tougher or skillful than rugby league, or junior boxing for that matter, we breed em pretty tough here too mate.
    But i will say i admire the aggression and skill level of ice hockey, but its not just a matter of ''if kids can run its all she wrote'' in regards to Rugby league, you need skill, composure, toughness, especially if your a little white kid playing against tongans, samoans and kiwis that are twice your weight and size looking to smash you as soon as you touch the ball, its a real tough game league, Hockey aint even in the same book at a kids or adult level.
    cheers
    I come from Canada's hot spot for rugby, The Rock. Launch pad of Rod Snow, Ciaren Hearn, Chauncey O'toole, etc.

    Sorry for the lack of clarity, I wasn't comparing the athleticism or courage required for each. My point about the uniqueness of hockey is skating. Because hockey is played on skates parents often over look their children's complete lack of athleticism and continue throwing money at power skating. Skating camouflages a simple lack of athleticism.

    Perhaps, 20 years ago, rugby props were less atheletic. But in today's rugby everyone gets around the field. The days of 5'8", 300lb props and hookers seem like they are gone...that is what I meant by, "if they can't run it is all she wrote".
    "I love being on a bike. It helps me feel free. I get it from my dad", by Guillaume Blanchet

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    Best way to get kids into the sport is 5 hour slog fests on gravel roads on a road bike in April in the rain.

  50. #50
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    Here is my experience, based on a family of four, currently ages 2 thru 9 yrs. We have a mix of 1 boy and 3 girls. They run the gambit in terms of athleticism from very athletic, to not athletic at all.

    During the summer we have weekly outings to Kelso on a Sunday afternoon where we rip a few trails up together, and then go to the beach as a family for a swim. For the ride we have frequent stops and make sure to pack lots of snacks for when they get hungry. The highlight of the day is playing at the beach, not the ride:-)

    We also go to the family friendly Tuesday night race series at Kelso. My wife and I race, and there is a free kids course as well. We put no pressure on them to race and if they don't finish a race, it's no problem. The kids have been doing it for the last couple years, typically beginning at 4-5 years of age. The two oldest hope to graduate to the Beginner adult course this summer. Our criteria to race the adult course will be that they can complete the course without any help. They have become familiar with the trails and understand the race etiquette for letting others pass.

    From an equipment perspective, we started them on bikes found on the side of the road, graduated them to a department store 6-speed with 20" wheels at ~5, and now the 7 and 9 year old are riding 18-speeds with 24" wheels. You can get great bikes for good value at MEC (Dash-20" wheels, and Ace-24" wheels.) Moral of the story, you don't need to spend a lot of $$ on bikes to get them started.

    The kids interest in mountain biking is growing. Last summer I took my 6 year old to Hardwood Hills (Barrie) and he road 28k worth of trails-- and I was following him (he is the more athletic one of the kids though.) At this point they are starting to ask to get involved in things like O-Cup races which they have been exposed to from an early age.

    From my experience the key is to get the kids started fairly early, keep it fun (e.g. short), and bring them along to things like Kelso races and O-cups. Don't be discouraged if you have a few meltdowns along the trail but try to understand why they are melting down and adjust accordingly (for us, lack of sleep and/or hungry are typically the root cause.) For us though the goal isn't to get our kids to race necessarily (that would be fun though I think), but to teach them a healthy and active lifestyle.

    With respect to the original post on the P2A race, perhaps riding tandem, or with a trail-a-bike is an option? I have a friend who did this with his son at around the same age and it worked well. At the end of the day though, I wouldn't do it unless a) they really want to do it, and b) I'm confident they are capable of completing the race.

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