How To Teach Your Child To Balance On An E-scooter
Riding a scooter is similar to riding a bike in that overbalancing can cause children to fall. It is important to teach your child how to properly use and how to balance on an e-scooter. If your child already knows how to ride a bike without any training wheels, the following step is something you can skip.
Regular scooters have handlebars that your child can hold onto while you pull them around with both of their feet on the deck. You can also use this method to help your child learn when and how to use the brake.
With e-scooters, this is a bit different as you don’t have the opportunity to lead your child around. A better way to teach children the art of balancing on a child’s electric scooter is to make sure the scooter is off, and have them place a foot on the floor while the other is on the deck. Then, simply have your child practice placing their other foot on the deck as well.
Step 1: Establish Dominant Foot
Anyone riding a scooter should be well aware of their dominant foot. Much like most people are right-handed, scooter riders usually ride with their right foot being dominant. However, some will find that their left foot is the dominant foot used for riding scooters.
It’s well worth noting that riding with left feet first is hardly strange, just not as common. There are two main ways you can determine which foot is dominant for your child:
Have your child spread their feet and pretend to fall. Usually, they will subconsciously break their fall by placing a foot forward. This foot is considered dominant.
If you’re concerned about causing a potential accident, you can simply ask your child to scale a set of stairs going up. Usually, the dominant foot is the one your child uses first to climb a flight of stairs.
Step 2: Help Prepare Your Child For The Right Stance
After you’ve helped your child figure out which of their feet is their dominant one, it’s crucial to teach them that this foot is the one that goes behind their weaker foot that remains on the scooter deck. In short, the dominant foot is the one pushing the scooter. This helps them to balance on an e-scooter.
Step 3: Ensure The Correct Height
E-scooters are usually height adjustable, so make sure the scooter is the appropriate height for your child. Additionally, many scooters also have adjustable handlebars that will make it easier to accommodate children of any size.
The proper way to determine the height of the scooter is to have your child stand on the scooter with both feet planted on the deck. You will need to help them balance, but make sure you adjust the scooter’s height to fall between their waist and hips.
Many children want their handlebars higher than their waist, but for safety reasons, discourage your child from doing this. Especially for beginners, it’s too easy to lose control of the scooter if it isn’t adjusted to the correct height.
Step 4: Take It For A Spin
Your child is now ready to try actually riding the scooter. However, make sure that he or she has plenty of space outdoors on a flat paved surface where they can try.
While learning to balance, it’s crucial that your child wears plenty of protective pads and a helmet in case they fall. Usually, empty basketball courts or a school parking lot during the weekends is a good place to find plenty of outdoor space. Make sure you avoid any areas where there’s traffic!
Give your child the chance to prepare themselves for the perfect scooter stance. Have them grab both handlebars and straddle the sides of the scooter with both feet. Have your child place their weaker foot on the scooter deck and have them keep their dominant foot planted firmly on the ground.
Once your child masters the art of balancing a stationary scooter, they can progress to riding in motion.
Step 5: The Push Start
You start electric scooters by placing a foot on the deck and pushing off with the other foot. Once the scooter is in motion, have your child keep both of their feet on the scooter deck. Usually, this is referred to as kick-starting a scooter.
The accelerator button controls speed, but do make sure it is on the lowest setting at first. When they need the scooter to stop, they must engage the brakes. Always encourage your child to start slow to get the hang of things.
A tip that many parents find helpful is holding onto their child’s shoulder when they first take off or running after them to make sure they have everything under control.
Step 6: Always Utilize The Controls On The Handlebars
The buttons that control the speed and the brakes of the scooter are located on the handlebars. The designs may sometimes vary by manufacturer, but make sure to properly teach your child how to utilize these functions when going for a ride.
It’s crucial to purchase a scooter for your child that he or she feels wholly comfortable with using. That means their feet should easily touch the ground if necessary. Having more control over the scooter and its processes will mean that your child feels more at ease learning how to ride and they will feel confident in staying safe.