GSIGN

Member
Apr 10, 2007
9
0
How do you guys feel about this set up?

Can anyone share their experiences with them, good and bad?

Is there a general accepted age for this set up?

Thanks for any advice or links to info about this set up.
 

Patman

Pantless Wonder
LIFETIME SPONSOR
Dec 26, 1999
19,774
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I don't agree with using them. If the child can't ride without them then they should not a motorized bike. Let them learn to deal with the balance necessary to ride or leave them on electric toys with 3 or 4 wheels. Basically the trainning wheels are just to satisfy the parents need to have their kid ride.
 

Steve St.Laurent

Mi. Trail Riders
Member
Feb 6, 2006
255
0
My $.02 . I required my daughter to learn how to ride her bicycle well without training wheels before I'd let her ride a motorcycle. I did get her a good set of training wheels for her CRF50 and once she was good on the bicycle I let her ride the CRF with the training wheels. My thought process was that having the training wheels there would allow her to concentrate on the throttle, brakes (both of em), and shifting instead of dealing with the balance of the heavier bike at the same time. She rode on the training wheels for a couple months (maybe 6 rides) and then the training wheels came off and she was riding without them. She was 5 about to turn 6 when she started riding. The wheels I bought were the kind that bolts to the middle of the bike and they were very well built. I think it was worth it and eased the transition. Here's a pic of her when she was riding with the training wheels and another one a few months later when she was attending the MSF dirt bike school (which was a GREAT investment, btw and I would highly suggest it).

The other thing I did was went with a CRF50 specifically because all of the controls were in the proper location and she could learn to shift it. The PW50 has the rear brake on the left hand. Her next bike will be a CRF80 which will add the clutch to the required skills. I thought the training wheels were a good stepping stone to help her attain the needed skills to ride well.

BTW, she was the one who asked for a motorcycle - I never even hinted at it.
 

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Patman

Pantless Wonder
LIFETIME SPONSOR
Dec 26, 1999
19,774
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My son started at 4.5 on a PW50. The deal was no dirt bike until he could ride his bicycle without trainning wheels. Well I found a good deal on a used PW50 so I bought and put it in the garage. He wanted badly to ride it but it sat for several days. He did put in a great effort to get outrigger free but just couldn't loose one (I removed the left one to help prod him along). Finally one Saturday my wife who was going to school was at the library for more studying/research so I decided we'd give it a go. Well he duck walked the bike for 10 minutes, kept trying to get his feet up then finally got it. After about 1.5 hours I took him back to his bicycle and popped off the last trainning wheel. He mounted up and rode away just a mom got home. I suspect wanting to ride so badly and then all the effort he put in to duckwalking the bike until he found his balance helped him find his balance since he didn't have to worry about pedels to make the bike go.

Maybe I'm just too hard core or maybe I just didn't feel I had to have him riding so badly that I'd do anything to make it happen. Bottom line for me is that the trainning wheels are a new development for dirt bikes. In this day and age of parents needing to feel their child is ahead of the curve it's just another thing to buy for short term use.
 

FruDaddy

Member
Aug 21, 2005
2,854
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I don't feel that training wheels have any business on a motorcycle. While Steve's thinking is great for him, and I will not disagree with his decision if it worked. Personally, I stood at one end of the yard and had my boy ride to me. Once he had it down, and he started bugging me, I let him start riding in ovals. It took about 2 days. This was a case of no ride bicycle, no ride motorcycle, although I have read here (on DRN) that some kids find it easier to balance a motorcycle.

If you do decide to use training wheels, do not put the kid on a motocross track. If the kid doesn't have the balance, or coordination, or whatever to ride on two wheels, then the kid has absolutely no business on a track where the only question is how bad will the fall be. I have seen a couple of kids on training wheels get a little too brave, one of which went over the bars on a 6 inch hump. Training wheels ARE for flat terrain.
 

High Lord Gomer

Poked with Sticks
Sep 26, 1999
11,790
34
My older ones were all older when they started. My youngest wanted a motorcycle but I told him not until he could ride his bicycle without training wheels. At 4 1/2 (July 4th AAMOF) he rode without training wheels. The following weekend an XR50 came home.

I have seen too many kids trying to negotiate rough terrain on a PW with training wheels when they had no business on the bike.

BTW, I stuck the XR in 1st and took the shifter off. I then cut the shifter in half so I could select the gear and he stayed in that gear (usually 2nd).
 

XRpredator

AssClown SuperPowers
Damn Yankees
Aug 2, 2000
13,510
19
same thing here. "You get a dirt bike when you can ride your bike without the training wheels."

He actually found the motorcycle easier, since he could move while using his feet as outriggers ;)

Having said that, if you are gonna go training wheels, get the kind Steve used.
 

FruDaddy

Member
Aug 21, 2005
2,854
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High Lord Gomer said:
Yeah....right!! :rotfl:
My son's motivation was my first road cycle and the fact that he felt like the PW50 in the Yami shop would fit him. He was in the dirt long before I was. The racing started when a parts guy told us about a race on the same night that I was buying parts for my current street ride. He has been having so much fun that I had to get dirty too.

Moral, not all kids are pushed into dirt bikes.
 

Steve St.Laurent

Mi. Trail Riders
Member
Feb 6, 2006
255
0
High Lord Gomer said:
Yeah....right!! :rotfl:

Our story is much like FruDaddy's. I was going into the motorcycle shop to pick up parts for my street bike. They had 4 or 5 CRF50's sitting there by the parts counter and she walked up to one and said "Look daddy, it's just my size!" (very excitedly). Then she asked the parts guy if she could sit on it - of course he said yes. She asked me if she could get one and I told her no. After that each time she heard I was going to the shop she'd want to come along and sit on the bike. A couple months later I traded a poker table for a couple dirt bikes to play in the yard with (rm80 & xr100 for me) and she wanted to ride on them with me and she kept asking for one for herself. After a few months of that we bought hers. Now she's the one who reads the Great Lakes trail rider and when she sees a kids ride coming up she asks if we can go (we do). She also saw Motokids magazine advertised in my Cycle News and asked if she could get that as well.

She talks about wanting to race regularly but I'm trying to talk her out of that (flat out telling her no now). I'd rather she didn't get into racing and just enjoyed it as a hobby - or at some point maybe ride enduro's along with me. I got busted up read bad road racing and I know plenty of guys that have done the same thing with motocross.
 
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oldguy

Always Broken
Dec 26, 1999
9,419
0
Actually Spider was the motivation all by himself for a dirtbike. When he was about 5 we went to a sports show/ expo (hunting and fishing) but the local AMA district had a display about MX there. As soon as we walked near their booth he ran over and jumped on the 60 they were displaying and started making the sounds of riding. The nice lady in the booth (now a very close friend 14 years later) started her sales pitch about it being a family sport and on and on with the same propaganda I now use on people. Remembering my broken back from racing when I was 14 and the fact we just could not afford it right then I some how broke his little fingers away from that bike and dragged him away. The next 5 or so weeks were brutal around our house as he talked non stop about a dirtbike and how he needed one. Eventually it went away (we thought) as he realized he was not getting a dirtbike and some other new necessity entered his world. 4 years later out of the blue ( he had never once mentioned a dirtbike or that he was saving his money for one) he declared he had $450 saved up and he now wanted to buy a dirtbike. At this point I said ask your mom and her answer is the final answer - much to my amazement she said yes and now 10 years later he is still addicted to racing.
I even at one point 2 seasons ago after he was stretchered off an MX track for the 4th time that season with serious injuries offered that I would figure out what we spend on racing and give him that cash for whatever he wanted if he would quit (he had turned 16 and wanted a car bad). His answer was no way he wanted to race.
So I guess kids can pull us adults into this without any prodding from the parents
 

WoodsRider

Sponsoring Member<BR>Club Moderator
Damn Yankees
Oct 13, 1999
2,812
0
Like others have posted, I feel a child should not be riding a motorized single-track vehicle if they do not have a sense of balance. My oldest has had his bicycle for two years, but started riding it without training wheels in April. He learned how to balance after getting a Razor scooter for Christmas.

That being said, training wheels on a 50 can be useful for children who already know how to ride a bicycle without training wheels. A child can learn throttle control and braking without having to worry about balancing. Once those techniques are mastered in a flat open field, remove the training wheels.
 

MXGirl230

Stupid tires and trees
~SPONSOR~
Mi. Trail Riders
Dec 19, 2002
2,358
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Phil and I don't have any kids, but feel that they should not be on a dirt bike until they have mastered riding a bike w/out training wheels. It's just not a good idea, IMO.

A few years ago we were at a track on a practice day and some guy was helping his son maneuver his way around the kids track on a XR 50 w/training wheels. That's when we agreed that if our kid can't ride on two wheels, absolutely no dirt bike. Later on that day the kid ran into the side of a truck (not his dads)and dented the door up pretty good.
 

wanaride

~SPONSOR~
Jul 18, 2003
492
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Everyone has their opinions and these posts make good points. With that said, I disagree with most everyone here.

I used the "Wheels4Tots" on our PW50 and all three of my kids used them. My youngest son started riding it on his 4th birthday. The training wheels let the kids get confidence and learn throttle control and braking without having to simultaneously learn balance. Once they learned how to ride a bicycle without training wheels, the dirt bike also lost its training wheels, and the rest is history.

Two of my kids (10 and 6) have now graduated to bigger bikes, and my middle child is limited to what he can do because of his autism.

The way I see it, a child who isn't ready for a dirtbike (without training wheels) could get scared trying to learn throttle control AND braking AND balance at the same time. The training wheels get them started faster.

If I had to do it over again, I would get the training wheels in a heartbeat. They certainly didn't harm my kids. I could have waited until they could ride a bicycle without training wheels, but frankly, I didn't want to. I guess I was being selfish there... ;)
 

FruDaddy

Member
Aug 21, 2005
2,854
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wanaride said:
The way I see it, a child who isn't ready for a dirtbike (without training wheels) could get scared trying to learn throttle control AND braking AND balance at the same time.
A child that isn't ready for a dirtbike shouldn't be on a dirtbike, it IS that simple.

Riding the bicycle first develops that balance that you mentioned, and a child that is actually ready for a dirtbike and really wants to ride one will learn to pedal the two wheeler in order to earn that dirtbike.

The throttle stop on most beginner 50s will keep the cycle slow until braking is learned (it doesn't take long) and you can gradually allow more throttle while the child is learning the throttle control.
 
May 10, 2007
957
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i agree i dont have kids (obviously im 14) but my opinion on this (which will probably be ignored because of my age but w/e) is that if you cant balance on a 20 lb at the most bike then how are you gonna balance on a considerably heavier motorcycle. if you fall on a bike you pick it up and get back on but if you (i mean a little kid) falls on a motorcycle they might have trouble picking up their bike and starting again. plus the fact that if the parent is putting them on the bike they might be thinking OH little johnny is ok out in the yard he cant get hurt. so they might walk away and not watch. (i dont know any parents who would do this but their probably are some)

also if you can balance on a bike why cant you balance on the motorcycle. i thought that balancing on my first dirt bike was easier then balancing on my bicycle (and when i learned to ride i was 10)

another thing is that some kids and parents for that fact get too much confidence watching their kid riding around on training wheels in their back yard. they then think oh little johnny is pretty good lets go take him to the track/trails. they then get their and the kid gets in some pretty deep Uh trouble yea thats the word. in that case the wheels are causing more harm then good cuz the kid on training wheels put-puting around at the track is becoming a moving obstacle for the other riders going full race/practice speed.

bottom line just wait for the kid to ride a bike (w/o training wheels) before the motorcycle. thats what i will do if/when i ever have kids.

PS this is probably gonna be full of all people going bah what do you know you dont have kids so w/e its just my opinion
 

ghunter

LIFETIME SPONSOR
Sep 24, 2001
133
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MY daughter is five and started riding a quad just as she turned four. She always wanted to ride a motorcycle - like her Daddy and two older brothers - but refused to ride a motorcycle with training wheels because I had already taken them off her bicycle. Last weekend was her first attempt and let me tell you, she was ready.

As she was sitting on the bike listening to Daddy ramble on about how to do this, how to do that, and where not to go, she looked up at me and smiled...and nailed the throttle. I almost fainted.

Of course, I had plugged up the exhaust, removed the front brake (since her quad uses a right hand brake for the rear), and severely limited the throttle of her JR50; but it was all over from that moment. I haven't been able to get her off the bike without threatening her with losing the privilege of riding.

Some children are more tentative about riding then others. I had to use training wheels with both of her older brothers as neither of them could manage the balance, braking, and throttle control without them. However, within an hour the training wheels came off and they were both riding on their own.

I truly believe that used as they are intended - as a TRAINING device - a set of training wheels can be a positive learning experience for a child as they are becoming accustomed to mastering all the intricate measures required to ride a motorcycle. However, I do not agree that kids should continue using such devices for more than a short period of time. As with most similar things, they can become a crutch and actually hinder the development of good riding skills.
 

GSIGN

Member
Apr 10, 2007
9
0
Hay guys, thanks for the input. I appreciate the sound advice.

My son is 2 1/2. He has been riding with my wife or myself on quads since birth, and my RM at 1 1/2 years. He loves to ride.

My wife and I had the discussion a year ago when and what we would buy him. I told her that the day he learns to ride his bike without training wheels, I want to buy him a dirt bike. I feel that with a dirt bike one stands a better chance of getting away from it in a wipe out than with a 4 wheeler. When I started riding, there were no 4 wheelers, I laid my bike down on a daily basis, luckily I never broke anything on my bod that I know of.

Anyway, I saw a little bike with training wheels at a shop a couple of weeks ago and it got me to thinking irrational thoughts. I had never seen this set up before. You guys brought me back to my senses.

I know how you guys feel when you go to the local shop and your kid runs to the first small bike/wheeler, climbs on and starts making the vvrroom noise and twisting the throttle. Makes you feel warm and fuzzy all over doesn't it... It makes the hair stand on the back of my neck. Anticipation I hope... :yikes:

I need to spend more time with my son on the bicycle track at the local park.

Practice, practice, practice.
 
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