Kids need to be in 5th grade or higher for Street Skills 1 summer program. Spring programs accomodate kids in 4th grade. Kids must be in 5th grade or higher for Street Skills 2.
We start off with just a few miles the first day working on handling skills on blacktop, parking lot or quiet street area and build on mileage each day.
We will do rides around the kids' school and do one from each rider's home to their school showing them the best way to get to school, where to walk bikes, where to watch for busy traffic, etc.
We request full-time attendance for several reasons. First, we work on riding skills from the first day of the week and build on them throughout the week. Missing a day, especially early in the week, puts your child at a disadvantage in terms of skills development and also leaves the coaches uncertain about her or his skill level. Second, since we’re on the go it can be difficult to arrange a place and time for a mid-day pick up or drop off. It can be done, but the logistics are tricky. Finally, we maintain a 1:6 or lower coach to rider ratio which is easier to do if we have a stable attendance throughout each week. On most days we can arrange for an early pickup – just let us know when you need to meet us and we’ll do our best to make it as convenient as possible for you to pick up your kid and the bike. We just ask that you be flexible on the exact time as the group of kids riding doesn't operate like clockwork.
If your bike rider leaves the registered session early, refunds will not be granted for absences, dismissal, or voluntary withdrawal from the registered activity for any reason.
We make every effort to ensure that our events proceed as planned. However, sometimes weather, enrollment conflicts or other circumstances may interfere. See our Refund Policy Page for our various events. We do not issue credits for future events.
Believe it or not, bicycle riders are usually safest when they act and are treated as drivers of vehicles. Most people driving cars are looking in the roadway for oncoming traffic or which traffic to yield to. Hardly ever do drivers slow down enough to look back at the sidewalk to see if there is a bicycle rider coming off the sidewalk into the crosswalk.
Kids in Street Skills 1 will be coached on which streets are safe to ride on and which streets they should use the sidewalk. Sidewalk coaching will include stopping at the end of each street and walking bikes in crosswalks for younger riders.
Many of our sidewalks have terrible visibility to see if there is someone to yield to on the sidewalk. In addition, people riding bikes typically move much faster than walking speeds making it often impossible to stop in enough time to avoid hitting a bicycle rider.
Many people are surprised to know that in most cases people riding bikes do not have pedestrian rights and the law almost never protects a bicycle rider in a crosswalk, only pedestrians. The false sense of security regarding always having the right of way on sidewalks does not apply to people on bikes and can be so dangerous to kids.
Teaching kids the rules of the road, how to communicate with car drivers and how to behave as part of traffic is much safer for them. Car drivers are more comfortable around bicycle riders when their behavior is predictable. When bicycle riders behave as traffic it's not confusing or surprising to the other road users. Bicycle riders on the road are visible to car drivers and they have time to see them and yield to them or move around them.
Bike riders need to be able to ride bikes on two wheels and are capable of riding independently. They should be able to start and stop on their own without falling or using help (curbs, rails, walls, your leg, etc.), and be able to ride straight without swerving from side to side.
With those basics underway, we will build on more bike handling control skills to get them ready to ride on the road safely.
Let us know if you need a private lesson to teach them how to ride a bike.
Our preference is to ride, no matter the weather. We will take advantage of teaching the skills of riding bikes in wet weather.
If the forecast suggests rain or is uncertain, pack an extra pair of socks and send along a rain jacket and other wet weather gear (but no umbrellas, please).
If the rain gets heavy for a while we’ll get off our bikes and wait it out – there are plenty of indoor destinations that we can explore if needed. Sometimes we may change plans for an event and leave the bikes behind, getting to our destinations on foot or transit. But these are rare days, indeed.
Heavy rain cancels a class. If it can't be rescheduled, a refund for the class will be given.
Kids will carry their own lunches and locks in backpacks. Coaches will have some extra supplies such as bike pumps, extra sunblock, first aid and snacks and energy drinks when possible to carry.
Backpacks can sometimes make a rider's back sweaty on hot days so you might consider adding a rear wheel rack for the option of adding side bags, baskets or a bungee a milk crate on top to hold a backpack and gear.
Kids will need a bike frame that properly fits their height with at least seven gears in good working condition. No fixed gear bikes.
Find a reputable bike shop you’re comfortable with. If they make you feel stupid because you’re not a bike geek, find another shop. If they make you feel like you and bicycling were made for one another give them your credit card and thank them very much. Ask as many questions as necessary in order to know what you’re doing. You may choose to buy a used bike off a friend or Craigslist, but you’ll return to that shop many times for tune ups, gear, energy bars, spandex products and just to hang out. There are a lot of bike shops in the area, and several of them have proven to be good friends of Easy Street Cycling. See our partners list here for a guide to these shops. And remember these nice folks at your local shop won't be able to stay in business if you look at their items and then purchase them off the internet.
Lastly, be careful of department store or discount store bikes (places that don't have their own mechanic for tune ups). The frame may be fine (maybe) but the equipment may not be – and you’ll spend more on replacement parts and repairs than you saved in the first place. We've seen many kids with bikes from discount stores with brakes that are not able to tighten accurately, gears that are hard to get into place, etc. These things all make for a frustrating experience for your kid. It's worth getting a good bike that will last.
Here is our Bike Buying Guide page if you need to buy a new one.
Yes, bikes can be stored with us. Your rider will lock up their bike in the backyard outside. Bike owners leave them with us at their own risk.