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 Post subject: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:11 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:30 am
Posts: 2248
So, who is happy to let their 10/11 year old go off up the lane and onto the tracks and into the fields on his mountain bike? On his own? Lane is quiet and residential, track goes off into fields used by local dogwalkers. Otherwise don't tend to see anyone up there, except the odd fisherman. Head says yes, heart says "my little boy!"
Keen boy angling for independence, has twin brother, but won't always go together.

Thoughts?


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:59 pm
Posts: 2831
Ds2 (11) goes off down the main road through the village, to the park or down to his grandparents house (again down the main street) on his own and off cycling with his best friend. They have gone up to the woods together, but that is hard going on bikes, so they tend to walk to den build. But I am still nervous until I see him coming up the drive!


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 7:55 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2012 10:59 am
Posts: 3579
11 year old bikes through woods, up to dels or park to meet friends. 13 year old zooms about where ever. 9 year old has to be with a bruv. The condition is a phone in a zippy pocket. I would not be happy about boys aimlessly cycling at primary age, I like to think he is meeting someone, or has a destination. They are always given a home time, and always panic they have missed it....remember that feeling. :lol: I can still see my mum, with her arms crossed on the doorstep!

Always with lids btw, and always clipped on properly, there is a network of snitchers round here, just in case they try to be cool. The fact they are in woods, so everyone wears a lid helps.


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 8:28 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 01, 2007 11:19 am
Posts: 888
We don't have fields to cycle to, but at 10/11 my son was regularly doing the 3 miles across town (mostly off-road - by the river and through the park) to his grandparents. Meant when he started school he knew the quietest route already :)

I worry about the idiots on the road though - he got completely carved up by a double decker bus on Friday.


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 9:05 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2009 10:59 am
Posts: 5923
One of my sons is a very serious cyclist and I hate him going off alone on his lightweight road bike but he still does. I worry about the idiots on the road but he gets cross with me. He also mountain bikes on the hills but then he has to be with his friend. My lot have been cycling on quiet lanes alone since about 11 but I make them take a phone. I've had to go and rescue punctures once or twice (though the serious one has a snazzy kit) and a fall once or twice too. I like to cycle too but do feel it is a dangerous thing to do, largely because of motorists. When I'm in my car I try to treat cyclists with respect and give them room, but some people zoom past and cut in in terrifying fashion. White van drivers are worst. My family bought me a funky high viz cycling jacket for Christmas and I feel much safer in it, but the children refuse to wear one. :(


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Mon Mar 17, 2014 9:40 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2012 10:59 am
Posts: 3579
I have to say my biggest ever scare was dh, whilst I was pregnant with ds1, he did not arrive hone from his regular 20 mile, off road bike ride, and pub crawl with friends. After midnight I rang the last pub stop, they had seen him leave an hour earlier, so went searching to no avail. He finally showed up a few hours later, filthy, with a few cuts and bruises, completely unaware of all the fuss...He had fallen off and lost two hours somewhere in the woods presumably at first medically unconscious, then "just asleep". Scary stuff!

Boys have all got cycling scars..the very worst was an over the handlebars injury on ds3's willy when he was 7...luckily it happened just outside the gate. Husband still shudders at the thought of it, bless him, it had to be superglued back together in a&e :shock:

Hence, they all have to have a phone...even though it is not always in reception, and it is useless if they are "asleep" in the wood!


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 2:36 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2013 7:30 am
Posts: 2248
OK, you've all both reassured me (thank you) and frightened me (also thank you, fears that I'd never even thought of having!). This really is one where you have to be accepting of risk and just have to minimise it isn't it?
I suspect I am going to land on not going alone (twin bro after all and much den building to be done), and as summer approaches I may give in to the phone, though only my old one as not getting a new one to land in a muddy brook!!!
Thanks to you all for your terrifying stories or fearlessness and child 'derring-do', its much appreciated


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 2:45 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 18, 2012 10:59 am
Posts: 3579
Well done :)

When you buy their Sumner shorts, just make sure they have a zippy pocket for the old phone...many don't, it tends to be the sports shorts that do.

Also mine now wear fingerless gloves designed for mountain biking, when they go off road...So when they do fall off and reach out to save themselves their hands do not get shredded...took us 3 years, and a stitched thumb cut to suss that one!


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Tue Mar 18, 2014 3:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2013 7:59 pm
Posts: 2831
And Yamin, the phone (and using it) will be good practice for school in Sept - I would swear by them having one (even if it is a house brick) for the inevitable "I've missed the bus".."my bus hasn't turned up"... "DOS has asked me to take part in an athletics comp after school...tonight..."....I've had all of those...and more!!! :?


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 Post subject: Re: Off on bikes alone
PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 2:34 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:56 pm
Posts: 1049
I would be happy to allow DS to cycle off on his own, as long as it is light, especially now. In Y5 he did his cycle proficiency and just after half term he did the next level of cycle proficiency at his gs. On the last day we were unable to pick him up and so made him cycle to his grandparents, which was the furthest he had cycled on his own. We are now trying to encourage him to cycle or catch the bus rather than using mum/dad taxi!

DD has cycled to the local shops on her own and when she gets the chance to have a go at the cycle proficiency we will encourage her. She is also more willing to cycle anywhere at the moment. But we are strict that they both wear helmets and hi-vis jackets as we feel it is better that they can be seen.


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