Beginner Biking FAQ
Do I need my own bike?
Each student will be provided with an Explore Bike Share bicycle to use during the lesson. You can bring your own bike if you want. Any personal bike brought to the class must be in good working order: make sure the wheels spin, tires are inflated, brakes are working, chain is oiled, and the bike fits you.
Do I need my own helmet?
No, each student will be provided with a helmet. You can also bring your own if you already have a helmet.
What should I wear?
Wear comfortable clothing that you can move around in. We recommend workout leggings or shorts and a t-shirt. Wear close-toed shoes such as sneakers. No sandals!
What should I bring?
We recommend bringing water, a cloth or towel for sweat, a snack, sunglasses, sunscreen, and anything else you might need to be comfortable. The lessons are held outdoors, so expect it to be hot, although we’ll take breaks in the shade.
What should I expect?
The lesson is 2-hours long, and we break it down to make each part easy to learn.
We start the lesson by taking the pedals off the bike. You begin by walking next to the bike and then walking while straddling the bike. Walking with your bike makes you comfortable with the bike’s weight and helps familiarize you with the brakes and handlebars.
Next, you’ll be seated on the bike, and you’ll keep your feet on the ground as you “scoot” around and start to learn what your center of balance feels like. Then, as you get more comfortable, you’ll be able to pick up your feet and coast for a few seconds.
After you’ve been coasting for a while, we’ll add one pedal to the bike, and you’ll learn how to start moving by pushing down on the pedal. You’ll connect this movement with the coasting you already learned.
Finally, we’ll add the second pedal, and you’ll connect all the previous actions to start riding the bike! At this point, you’ll be pedaling, and we’ll work on incorporating wide, easy turns and stopping gracefully.
Will I actually learn to ride a bike?
Most people learn to ride in one lesson. For those who don’t, they’ll have the skills to keep practicing on their own and can register to take another free class.
How do I register, and what happens next?
Fill out this registration form, and then we will contact you to confirm your lesson date and location. You are not assigned to a lesson until you get that confirmation from us. If lessons are fully booked, we’ll add you to the waitlist!
Can you fix my bike if I bring it to the lesson?
No, we are not trained mechanics, but we can recommend some great local bike shops that do repairs!
Will I have to ride in traffic?
The lesson will be hosted off the street, and we will not be near car traffic.
Is it free?
The class is absolutely free!
Is there a weather cancellation policy?
If the weather is bad, we’ll contact you before the lesson to let you know if we are rescheduling. We may still hold lessons if there is a chance of rain, but in an active rainstorm, we will not hold lessons.
I can no longer attend my lesson; what should I do?
Contact us immediately so we can give your spot to someone on the waitlist!
Can you teach my child/nephew/niece/cousin/ little brother/sister to ride a bike?
At this time, we cannot teach anyone under the age of 18.
Now that I know how to bike, where should I ride?
Check out the City of Memphis Bike Map to find streets with bike lanes. Explore Bike Share hosts group bike rides this summer with their Freewheel Ride series, and other local groups hosting rides like the Memphis Hightailers, Memphis Social Bicycle Club, Black Girls Do Bike, and more. Reach out to us for more help finding rides!