Teaching your toddler to ride a bike takes a lot of patience and practice, but the joy of seeing them explore this new method of getting around is so rewarding. If you’re teaching your child French, here are the basic French cycling terms that will come in handy.
What is “bicycle” in French?
There are two common ways of saying bicycle in French.
“To bike” in French is:
Faire du vélo
Faire de la bicyclette
Tricycle – tricycle (masculine)
Balance bike – draisienne (feminine), vélo d’équilibre (masculine)
After talking to many parents and doing our research, we decided to go with a balance bike. The one we picked is light and easy to assemble (no more than ten minutes). Its seat is easily adjustable without the need for any tools, and our child should be able to use it up to the age of 5!
But the most important reason we chose to go with a balance bike over a trike is that children who have experience using these types of bikes generally have an easier time transitioning to a regular bike later on. Since they have practice balancing on the bike while moving, they don’t need to use transition wheels and can, instead, make the switch more intuitively.
Parts of a bicycle in French
Handlebar – le guidon
Brake – le frein
Wheel – la roue
Tire – le pneu
Chain – la chaîne
Seat – la selle
Pedal – la pédale
Training wheel – la roue stabilisatrice
Bell – la sonnette
Basket – le panier
Bicycle-related nouns and verbs in French
Helmet – le casque, le casque de vélo
To pedal – pédaler
To accelerate – accélérer
To slow down – ralentir