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Bicycle in French: vocabulary for kids

bicycle in french main image

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.

Vélo (masculine)

Bicyclette (feminine)

To bike” in French is:

Faire du vélo

Faire de la bicyclette

We were debating between a tricycle and a balance bike for our little one. Balance bikes are no-pedal bicycles that help young kids learn to balance and steer while in motion.

Tricycle – tricycle (masculine)

Balance bike – draisienne (feminine), vélo d’équilibre (masculine)

vélo d’équilibre

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

parts of a bicycle in french - training wheels

Bell – la sonnette

Basket – le panier

Bicycle-related nouns and verbs in French

Helmet – le casque, le casque de vélo

le casque
le casque de vélo

To pedal – pédaler

To accelerate – accélérer

To slow down – ralentir

Related: Spring French resources for kids

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