Recently, my daughter learned how to ride her trike. For a while, I would walk behind her and she would just rest her feet on the pedals.
Then for a while, she would use her feet to move the pedals, but sometimes her movements would cause the tricycle to go backward rather than forward.
Then for a while, instead of steering the trike, she would just pedal and go where she went. If the handle bars were not straight, she would sometimes travel in a diagonal or if the handle bars where too curved, she would travel in a circle.
That means she would often pick up the trike and have to move it back onto the driveway.
It has been fun to watch how she has improved to the point where she knows how to steer. She knows how to operate the pedals to move forward and backward. She chooses her destination and then goes for it.
As an adult, I think I still use this method when learning how to do a new task. First, I may not understand the importance of putting one foot in front of the other. But with time, I learn the difference between moving forward and moving backward.
I also learn that just moving is not as important as choosing where I want to go, making a plan to get there and then steering to where I want to go. That also means that sometimes it is necessary to pedal backwards, redirect and then go forward again.
I am not sure that is what people mean when they say, "you never forget how to ride a bike," but the process is one that can be essential in accomplishing tasks no matter what you want to do in life.