7 STEPS TO BUYING A BALANCE BIKE
Balance Bikes are now a proven product to enhance your child’s core stability, cognitive skills and early years development. Having spent the last 15 years manufacturing, testing and enhancing balance bikes we at Kiddimoto believe we’re in a great position to provide you the ultimate guide to choosing your child’s balance bike.
1. How old does my child have to be?
As soon as your child can walk on their own then they are old enough to start riding. 18 months – 2 years tends to be the age that a child is ready to start riding their very first balance bike. However, it will depend on your child’s development. Most balance bikes out there are suitable for ages up to 5 years old and can be adjusted if your child isn’t quite ready to make the jump up to a pedal bike.
2. Metal or wood? Which do I choose?
Wood or metal balance bikes – both have great benefits, traditional wooden balance bikes have more surface area to create awesome design work which is obviously very appealing for a little one. We use birch plywood from sustainable forests to build ours. When looked after properly they are very sturdy and reliable, however they do tend not to be as adjustable compared to metal. We use various different metals in our balance bike range, aluminum, steel and even carbon. This can have an effect on the overall weight, however they are very durable and can survive all the bumps and grazes that are expected.
3. Does shape really matter?
Absolutely! Most balance bike brands will have a reason as to why they have made their bike a certain shape, again this all depends on your child’s size and ability. In some cases there are balance bikes where the seat is too close to the handlebars and too far away from the back wheel, this will lead to poor posture and an unpleasant experience.
4. How heavy should a balance bike be?
As a general rule you don’t want your child’s bike to weigh any more than 25%- 30% of their own body weight. For example if your child weighs 15kg then the maximum weight the bike should be is 4kg. This will be important when it comes to selecting the right bike for your toddler. You want your child to be able to control and move the bike on their own.
5. Does my child really need brakes?
If you are looking for a balance bike for a 2-3 year old then a brake can sometimes be an added distraction when it comes to learning the art of balancing. However if your child is 3-5 years old and is an experienced rider then it will really help introducing a brake to them before they move onto a pedal bike. In short, you don’t want the process of riding a balance bike to be complicated, it should be an enjoyable and educational activity.
6. Does it really matter what tyres my child’s bike has?
Yes, it does matter. Although you may tempted by the weight or cost of a bike it is really important that your child is comfortable when they are riding. Avoid plastic tires, they can crack easily and can be very uncomfortable which may result in one very unhappy little one. No one wants that. A popular choice for tires are a foam EVA option, these tires wont crack and are actually puncture resistant meaning your child’s fun isn’t cut short. The second option is for the more adventurous toddler, pneumatic tires can be pumped up and are great across almost every terrain.
7. How long will a balance bike last?
The answer to this question will vary dependent on what balance bike you choose. Different brands will say different things, we at Kiddimoto believe that good quality balance bikes should last 10 years+ that’s we include a 10 year warranty across our whole range! Our bikes are usually passed down to siblings once they have been outgrown.
One last thing, whichever bike you choose make sure the whole experience is enjoyable and safe for your child. Riding a balance bike can be a challenge at first but the benefits of learning to ride one will be so rewarding in the long run for you and your little boy or girl. If you’re in the market for a balance bike or helmet head over to our shop to select and the perfect balance bike for your toddler.