Choosing a bicycle for your child that is age appropriate, well designed, and reasonably priced can be daunting at times. When you know your little one has mastered the tricycle and is ready to move up to the next size ride, a two-wheeled bicycle with training wheels is a great way to go.
There are so many different styles of bikes available that you will be sure to find one that fits your child’s individual personality. Whether they like a Princess theme, some Spider-Man adventures, or just a good old Red Flyer bike, there’s a style for every child.
As a parent, it’s important when choosing a bicycle that you choose one that is both age and size appropriate and will be with your child for at least a year if not more. These are a few tips that help your shopping experience run a little smoother:
- While the size of an adult bicycle is measured by seat height and frame size, a children’s bicycle size is determined by the size of the wheel diameter.
- Common sizes in children’s bicycles with training wheels are 12″, 16″, 20″, and 24″. The bicycle should fit your child comfortably and they should be able to mount and dismount comfortably. They should also be able to straddle the bike with their feet comfortably on the ground. If your child is riding their new bike with their knees hitting the handlebars or is stretched out and having trouble reaching the handlebars then the bike is the wrong size.
- Heavier bikes that are made of steel are generally less expensive then the lighter bikes that are made with alloy metals. Your child will have an easier time pedaling with the lighter rides.
- When choosing a bicycle for beginner riders the braking mechanism is very important. Your child will need to have control of their bike in order to gain the confidence that they’ll need to eventually ride without the training wheels. Younger children will benefit from bikes that have coaster brakes, which are rear brakes, that are engaged by pedaling backward. Little hands can have difficulty gripping hand brakes and oftentimes don’t have the strength necessary to operate them.
- The frame of the bicycle should be strong enough to handle some abuse and you should not be able to bend it by hand. Chains can be dangerous and can grab your child’s shoe laces or pant legs, causing a safety issue. Be sure that the bicycle that you choose has a chain guard to prevent accidents.
- The training wheels themselves should be well made and sturdy. You should not be able to bend them and they should be securely fastened. The bike may wobble just a slight bit while your child is learning how to ride but not enough to upset and unbalance the rider.
Last but not least, review the manufacture age recommendations when choosing a bicycle for your little ones. If your child is a little larger or a little smaller than the average 3, 4, or 5 year old then adjust your requirements a little bit to accommodate. Manufacturer recommendations are not written in stone, they are a guideline to help you make the best decision possible.
If you’re choosing a bicycle to buy this year then be sure to take a moment and let us know which bike you choose, and enjoy watching your little ones learn how to ride!
Originally posted 2010-05-31 16:20:50. Republished by Blog Post Promoter