Learning to ride a bike provides your child with a precious skill that will last a lifetime. With children spending more and more time indoors, there’s really no better way to get them outside and excited than teaching them to ride a bike. Not to mention the fact that they’ll get to spend some quality time with their family in the process. Once fully fledged they’ll feel independent and less inclined to hibernate in their room whilst glued to any computer device they can get their hands on. Teaching your child to ride a bike will be easy and enjoyable but with such a huge range of kids bikes on the market, parents can do with a little helping hand when it comes to selecting the perfect beginner’s bike for their child. Here’s what to consider before taking the plunge and purchasing that perfect bike.
You’d think choosing a kids bike for your child would be easy but there’s a lot of different factors to consider and age is just one of them. Did you realise that you can support your child to develop the fundamentals of bike riding before they’re even 2 years old? We all picture the classic shiny frame with trainer wheels and streamers on the handlebars when we think about our child’s first cycling lesson, but this is 2020 and times have changed. Investing in a balance bike for your child from 18+ months is a great way to help them learn the basics of riding before they even start. Balance bikes have no pedals and rely on the child to push them along with their feet. They’ll develop their balance and gross motor skills; the perfect introduction to cycling and innovative way to spark their love for riding.
Lot’s of parents realise just how fast their children develop and mature and, understandably, think that the best option is to choose a bike that they will ‘grow into’. They’ll get more use out of it this way, right? Well, unfortunately, this could actually hinder your child’s ability to learn how to ride their bike and even be dangerous as a bike’s weight increases along with its size. This will make it difficult to maneuver and could cause injury should it fall on them. Unlike adult bikes, kids bikes are measured by their wheel size and not their frame so this should be considered when selecting the ideal bike. The best way to tell if the bike is the right size for your child it to get them to try it out and use a bike size guide. If they can stand comfortably over the bike with both their feet flat on the floor you’re onto a good start. They also need to be able to use the pedals and handlebars easily when seated. Also, remember that most bikes have adjustable seats so use the trial and error method so see which seat height suits them best.
Style and Safety
We mentioned the classic image of your child’s first bike earlier with the shiny frame, small black training wheels and sparkly streamers on the handlebars but this will be a far cry from you’ll see on the market today. There are kids bikes with chunky round wheels that resemble a BMX and light pink frames with white wheels and a basket on the front. Be sure to choose a style of bike that matches your child’s personality, there will definitely be one out there. Finally, before they hit the road you’ll also need to consider protective equipment. Buying a helmet and visibility aids are essential and will get your child into good habits right from the get-go. When it comes to bike safety, you want to make sure your little one is protected.
Now you know everything you need to know before heading out and making the perfect purchase. It might also be a good idea to understand what they want before you wheel in their new bike. Just take into account your child’s age, size and style and you’ll have one happy and safe child.