Transition to a Pedal Bike

Our focus is teaching kids to ride a bike with confindence and this includes a smooth and simple transition from a balance to pedal bike.


3 Simple Steps to Remember

1. Don't rush pedaling

Riding a balance bike is fun! Even if your child appears to be riding like a pro and has mastered the fundamentals of a balance bike, moving to a pedal bike too soon can derail progress and discourage your child. The weight of a pedal bike is significantly more (sometimes three to four times the weight of a balance bike), and handling that extra weight can be very difficult and frustrating to a child. Let them practice, play and perfect their balance and bike handling skills while having fun on their balance bike. Be confident that all time spent on a balance bike will only make them more proficient on a pedal bike the day they decide to transition.

2. Never ever use training wheels

Training wheels are not a solution to learning to rider bike since they don’t really train anything. When you child is learning to ride a bike with pedals, the most important skill they need to learn is balance. When you feel your child is ready to pedal, we recommend finding the simplest, lightest pedal bike possible. Try avoiding "bells and whistles" as they all add weight and distraction. We recommend that pedal bikes have a freewheel hub and a hand brake. Do not buy a bike for your child to "grow into". A bike that is too large won't fit properly, will be too heavy, potentially unsafe, and can ultimately discourage your child. With the seat at its lowest setting your child should be able to touch the ground flat footed. Brands like Prevelo have put in the research and engineered some truly extraordinary light weight 14" and 16" bikes that fit the geometry of young children, started as early as 3 years of age.

3. Keep it fun

Putting kids on a pedal bike too soon will limit where they can go. It is much harder to ride a pedal bike on grass, dirt, or over obstacles than it is on a balance bike. Keep in mind how important fun and adventure are to a kid. A lightweight balance bike has a "fun factor" simply not available on a heavy pedal bike at a young age. We recommend having both the balance bike and the pedal bike available to the child so they can choose which they prefer on a given day. This overlap can last up to at least a year. At some point of the child's choosing, as they get taller, stronger, more skilled, and confident they will complete their transition to a pedal bike.

Choosing a Pedal Bike for your Child

Children bicycles come in a variety of different shapes and sizes, but the trouble is finding which bike is right for your young rider. At JumpStartBikes, our focus is teaching kids to ride a bike with confindence at an early age.

Name Brand Type Price Ages Size Inseam Weight Material Range Info
14x Sport 2-in-1 Strider Pedal BikePedal 189.99 3-6 / 4-8 14 16" - 23" 15 LBS Steel Mid-Range more »
LB 2-in-1 LittleBig Pedal BikePedal 349.95 2-4 / 3-6 14 14.5" - 23" 11.2 LBS Aluminum Upper-Range more »
LB 2-in-1 LittleBig Pedal BikePedal 349.95 2-4 / 3-6 14 14.5" - 23" 11.2 LBS Aluminum Upper-Range more »
Alpha One Prevelo Pedal BikePedal 359.00 2-4 / 3-6 14 13" - 18.5" 14.4 LBS Aluminum Premium more »
Zulu One Prevelo Pedal BikePedal 459.00 2-4 / 3-6 14 16.5" - 26" 15.9 LBS Aluminum Premium more »
Woom 2 Woom Pedal BikePedal 339.00 2-4 / 3-6 14 16.5" - 20.5" 12.3 LBS Aluminum Premium more »
Zulu Two HEIR Prevelo Pedal BikePedal 799.00 3-6 / 4-8 16 18.5" - 26" 17.9 LBS Aluminum Premium more »
Alpha Two Prevelo Pedal BikePedal 369.00 3-6 / 4-8 16 16" - 27.5" 14.9 LBS Aluminum Premium more »
Belter 16 Early-Rider Pedal BikePedal 439.00 3-6 / 4-8 16 20" - 24.5" 13.7 LBS Aluminum Premium more »
Alpha Three Prevelo Pedal BikePedal 499.00 4-8 / 6-12 20 21" - " 18.9 LBS Aluminum Premium more »

Children Bike Sizes choosing a bike by wheel size

Balance Bikes

12-inchages 2-5

Balance Bikes

14-inchages 3-6

Balance Bikes

16-inchages 4-7

Balance Bikes

20-inchages 6+


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