Choosing a proper fit on a balance bike requires a couple simple measurement; their inseam and weight.
After you have your child's inseam measurement, check the bike's specifications of minimum seat height. If your inseam measurement is equal or greater than the minimum seat height, the bike will be a good fit. It's ideal to purchase a bike with a maximum seat height of at least 2″ above the child’s current inseam. Check out our sizing chart.
Follow the "Rule of 30" when selecting a balance bike. A balance bike should weigh no more than 30% of your child’s weight. An easy way to determine this is to follow a simple calculation: (child's weight) x (0.3) = (max bike weight). For example, if a child weighs 30 lbs and we calculate this by the "Rule of 30" then their balance bike should weigh no more than 9 lbs.
Some discretion can be used for kids who are very athletic and adventurous, and an extra pound of bike is easily managed. For timid and/or shy types a slightly lighter bike will be more successful.
When choosing a balance bike for your little rider it's always important to choose the correct size. Not choosing the right size can frustrate your child and inhibited their ability to learn. It can also be dangerous. Most likely it's their first bike and we highly recommend that you purchase a bike that fits them now, not one that they will grow into. This also applies to pedal bikes. We strongly recommend reviewing our sizing chart.
Yes. If your child is proficiently walking, your child can absolutely ride a balance bike. Many children as young as 18 months have found great success with the 10" and 12" models due to the perfect combination of low seat height, low center-of-gravity, and light weight features.
While there are pros and cons to steering limiters, the overall effect they have on riding is minor and their presence shouldn't be a determining factor in your purchase.
A steering limiter prevents the bike from jack-knifing. It keeps the handlebar and front wheel from completing a full revolution. Proponents of the turning limiter claim that bikes are safer with them as it prevents sharp turns, limits injuries during a fall and prevents the brake cables from becoming twisted. Adversaries claim that the steering limiter keeps the handlebars from being able to fold flat to the ground in the event of a fall and potentially impaling the child in the face, neck or chest. Some believe a child should be exposed to the full range of steering from the get-go and steering limiters are basically "training wheels" for handlebars.
Yes and no. This is a very common question we receive from parents. It's truely boils down to personal preference, but we like to point out that a bike with brakes is safer than without, especially when children ride with bare feet and when riding in areas that have steep downward inclines. Additionally, it's a great opportunity to use this experience to introduce children to the advanced hand motor skills necessary for successful bike riding in the future. If you've found a bike that you're in love with and it doesn't have brakes but offers features or components that are superior, then buy it with confidence. Just avoid steep grades, always wear rubber sole shoes, and never leave your child unsupervised, especially on sidewalks that are populated with driveways.
Assembly is very basic and in most cases it takes approximately 10 minutes or less and requires minimal to no tools. You'll find the bike assembly to be simple and straightforward. To make sure there are no hiccups, we've put together a group of video tuturials demonstrating the step-by-step bike assembly process.
We would also like to note that pedal bikes may require more extensive assembly steps. If you are uncomfortable with the idea of assembling your bike, any local bike shop can assist you for a small nominal fee.
Once your child has skillfully mastered the fundamentals of balance, leaning and steering they'll be ready for their first pedal bike. Keep in mind how important fun and adventure are to a child. A lightweight balance bike has a "fun factor" simply not available on a heavier pedal bike at a young age. During their transition to a pedal bike we recommend having both the balance bike and the pedal bike available to the child so they can choose which they prefer on any given day. This overlap can last up to 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.
There are no federal laws in the U.S. requiring bicycle helmets. But, beginning in 1987 states and localities began adopting their own helmet laws, mostly limited to children under the age of 18. We recommend reviewing your local bike helmet laws.
With that said, we believe strongly that a child should always wear a helmet while riding a bike. True safety while cycling depends upon teaching your child safe riding habits, developing advanced riding skills, and always being alert and aware of what is going on nearby. Definitely buy that helmet and enforce it's use, but please understand that safety features and helmets do not replace a parent's obligation to actively teach and supervise their little rider at all times.