Proud parents everywhere normally ring in the new year by taking the kids to a park or beach promenade to try out their new bike. Those hairy moments when you’re giving them their first push, that warm glow as you watch them glide away: these are memories in the making.
However, kids need a whole lot more than encouragement when it comes to their first bike. Here’s some important pointers to remember when choosing a suitable set of wheels for your little one.
Trying Bikes On For Size
It’s always better to gradually progress with kids bikes when it comes to choosing the right size. As anyone with kids will be aware, young bodies grow as if they’ve been consuming magic beans.
It’s quite dangerous for them to ride on a bike that’s larger than their body size. So here’s a rough outline of bicycle wheel size versus age group:
Pre-school age: Below 16 inch wheels
4-6 year olds: 16 inch wheels
6-10 year olds: 20 inch wheels
9-12 year olds: 24 inch wheels
12 years and above: A smaller-sized adult bike should do the trick.
Remember that this is not set in stone, and you will need to take into account your child’s individual size and requirements.
Brake levers don’t really need to be made smaller for kids. Instead you could opt for a two-fingered adult lever that is placed close enough to the handle-bars for a child to reach it.
Test this out before buying or ensure that the brakes have an adjustment screw for easy modification. A quick adult test of kids bikes is by seeing if you can use the brakes with only the little finger on each hand.
If unsure about a bike you’re thinking of buying, check with an in-store assistant or look up online reviews and parent forums to determine whether it’s right for your child.
Taking the stabilisers off the bike is a moment heavy with metaphor. It symbolises a milestone for parents (letting go of the reins) and children (look mum, no hands!).
So long as you’ve done your research and are happy that you’ve chosen the best bike for your child, that moment will be one you’ll remember for a lifetime.