Bikes for Kids

Do you remember your first bike?  Or even your tricycle?  Bicycles are an early taste of freedom and independence for children, and when your small, nothing beats going really fast! Parents will be happy that their kids are burning off steam and getting exercise. When you pick out a bike for your child, bear in mind their age, size, and preferences for colour and design.  And definitely, don't forget to have your child get a helmet ! Scrapes and scratches are part of childhood; head trauma should not be.

Bicycles are not cheap toys, and quality often goes up with price.  If you are pressed for cash but still want to get the best for your child, find out if there are buy-back programs in your area (check used bike shops), or even with the bike's manufacturers. That way, when your child outgrows his or her bike, you can afford to get a new one!

Tricycle 

  • Miniature-size bike with three wheels is perfect for the smallest cyclists.
  • Help a child learn the basic mechanics of riding a bike with the added safety and comfort of three wheels for extra balance.
  • Perfect for children ages 2-4.
  • A child from 28 to 38 inches tall or with a 14-17 inch inseam will need the smallest 12-inch wheel size.
  • Average cost: £30-£60

Alternative Training Bikes 

  • Several makers have designed sturdy two-wheelers especially for toddlers from age 2.
  • These bikes give the little 'uns a sense of balancing on a bicycle, and are supposed to teach kids to ride safely and without needing extra support wheels to transition.
  • The Like-A-Bike  and Islabikes Rothan or CNOC14 (sold only through the manufacturer's site) are good examples of these starter bikes for the 2-3 year old set.
  • Can cost £75-£130.

With Training Wheels

  • These are slightly bigger and some have removable stabilising wheels. The extra wheels may be sold separately. All have rear coaster brakes. Some have a hand brake. They are great because they grow with your child as he or she learns to ride a bike.
  • For children ages 4-6.
  • A child 38 to 48 inches tall with an 18-21 inch inseam will need 16" wheels.
  • Average cost: £100+

Mountain Bike 

  • Once your child has gotten a bit bigger they will need a bike with more adult features, more gear speeds, hand brakes, and a kick stand.
  • For 7-8 year olds (48 to 60 inches tall) stick to the 20" wheel models, and for 9 years and up go for the 24" models.
  • Prices start at £80, but the price boundaries appear limitless. More money will mean a better, lighter bike, but most people do have budget restrictions: don't fear, you will find an appropriate bike!

BMX 

  • They have a T-handlebar and usually only rear coaster brakes.
  • No matter how big the child gets, a BMX bike can always have its charm, especially if he or she gets into extreme sports.
  • There are three types: BMX racing  for normal kid stuff like riding around the block, BMX freestyle  with pegs and spinning handlebars for doing tricks, and BMX jumping bikes  with extra solid 48-spoke wheels.
  • Prices range from about £80-£200.