zippizap ZZ02There are few childhood purchases as important and fulfilling as the purchase of your child’s first bike. We want them to be perfect, safe and fun, and we want our children to be able to enjoy them as they grow. Trying to find a bike that meets this description, however, can be frustrating. They all seem too heavy, too big or too small, and they don’t grow with your child. Add in the choice between getting training wheels or not, color, brand and speed settings, and it can become overwhelming in the store.
However, there’s another option that’s gaining popularity worldwide: balance bikes. Balance bikes are quickly becoming a go-to choice for teaching kids to ride a bike, without the use of training wheels. Balance bikes are designed for younger children, lighter an easier to manoeuver than traditional kid’s bikes. However, despite their smaller, lighter frames, they are designed to grow with your children. Balance bikes can be used by kids from 18 months to grade school.
The main difference between a “regular” bike and a balance bike is the presence of pedals. Balance bikes are pedal less so that your child can focus on the most difficult aspect of bike riding: balancing. There are many other benefits to the lack of pedals on a balance bike, though. The pedals can’t cause your child an injury by hitting their legs or causing them to fall when they slip, and you can push your child on the balance bike while they put their feet up comfortably on the foot rest.
Because balance bikes teach your child to use their feet to propel themselves and stop the bike if they need to, they build confidence and decision making skills, and the act of balancing their weight builds upper body strength. They are easier to store, because they don’t have all the appendages of a “regular” bike, and that means kids get less frustrated trying to put them away.
All in all, balance bikes have good reason for their increase in popularity among parents as a first bike for their children. Though it can be difficult to adjust to the idea of no-pedal biking, it could be the best way to teach your child how to ride