It's that time of the year again where we're busy sending your kids bikes off to the north pole, just in time for the special day. So, this year we thought we'd help out a bit in the decision-making process. 

In this blog, we're going to look at what makes a great kid's bike? We know that kids grow so quickly and you're probably thinking why spend the extra on a bike now, why not wait and spend more when they slow down or stop growing? 

Well, today we are going to look at all the factors that help make those decisions a little easier. The main factors that we are going to look at and break down are, type of bike, weight, size, and finally kid-friendly specifics. 

Firstly, looking at the types of kid's bikes, Starting with the balance bike. The balance bike is the gateway to cycling, one of the easiest ways of getting your little one confident on two wheels is the balance bike, and having a starting age at around 12 months up

Balance bikes allow your child to learn at their own pace, building both their confidence and handling skills on a bike one step at a time. One moment you're walking in the park with them wandering behind the next they are zooming past you with their feet off the floor. Balance bikes really are one of the most intuitive ways to get your kids onto bikes. 

Balance bikes Typically come with a single rear brake lever allowing the development of basic bike handling skills and have child-specific features such as shorter and thinner handlebars for smaller kids. 

The next bike in the line is the first pedal bike, this is your child's first step into the world of a pedal-powered bike. These bikes are typically single speed meaning they only have one gear making the bike as simple as possible, however one step above the balance bike we see both a front and rear brake lever. They are also able to be equipped with stabilizers for that extra boost of confidence on the transition, or one of our favorites is to remove the pedals and cranks to create a balance bike again for that transition to a larger frame or even for those little ones that don't quite fit the balance bikes.  

Finally, we've got the geared bikes, at this point your child is ready and raring to hit the road, trails, or local park and just need that extra bit of assistance, welcome to the world of gears allowing for more flexible riding, making hills easier and flats faster. Commonly kid's first geared bikes will come with just a derailleur on the rear of the bike a single cog on the front leading to both reliability and simplicity. We also start to see a wider range of bikes at this level also so whether your little one wants to hit the trails or the road, there's a bike for them.  

Now let's look at some general points for buying the right bike for your child. Firstly, let's take a look at sizing.

Getting the correct sized bike is one of the most important factors when looking to build confidence, a bike that is too small is as difficult to ride as a bike that is too big. There is no one size fits all for kids' bikes, we don't look determine the correct size bike on age as every child is different. 

Some of the first questions our team will ask is ‘what are they riding at the moment?’ and ‘how confident are they?’ – the answer to these questions along with their height will allow us to help you choose the right size bike.

This is why all of the brands we stock have a great range of bike sizes in every category, a fluid bike range means you can find the bike that best fits your child. 

The next key component of any kid's bike is the weight, when you compare an adult's bike to an adult there is a huge difference in the rider's weight to the bike weight however sadly we can see that that's not often the case with kids bikes where the bikes can sometimes weigh more than the child riding it, now imagine trying to ride a bike the same weight as yourself. Seems pretty hard right? This is why kids' bike weight is so important for helping your child learn. For example, an average 5-year-old child weighs about 18.5Kg an unbranded "Kids Learning bike" weighs in at 11Kg whereas a frog 44 comes in at 6.79Kg now to put that into perspective that's like an average adult riding around on a 130Kg bike. That's not going to be fun or easy to ride!  

Finally, one of our favorite parts about kids bikes and especially the ones we stock is the kid-friendly specifics. These range from smaller sized brake levers and shifters all the way to thinner grips and a smaller saddle, all making your child's experience on the bike more enjoyable and safer.   

We understand that a high-quality kids' bike comes with a cost however we see it as an investment into your child's development, the extra spent on a lighter, more child-specific kids bike means more time on the bike for them, more enjoyment, and a safer riding experience. 

Christmas is just around the corner and as we all know it’s a busy time for all, if your looking to get your little one a new bike please pop in-to our stores and our team will be happy to help. 

Plus with our Christmas Club, you can reserve a bike with a 10% deposit and we will hold it up until the big day, so no need to keep it hidden in the cupboard!