Tips for choosing your child’s first bike!
To combine pleasure and safety, it is important to choose the bike most appropriate to your child’s needs!
Above all, a child must know how to walk well! The musculature must be sufficiently developed so that it can have the strength to pedal, that is to say at the age of about two years. His first bike will, therefore, be a tricycle: enough to give him the habit of coordinating the action of his legs and to hold the handlebars well. You can also opt for the bicycle without pedals that can teach him to balance before starting on the version above. From 3 years, the child can drive on a “real” bike, initially with the wheels of course.
To prevent the risk of falling, it is important to choose your bike.
- It must bear the CE mark which indicates its conformity with the European safety standards in force.
- It must be adapted to the size of the small cyclist.
- It must have a little frame so that the child can easily climb over it. Sitting on the saddle, the young cyclist must reach the pedals without difficulty and be able to put his feet flat on the ground.
- It will have a half-raised handlebar, easier to hold. It will be thick enough to be stable.
For smaller children who do not yet know how to operate manual brakes, the bicycle must have a fixed pinion system or a backpedal system. Then you can choose a model with soft brakes and a freewheel system so your child can stop pedaling downhill. Also, make sure that a protective cover prevents small hands from accessing the chain. Otherwise, get a trouser tie to keep it from rolling up in the bike tray! Adjusting the height of the seat and handlebars must be comfortable and efficient. The bicycle will be equipped with a bell or even a lighting system.
To begin, the stabilizing wheels will allow your child to enjoy the pleasure of riding a bike. Many models exist, for all ages and with different functions. Some types of suspension wheels are suspended, this innovation allows children to learn better to manage their balance while being in maximum safety. Other models, for those who still lack a little confidence but are about to “let go of the wheels,” allow to fold the wheels.
When your child’s knees hit the handlebar with each pedal stroke or when the legs are too bent despite a fully raised saddle, it is a sign that it is time to change the bike.
To drive safely, do not neglect the equipment of the small pedal. When a child falls, it falls on the head in half of the cases. Wearing helmets reduces the risk of head injuries in more than 80% of cases. The helmet must be EC-approved, it must go low enough to the rear of the skull, and once it has been adjusted, it must not move.
After a shock, it is mandatory to change the helmet even if it does not show any visible damage. Your child will be more visible with a colored helmet and reflectors. The equipment may be supplemented by knee pads and elbow pads.
For your child to ride safely, check the overall condition of the bike, the proper operation of the brakes and the tightening of the wheels, handlebars, and saddle. Finally, never allow the child to cycle unattended.
The cycling practice allows the child to overcome his fears at first than to persevere. At first, hold it by the waist and then stay by his side to reassure him. Then, your encouragement will be welcome for its progression. On the other hand, if he is not interested, it is unnecessary to insist too much on pain of disgusting him. The bicycle will learn to empower the puzzles and give confidence to the timidest. Moreover, then quickly tell your child that the bike is green: it is better for the planet to get the bread by bicycle than by car!
Here are the recommended bike sizes for your age (inches sizes):
- 2 to 3 years (80-100 cm): bike 12 inches (wheels 12 “)
- From 3 years to 5 years (90 -105 cm): 14 “bike (14” wheels)
- From 4 years to 7 years (105-120 cm): 16-inch bike (wheels 16 “)
- From 7 years to 11 years old (120-135 cm): 20-inch bike (Wheels 20 “)
- From 8 years (135-155 cm): 24″ bike (24 “wheels) –
- For mountain biking, from 135 cm, a 24″ bike is recommended
To help you find yourself in the tire sizes do not hesitate to use the Cycle converter table.
Caution: Too large a bike or a saddle too high can cause back problems.