Things You Need to Know Before Buying a Kid’s Bike

Buying a Kid’s bike in 2021? Don’t know what to look for in a kid’s bike? We have your back!

Children will enjoy almost any bike because they’re more in love with the freedom biking brings. If you don’t want the bike to sit in the corner alongside the guitar you got them last Christmas, getting them a good bike is important so that they keep using it even after the thrill of having a new bike fades. 

Manufacturers classify their kid’s bike sizes on the basis of wheel size.

However, you have to think more than just about the wheel size while buying your kid their first bike. From finding the right size to choosing the right type of bike for your kid, our kid’s bike buying guide has it all covered. 

Bikes for kids
Two kids cycling

Kids Bike Buying Guide – Things to Keep in Mind

Finding a bike for your child is not an easy task. However, by following this kid’s bike buying guide, you’ll be able to find a bike that not only looks good but is lightweight so that your child can lift it easily and sturdy that it can be passed down to your younger kids. 

Find a Lightweight Option

Bikes can be difficult for a child to maneuver. Therefore, it’s important to look for a lightweight bike that your child can easily lift. 

A heavy bike not only makes it difficult for the child to lift it but is also hard to paddle well. Not just the design of the bike makes it heavy, but the material of the frame plays an important role too.

A general rule of thumb is the child’s bike should be less than 40% of their weight. Even a few pounds can make a huge difference. Therefore, it’s important to compare lightweight kids bikes available in the market. 

A bonus tip: When looking for a bike for your child, it’s important to choose the one with a chainguard as they reduce the chances of injuries, keeping your child safe.

Kids bike buying guide, things to look for in a kid’s bike

Choose the Right Type 

To buy the right bike for your child, it’s important to understand the type of cycling your child is into. If their plan is to cycle on the road, don’t make the wrong decision of buying a mountain bike.

You can get them a hybrid bike if they are interested in different types of cycling.

If your kid is really young, even a trailer cycle will do. Similarly, if your kid plans to spend their day doing tricks at the park, you should get them a BMX bike/ 

Be on the Lookout for Training Wheels, Bike Stands, and Accessories

One of the most important things to look for in a kid’s bike is the additional accessories it comes with. 

If you don’t want to spend extra bucks on training wheels, stabilizers, reflectors, bike stands, and other accessories like helmets, gloves, and pads, search for a bike that comes with all the necessary accessories.

However, if you have promised your kid to buy them a cute water bottle or spokey dokeys, then you really are on your own.  

Don’t Be on the Lookout for Something Cheap

Cheap doesn’t always mean good quality. Many parents look for cheaper options because they understand that their child will outgrow the cycle in a few months anyway. However, it’s kids we’re talking about.

A cheap bike will break down every now and then, costing you more money in the longer run.

Poor quality build is the primary reason you shouldn’t be looking at cheaper options. Where a cheap bike would break down and get abandoned, a sturdy, high-quality bike will be passed down to your other kids.  

Find the Right Size

Unlike adult bikes, where the length of the seat tube determines the frame size, kids’ bikes sizes are based on wheel diameter. 

The guide below should let you know what size wheels you should be looking for. 

Wheel SizeAgeHeight 
12″2 – 3 years36 – 39″
14″2 – 4 years37 – 44″
16″4 – 6 years41 – 48″
20″5 – 8 years45 – 54″
24″8 – 11 years49″ – 59″
26″10 + years56″ +

The chart might not be 100% accurate because every child grows up on their own timeline. However, it’s a simple guide that you can follow to search for a bike for your child. Many parents buy a size or two larger so that they can grow into it.

However, a larger-sized bike can be difficult for your child to handle and is not safe, too. If your child is able to comfortably grip the handlebars of the bike without fully extending their arms, pat yourself on the back. 

Height also plays a vital role in choosing the right bike. If you choose a bike that is too big for them, their feet won’t be able to reach the ground when idle. A bigger bike also can make it difficult for them to paddle. 

Similarly, choosing a bike that is smaller for your child is a problem too. A smaller-sized bike can hurt their knees while pedaling due to them touching against the handlebars.

Additionally, the smaller the bike frame, the harder it will be for them to balance. 

Settle on the One with the Perfect Seat Height

After you figure out the bike size, it’s time to bring into consideration your child’s riding ability. 

  • If your child is a beginner rider, they should have their feet flat on the ground when they sit on the bike. 
  • If your child is experienced, their tiptoes should touch the ground when they sit on the bike.
  • If your child plans to use training wheels, both tiptoes or flat feet work. 

Final Thoughts

Buying your child their first bike is as exciting for the parents as it is for the kid. Your job isn’t only to find them the right bike, it’s also to make sure that they wear a properly-fitted helmet and understand bike safety rules. 

Considering that there are so many things to look for in a kid’s bike, it’s not uncommon for parents to feel a little overwhelmed.

However, if you want your child to adopt healthy habits, it’s important to look for a bike that is the perfect size, not too heavy, and the right type. 

Julie Higgins
Author
Julie is a Staff Writer at momooze.com. She has been working in publishing houses before joining the editorial team at momooze. Julie's love and passion are topics around beauty, lifestyle, hair and nails.