We had been told by some friends when our son was only about four-months old that a balance bike is a MUST for little kids. It seemed to far away to consider at the time, but as soon as my tyke was walking well, we started exploring options. Our friends had said they’d choose a balance bike again, given the choice of training wheels or not. So, we asked around and more often than not, Strider was recommended. Since balance bikes are becoming very popular in the kiddo biking arena, there are quite a few other options available, but Strider is certainly a brand we would suggest in this family!
We decided when my son was about 23 months old to give it a try. I feel like we missed the ‘perfect window of opportunity’ for him, since he was cognizant enough to know that mom and dad have pedals and other bicycles that we’ve let him use and sit on have pedals. He started out by kind of just walking with a bike between his legs. He wasn’t having a terrible time, but he wasn’t ‘taking to it’ like I thought he would. I was really bummed. Part of teaching a child to ride ANY bike is patience and realistic expectations. So I remained as positive as I could, knowing he’d get there. And, get there he did. It took longer than some kiddos (we have to plan around mother nature) and so when winter hit, our practice went on hiatus.
The Strider ST-4 is so great for traveling (just throw it in the back of the car) and it was super lightweight, so I can easily load and unload it myself. I do not have the worry of being super bike savvy or carrying tools to change the seat height (customizable, able to grow with your child) and the ST-4 is built for kids his age. He loves having his very own bicycle, but I think he too was disappointed at first that he wasn’t rocketing around like a BMX pro. One day it just clicks. Keep at it. The more time and practice in the saddle, the better. It will happen overnight, when it does, be ready to give chase, kids cruise on balance bikes!
We loved that there are several different models and colors (and even branded bikes to make your kids feel really cool – Honda, Yamaha, etc.) We also adore the fact that it CAN mean that kids won’t ever need training wheels since they develop great balance and can jump straight to big-kid bikes.
Strider Bikes have a crazy cool add-on for winter: skis! Seriously. Strider Bikes can be converted to Strider Snow Bikes with a $29.00 add-on accessory ski kit. We have not yet tried this but it is something I hope to find for my bike and partake in a whole new winter family sport!
Note: You and your family should all have good biking helmets. Saftey first! We can recommend a great kids helmet here.
Disclosure: We received a Strider ST-4 to facilitate a test drive. Our opinions are our own and we are totally balance bike advocates now!
“Note: This article contains affiliate amazon links.”
updated: March 30 2014 by will1494