Balance Bike for 2yr OId

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  • Balance Bike for 2yr OId
  • skybluestu
    Member

    Any suggestions out there from people with kids.

    i want to get her an early start cycling and am keen to see if anyone has got any that have been good/bad…

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    we’ve gone the Islabikes route.
    http://www.islabikes.co.uk/
    Starting with the rothan and then into the Cnoc. Stoner Jr was pedalling at 4 and his younger brother might just beat him since he has the seasons in his favour. Now looking to get him a Beinn.

    Theyre expensive but the s/h prices on eBay make it work when selling them on again.

    bigdaddy
    Member

    We had the Spesh Hotwalk – ace bike, my son got it for his 2nd birthday and never looked back, now he’s 6 and rides loads having never been on a bike with stabilizers.

    Rickos
    Member

    We got the Islabikes Rothan for our first boys 2nd birthday. He’s now coming up to 3 1/2 and he’s champing at the bit to get a bike with pedals. He’s good with the back brake now too (skids in the woods at the weekend), so I’d recommend one with a brake just so the next step up doesn’t involve too many things to think about as they’ve got the braking thing already sorted.

    My lad had this for his 2nd birthday, has done himn proud

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Models.aspx?ModelID=21476

    KINGTUT
    Member

    Funnily enough, we are just looking into this for my soon to be 2 year old daughter, we have settled on a Strider Bikes ST3 which has the right combination of size, cost and quality.

    reggiegasket
    Member

    Rothan, Hotwalk, or if you’re feeling flush, the Kokua. All good.

    Even if they look initially expensive, the re-sale value is high so the actual cost of ownership is fairly low.

    Premier Icon mintimperial
    Subscriber

    I’d recommend one with a brake just so the next step up doesn’t involve too many things to think about as they’ve got the braking thing already sorted.

    This is a good point. We started our boy off on a Spesh Hotwalk which he loves, but it doesn’t have a brake (and the seatpost is a bit long for an average 2 year old). When we got him his next bike with brakes and pedals it was too much for him to cope with and he scared himself on it. We’ve only just managed to get him back onto the Hotwalk after two months of his refusing to so much as look at anything with two wheels…

    Got a Puky since last September. Our little one has just turned 3 and is using it most days. Very quick – I have to run fast to keep up. Solid build and no problems so far.

    Premier Icon D0NK
    Subscriber

    got a £30 one from decathlon, I’m not expecting it to last long enough to be handed down to his little brother but it does the job.

    Premier Icon senor j
    Subscriber

    I bought a “SCOOT” for my nephew – way too heavy for him at 2.
    Avoid.

    Premier Icon cloudnine
    Subscriber

    My little girl has been pushing a strider balance bike around for the last 18 months… will be buying another one for our youngest (15 months) as she’s already copying her sister and stealing her bike to try and ride. Hopefully they will both go straight to a pedal bikes

    midwales
    Member

    we got our youngest a spesh hotwalk, best thing ever, year later got him a ‘proper’ bike and within 5 mins he was riding around without ever using stabilsers. he still has the odd cheeky go on the hotwalk.

    my boy had a cheap wooden one from lidl, he rode the thing everywhere at speed. when he was 3 we bought him a proper bike for his birthday, he rode it one, maybe twice, with stabilizers, then i took them off and he rode straight away.

    if i was buying one again no question i would buy a quality one like the isla, and part of me wishes i knew then what i knew now and i had.

    ruscle
    Member

    Early Rider wooden balance bikes are cool. My daughter loves her’s.

    Ok so i am biased as I own a Strider Bike dealership, however I can say that as parents we are delighted with the strider. My three year old is now on a 14 “Ridgeback and elder sister now goes like Cavendish but up hill. Remember the idea of these bikes are to give the child the balance and confidence to move onto a pedal bikes and if you are starting kids young the bit that really matter is the weight. Strider is 2.9kg whereas Scoot/Zoom etc are 7 kg plus!

    Premier Icon bryan-g-
    Subscriber

    I got a Spesh Hot Rock and took the stabilizers and pedals of and the wee guy spun around like that for a few weeks until one day I put the pedals back on and left it out while I was away for a ride. By the time I got back he was pedaling about quite happily.

    doof_doof
    Member

    Strider is 2.9kg whereas Scoot/Zoom etc are 7 kg plus!

    Where is all the weight in these things (balance bikes in general)? The wheels?

    therag
    Member

    After seeing them at centre Parcs last year I bought a tiny bike, I think it was about £45 and it is great quality

    Premier Icon jonathan
    Subscriber

    IME for a 2 year old (or younger) the biggest hurdle is the standover height. When we were buying (a few years ago) the Rothan offered easily the lowest standover so we went for that – our oldest started at about 20 months. It’s important not just for being able to sit/stnad on it, but so they can get a good long stride in with their foot comfortably on the floor. The Strider looks like it goes pretty low, but a lot of the cheaper ones look really quite high.

    Rothan has been excellent for us – now onto it’s second child. Well worth the money (if you have it). Our’s predates the brake option and I think it is a good idea to introduce these things early. Once he went from the Rothan to a Cnoc14 (at 3 1/2 I think?) the pedalling was no problem, but getting the hang of the brake took a while!

    Of course once they do get the hang of a good rear brake you can wave goodbye to quite a few tyres 😉

    FunkyDunc
    Member

    Following my thread highlighted above, I went and had a look at a few over the weekend.

    Basically you either spend around £40 and get some thing that does the job just as well as any, or spend £75-£80 ish on the Ridgeback one which looks pretty good and is well made, or you splash out £120 and get an Isla Rothan.

    I can’t help but think that the £80+ ones are over engineered for what a 2 year old needs (and wants), and its more what Dad thinks their son/daughter should have.

    For us it will either be the £40 Halfords one, or the £120 Isla one, assuming we can get about £70 for it when Jnr FD out grows it.

    Kip
    Member

    This thread has been really interesting especially as we’re looking at something for Toddler Kip. However, she’s following in the fine family tradition of being a bit of a shortie at 22months old but only 76cm tall. We had a massive wooden balance bike given to us that she loves trying to sit on and be pushed on but by the time she’ll reach the floor on that she’ll be about 4!

    I’ve looked at all the links and bikes you’ve recommended but most seem too big. Her inside leg is about 11″ on her toes and the Puky is just too big, as is the Islabike and what seems like every other on the market (they all seem to start at 80cm at the least). Although the Strider bike looks interesting – is it likely to fit? Has anyone else had this issue and if so, what did you go for? We are pretty practical types and can adapt things if there’s scope for it.

    Premier Icon cloudnine
    Subscriber

    The strider seat goes down really low. My 15 month little un (she’s a short arse too) can just about sit on her sisters and is trying to push it round the house with a little help balancing. Im guessing come summer she’ll be on a balance bike of her own. Ive seen a few strider seconds go for around £50 on ebay.

    Premier Icon garage-dweller
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    Our boy has short legs (like his dad) and we’ve got a Zooom (made by Ridgeback I think). Comes with a long and a short seatpost and we turned the saddle clamp upside down to make it smaller still. He could just about get on it at two and a bit (hovered over the top tube instead of sitting on it and was on tiptoes at that point).

    At just under 3 it’s a MUCH better fit and he’s far more inclined to use it now. It was a bit unloved at first I think due to it being too big and also he lacked the physical strength and co-ordinaton to manhandle it.

    It’s well made (I’ve lost count of how many times its been dropped and is still unmarked), has a working brake that he can manage and was in similar price range to the Spesh options but I thought nicer made.

    Standover to front of saddle is 14″ on the zooom by the way.

    I might suggest leaving it six months and then looking again. If she’s going to struggle with it then it may well get parked for that long anyhow.

    EDIT: Sorry the other thing I should say is that he actually spent time pushing it round the garden while it was too big, learning how the handlebars worked etc, which might have helped him subsequently.

    burnsybhoy
    Member

    I’ve got 15 month old twins (boy and girl) and I’ve been looking at balance bikes for the future. Really like the Isla bikes but it’ll skin me having to buy two. Do Isla do a tandem?

    Kip
    Member

    Cheers. Will check out Strider tomorrow.

    rudedog
    Member

    +1 for the Strider, really light and the low seat make it suitable for younger kids. It also has two little footrests formed where the chainstays meet the downtube (the hotwalk has these too).

    Our wee lad got his for his 2nd birthday and had no issues with the size.

    FunkyDunc
    Member

    The thing that puts me off the Strider is that it doesnt have a brake… not sure if thats an issue or not?

    Its the same money as the Ridgeback which does have a brake.

    joemarshall
    Member

    Rose loves her Strider, i’m really pleased with it.

    It is super light, even at 21 months she can pick it up if she drops it.

    she is happily wandering around with it, did her first circumnavigation of the sofa last week, and the length of the garden in a straight line.

    It goes very low – she was fitting on it at 18 months, and is average height.

    the sort of bell it comes with is rubbish. broken two so far – does anyone know of a small all metal bell, with no plastic parts that break when the bike is dropped?

    joemarshall
    Member

    There is a foot brake kit for the strider.

    To be honest though, i’ve seen a bunch of kids on balance bikes round here and rarely seen a brake, and we’re in hilly Derbyshire. I think most kids only really need a brake once they have pedals. being light weight will make way more of a difference.

    Premier Icon Stoner
    Subscriber

    joe: 100% titanium. only €75 from van nicholas.

    Premier Icon jonathan
    Subscriber

    I don’t think you need a brake on a balance bike at all (although shoe wear can be significant!). Our Rothan has no brake and it’s not been a hindrance to either riders. But I think if you can introduce braking as a concept before moving to pedals it might be one less thing to confuse things at that stage, but it’s no biggy.

    hock
    Member

    Pukys come with or without brakes. While a nice idea the brakes weren’t used a lot by our two kids. They tend to be hard to pull and at that age it’s difficult to get across the rather abstract concept of pulling a lever to stop if you have your feet already on the obvious braking surface. So you could save the money.

    Anyway, the Puky are robust and good value. I would go for the rubber tyre version anytime.

    BUT I would also look at the (suspended) Kokua balance bike. Especially if you take the kids off-road or anything mildly bumpy for that matter. Mind the kids sit on those bike all the time, no chance to stand up and suspend with your legs. Apart from that the suspension seems to support the stride movement and I have seen kids on them which were very fast with very smooth natural movements.

    You might also want to look at this one from BMW (…) which is 2-in-1 and might make the switch to bicycle mode even smoother.

    [img]http://img34.imageshack.us/img34/7788/bmw6lhm.jpg[/img]

    Balance Bikes in general are great. It takes less than 10 minutes to teach them cycling as soon as they get on a bicycle.

    rudedog
    Member

    I don’t think kids would use a brake on a balance bike – much easier to stop with your feet!

    ji
    Member

    I don’t think kids would use a brake on a balance bike – much easier to stop with your feet!

    It is – the problem is then teaching them not to do this when they get to a bike with pedals – feet wrapped around pedals hurts!

    Premier Icon cloudnine
    Subscriber

    I think when they first get a balance bike id doubt their hands are big enough to get a finger/s on a brake lever, never mind have the strength to pull it properly.

    Premier Icon garage-dweller
    Subscriber

    I don’t think kids would use a brake on a balance bike – much easier to stop with your feet!

    I think when they first get a balance bike id doubt their hands are big enough to get a finger/s on a brake lever, never mind have the strength to pull it properly.

    At 2 years and 9 months mine can operate and use the rear only brake.

    Compare that to his 4 wheel scooter that had a run away moment on a moderate slope on Sunday. He tried to slow down with his feet and took a fairly hefty tumble. I appreciate there are differences between the two but also have you seen the price of toddler shoes! Not wearing those out more than necessary.

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