Kids love to go outside and ride their bikes. That fabulous look the minute they finally get riding on two wheels, forever gaining a skill that will give them freedom….sweet elation.
Buying the perfect size bike for a kid is not a precise science. Online guides are useful but nowhere near as useful as watching your kid actually test out a bike by taking it for a quick spin. Bikes that are too big or too small for a kid’s size are difficult to control and maneuver.
When looking at what will fit your kid, you have to refer to the wheel size (an adult’s bike uses the frame). That’s because the size of the wheel is what determines the correct proportions for the rest of the bike. Wheels generally come in 12, 16, 18, 20, and 24 inches. Remember a bike should fit the child, not the other way round. Also, your kid should be able to comfortably sit on the bike with their toes or feet touching the ground. IMPORTANT……their knees should never touch the handlebars.
The frame should be lightweight, aluminum is lighter than steel and doesn’t rust as easy. It will make it easier to hand down to other future bike riders and to transport as well.
Be a responsible role model, make sure that the young kids are safe when they ride, wherever they ride. Make sure that they always have a HELMET on.
How to fit a helmet: They should be even on top of a kid’s head and shouldn’t move in any direction. Straps under the chin should always be fastened, but not too tightly. The edge of the front of the helmet should be one to two finger-widths above the eyebrows. It should feel like the helmet is hugging your child’s head. Sweaty kids might appreciate more air vents in their helmet. If your child bangs their head in a fall, replace their bike helmet.
Going to a place that specializes in bikes products can help you double-check the right fit for your child. If money is a factor, you can look for a used bike, but here it would be a good idea to take it to a bike shop to make sure it’s safe and road worthy. You can also look for bicycle safety community events, many of these will offer bicycle safety checks for free. These events will also teach your child how to make the most of their bike with safety tips for riding with confidence.
Bike Riding Safety Tips:
1. Young kids shouldn’t ride their bikes at night, if they are out at dusk, make sure they have reflective gear on and lights on their bikes.
2. Know where kids are riding and scan for any hazards, like big potholes.
3. Check their equipment often. Make sure that tires are inflated to their recommended PSI (will be on the wheel).
4. Make sure that kids understand how to ride a bike safely and what the rules are to be safe…..like getting off their bike and walking across all roads, so they can stop and check for traffic and traffic can see them.
Remember this is only a guide, the best thing to do is to go speak to a bike professional and ask questions and get information.