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Balance bike vs. Tricycle for 2 year old - Page 2

post #21 of 31

My son got a balance bike (Strider, which I find to be very well made and nice looking and I'm picky so I'm not sure where the thoughts of it being cheaply made come from) for his 2nd birthday.  He LOVES it.  At 31 months he's now easily coasting down hills and lifting his feet from the ground to glide on flat surfaces.  On inclines he often stands and walks straddling the bike.  It is VERY lightweight, enough that he can pick it up and carry it up and down the stairs which means that "falls" are a non-issue, he just stands right back up.  The light weight also makes it easy on me, I can hang it off of the stroller when he doesn't want to ride it anymore and it doesn't add any weight to the stroller or tip it back.


When they first get the bikes, they usually walk beside them for awhile, then straddle the bar and walk over them for awhile, then start trying to sit on the bar or straddle the seat, then finally sit on the seat and walk.  Coasting seems to come a few months after walking/running on the bike.

post #22 of 31

I have three kids.  With my oldest I didn't know about balance bikes.  However, with my second child she had a balance bike and loved it!  After riding her balance bike since she was 2 we got her a bike with pedals a little after she turned 4.  It only took her two tries and now she is zipping around on a bike with pedals.  People are alway amazed!  My youngest is almost 18 months and I just found him a great <a href="http://www.BalanceBikeAnd.com">Balance Bike</a> here for a great price.  Plus I was able to get him a helmet that will find his smaller head!  They had a great coupon and my order was shipped for free!

post #23 of 31

All 3 of my kids have learned a bit on both.  Honestly, I think either would be great.  My husband and I are very much into biking, so I find all the theorizing about the "best" way to introduce a bike very interesting, but I honestly think people overthink it a bit.  Your child will have fun, get exercise, and develop future bike-riding skills on either, so unless it's of particular importance to you that he's riding a 2-wheel bike without training wheels at a very young age, I would just go with whichever one he's/you're more drawn to.


Where balance bikes are concerned, we have a wooden Radio Flyer one that we got several years ago.  It's cute, but it's too tall for my very tall almost-2-year-old, who is very ready to be using it (and she's considerably taller than her older brother and sister were at her age--if I recall correctly, they were almost 3 when they could really use it).  My neighbors have a Specialized "Hotwalk" for their 2-year-old, and the seat goes much lower, plus it's lightweight and well-made.  When my daughter turns 2 in a couple months, we may pick one of those up for her if I can find one at a reasonable price (they're pretty expensive).  The other one that I think is really cool and may consider for her is the Micro G Bike (I think that's what it's called--anyway, that will bring it up on Google).  I've seen some videos of pretty small kids riding those, and they look pretty cool.


Another thought: We got my youngest a 3-wheeled Razor scooter a couple months ago, and she LOVES it.  She got it right away (she was about 20 months), and has learned to steer really well from it.  Now, she can move really fast on it, and she rides it every day.  We have a Kettler tricycle that the older kids used, and she's getting the hang of pedaling, but when she loses momentum she sometimes has trouble and gets frustrated.  


Anyway, I don't think you can really go wrong here--either will make a great gift.  

post #24 of 31

I was just coming to this forum to post a question about balance bikes!  We got one for our 2 year old this weekend for her birthday.  She HATES it!  All attempts to get her to try it are met with "no like bike"  She doesn't like that it's tippy - even though the seat is low enough for both her feet to be planted flat on the gound.   Anyone else have a kid who didn't like a balance bike at first but grew to like it over time?  My six year old LOVES it!  At least someone is using it.


We have an Kettler trike that her older sibs used and she quite likes that. 

post #25 of 31

DD2 strongly disliked our balance bike until this summer, she is now 4.5. She flat out refused to use it before. She loves it now and has been cruising all over the neighborhood with it. So there is hope! Even if it takes a few years. winky.gif

post #26 of 31

We also have a Kettler trike - DS got it for his 2nd birthday.  He is big for his age, but he was able to peddle it after about a month or two of having it.  He is going to be 3 in the fall and he still loves riding his trike.  He can ride quite far on it too so it's nice that I don't have to "steer" or push him. 

post #27 of 31

My son has a trike and a balance bike. Really the balance bike is what replaces the 2 wheel bike with training wheels. There are still advantages in having a trike. I figure my son will learn to peddle on the trike and learn to balance on the balance bike, and then he'll be ready for a 2 wheeler regular bike. We first got DS1 a trike. He learned to peddle when he was about 19 months. Sometimes he'd need help to get going though. By the end of that summer/fall he was 23 months and could peddle on his own pretty well.  When he was 24 months we got him a balance bike. TBH, that hasn't really gotten that much use. DS1 is a quick learner and pretty advanced, however, a very cautious boy. He tried a couple times when he first turned 2 on the bike. (He would just kind of walk with it, not really glide at all). Now that it's summer again, he's now 31 months and will still only walk while on the bike, no gliding. Maybe by the end of summer/fall he'll start gliding, but if not then hopefully next year.


We've got a Radio Flyer trike.  http://www.toysrus.com/product/index.jsp?productId=3155376


and a Mini glider. http://www.amazon.com/Glide-Bikes-MG-12R-Mini-Glider/dp/B001HX3CDQ/ref=sr_1_1?s=sporting-goods&ie=UTF8&qid=1308159077&sr=1-1


We've had no problems with him fitting on the glide bike. The seat goes down very low. However, the handlebars are pretty high and you can't really lower it down far enough IMO. However, definitely still usable for a young one.

post #28 of 31

DD got a fold in go radio flyer trike for her 2nd birthday. She was pedaling it within a month of using it as her legs got longer and stronger. She really likes it. We've tried several varieties of balance bikes and she just isn't big enough to handle them independently so we are going to wait on those. Maybe for her 3rd birthday or for Christmas. She likes them but it requires us helping her which as a pp stated is hard on your back! We will do a balance bike over a small bike with training wheels though when she is ready. She's petite and cautious so readiness is probably different for different kids.


I will say though that we go to a playgroup where the kids bring their bikes. Although a lot of the 2 year olds have balance bikes almost none of them can use them yet. They all fight to borrow DD's trike!

post #29 of 31
Originally Posted by Peony View Post

DD2 strongly disliked our balance bike until this summer, she is now 4.5. She flat out refused to use it before. She loves it now and has been cruising all over the neighborhood with it. So there is hope! Even if it takes a few years. winky.gif

Oh good - I only need to hang on for 2.5 more years.  Based my experience, I vote - trike winky.gif



post #30 of 31

This depends on your kid I suppose. 


My DS was peddling by 18mo, had a tiny bike with training wheels by 2yo and was riding w/o trainers by 4yo. 


My 22mo DD still isn't peddling, but in all fairness she can't reach the peddles on her tricycle!  For now she loves to go for rides on it while I push her.  I also bought her a balance bike, but it's too heavy for her and she can't control it well.  She probably won't have enough coordination, height and weight until she's 2.5 or so for either method.

post #31 of 31

get the balance bike!!! I had one for my dd and it made window shopping, walking about the city, going to the park so much easier than using a stroller. AND she leanerd how to particpate in/take more notice of traffic than she did sitting passively in a stroller. Helped me lose a few extra pounds, too. She was riding a normal bicycle before she turned 4, and she managed that on her first try. (She had learned how to use pedals on other bike-like contraptions in pre-school.)

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