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Tips for Parents: Sizing up Kid's Bikes!

For most kids, getting a new bike qualifies as the best day ever!  Here are some tips to help you, and your kid, have the best experience AND encourage more riding!

1.  Get the right size!  Most kid's bikes are sized by the wheels.  

Height:
26"-34", perhaps 2-4 years old, you should be looking at 12" wheels. 
34"-45", perhaps 3-6 years old, 16" wheels.
47"-56", perhaps 6-10 years old, 20" wheels.
54"-62", perhaps 8-12 years old, 24" wheels.

Of course, these are a starting point measurements.  Generally if the kid can stand over it, they should be good.   

  • You may be tempted to bump them up a size to “grow into”– this can be done, if your little one is a "shredder".  Generally it is best to follow the guidelines for properly sized wheels.
  • Make sure your child has the motor skills to operate the bike. Some bikes have only hand brakes and shifters that need more developed skills to use. Stick with coaster brakes (back pedal brakes) until your child is older and more experienced.

2.  Proper Assembly

The last thing you want is something to go wrong that prevents a good first impression.  Loose bolts, improper setup, or strange noises can all lead to running back into the house.  Buy a properly assembled bike or take it to a pro.

Setup:

  • Most brake levers have adjustable reach. We can help you set these up to work best for even the smallest of hands.
  • Follow all instructions to assemble, giving each bolt a double check before your kid goes on their first ride.
  • Set the seat height so that your kid can place the "balls" of both their feet on the ground. For new riders you can go as low as feet flat on the ground.
  • Make sure helmets are comfortably tight and worn just above the eyebrows. Adjust the chin strap around the ears, just tight enough to allow a couple of fingers under the strap.
  • Make sure training wheels are just a little higher off the ground, but no so much that the bike tips. This allows full traction when a rider stands up and pedals.

3. Stand back and let them rip!


 

 

 

Blog Credit: Diamondback.com

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