balance bike or pedal bike for 3yr old?

(43 Posts)
dizzydixies Wed 18-Feb-09 21:21:38

DD2 will be 3 in May and is tall for her age, she can go a trike no problem and WANTS to go on DD1's bike (although there are issues with remembering to pedal/steer and look up all at the same time!!)

we want to get her one for her birthday, although give her it early as we're out all the time but I can't decide between a balance one or a pedal one

am tempted by balance as DD1, who will be 6 in July, still has stabilisers and I like the concept of the balance bike teaching them

also by the time the balance bike is no use to DD2, she can have DD1's pedal bike and DD3 can have the balance bike grin

right then, someone tell me pros and cons please!!!

Lubyloo Wed 18-Feb-09 21:27:49

Balance bikes are fabulous and we have an Islabike for DD who is 3.4. However she has nearly outgrown hers now.

You will get good use of your bike if you have a third daughter but the other option is to get a bike with pedals but take them off and drop the saddle so she learns how to balance.

dizzydixies Wed 18-Feb-09 21:28:50

it was the Islabike I was looking at, would you recommend it. I nearly died when I saw it was £99 shock and none on ebay !!

dizzydixies Wed 18-Feb-09 21:29:25

the other one was a puky but even the name put me off grin

Brangelina Wed 18-Feb-09 21:33:22

Definitely a balance bike. DD has one and goes like a rocket on it. We only paid about 69 euros for ours, but even if you do get a more expensive one the resale value is still quite high.

dizzydixies Wed 18-Feb-09 21:34:04

oh god, a rocket you say? DD2 already has a lack of self preservation as it is !!

Mummyfor3 Wed 18-Feb-09 21:37:29

You can get bike that will function as a balance bike to start with, and convert into a proper pedal bike.
Balacen bike is fab for development of early balancing skills. DSs 1+2 both loved it and transferred their skill v easily to pedal bikes without the need for stabilisers.

tassisssss Wed 18-Feb-09 21:38:13

I'm sure balance bikes are lovely, but at 3 I'd get my kids a real bike or a scooter.

Up to you of course!

louii Wed 18-Feb-09 21:41:21

www.jejamescycles.co.uk/id39637.html

This is the bike we got DS for his 3rd birthday, u can use it as a balance bike, then with the stabilisers the without them.

Best bit though, parent handle, save your back.

dizzydixies Wed 18-Feb-09 21:41:46

tassissss she's not going to be 3 until end of May and she's desperate for a bike NOW and keeps trying to go on DD1's which is too big for her grinshock

was considering a balance bike in the first instance which would get us through this summer after which she could have DD1's bike

just wondering if its worth it or not for the learning part

smallorange Wed 18-Feb-09 21:41:57

You can get a balance bike cheaper in John Lewis. DD1 (4.5) is now on a pedal bike - it took her half an hour to learn after 6 months on the balance bike.

dizzydixies Wed 18-Feb-09 21:42:35

thanks smallorange smile

dobby2001 Wed 18-Feb-09 21:44:46

How funny, i am getting an islabike this weekend for my 7yo DD and have been talking about balence bikes/1st bikes with a couple of people this week grin

Islabikes look expensive compared to the ones you get in halfords etc but the build quality are amazing - there is no comparison.

You can take the pedals off the cnoc 14 to use as a balence bike initially then put them on to use properly once your child is confident.

The resale value is at least 50% of the new price and islabike offer a buyback service if you trade up to next size so given the rave reviews they get it seems good to me ;0)

Barking Wed 18-Feb-09 21:45:08

Another recommendation for the Islabikes, we have one for each dc and I've recently got the biggest bike for myself.

You can sell them back to them and trade up for the next size. The quality is the best I've seen, plus they're very light.

My youngest goes like a rocket!

Another good make for balance bikes is the likeabike, if you scroll down to the bottom they even have one with a trailer.

Blu Wed 18-Feb-09 21:46:54

DS had a 12" Puky bike, we took the pedals off and he used it as a balance bike (you can't do that with most bikes), once he was really confident with balancing and free-wheeling for long distances and round corners, we put the pedals back on and he could ride straight away.

I would avoid stabilisers.

tassisssss Wed 18-Feb-09 21:48:14

apologies dizzy, I thought it was for her 3rd b'day...I know loads of 3 year olds who've received real bikes for their 3rd b'days. But I'm sure balance bikes are lovely!

smallorange Wed 18-Feb-09 21:49:03

I'd just make sure your daughter can put her feet flat on the ground and bend her legs a bit when you put her on it. It it's too big she won't be able to push herself along - leading to more frustration!

We got the cheaper one from JL (and customised it with fairy stickers) but friend has very cool pink one called a ridgeback scoot. Not cheap but is lovely.

smallorange Wed 18-Feb-09 21:49:06

I'd just make sure your daughter can put her feet flat on the ground and bend her legs a bit when you put her on it. It it's too big she won't be able to push herself along - leading to more frustration!

We got the cheaper one from JL (and customised it with fairy stickers) but friend has very cool pink one called a ridgeback scoot. Not cheap but is lovely.

Piffpaffpoff Wed 18-Feb-09 21:53:51

DS (2.5) is just learning to ride his Islabike and it's fab. Ours was about £120 I think because we got the optional brake added, which is proving invaluable as he goes whizzing off down hills! It is expensive but, as dobby2001 says, the build quality is amazing and we are going to pass it on to DD once she is old enough.

I also considered a specialized hotwalk which was about £70 I think?

dizzydixies Thu 19-Feb-09 19:13:32

tassisssss its 'technically' for her birthday but she's getting it early as last year our summer was in April and then nothing but shitty weather after it! the past few days have been lovely so I'm clinging on to the hope that the weather is going to be nice enough to get them out and about on their bikes sooner rather than later smile

bloss Thu 19-Feb-09 19:24:35

Message withdrawn

Habbibu Thu 19-Feb-09 19:38:53

Love our Islabike - you may see us on the path to Tayport soon! The resale value is so high the bike may only end up costing you £30 or so in the end.

dizzydixies Thu 19-Feb-09 20:31:06

Habbibu can I ask where you got yours? they say on the site to measure the wee one as they have to be minimum 88cm and she's coming up at 98cm shock

I tried looking online at the Leuchars site but don't think they stock them

Chamomile Thu 19-Feb-09 20:38:50

I think balance bikes are great and we got DD one for Christmas but she has asked a few times why Santa didn't get her any pedals.sad
I got this one because it is lightweight and pink.www.wiggle.co.uk/p/Cycle/7/FirstBike_Street_Pedal-Free_Kids_Bike/5360033824/

Habbibu Thu 19-Feb-09 20:46:42

Ordered it direct, dizzy - phoned and spoke to Isla herself, and she was really helpful and lovely. dd is 93 cm, and we have the seat set pretty low atm.

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