Balance bike or micro scooter for third birthday?

(50 Posts)
Fuckwittery Wed 17-Apr-13 15:20:34

Dd2 has a scooter, but its a bit of a crappy one from tescos and I know the micro scooters are brilliant. Dd1 had one for her third birthday and scooted everywhere for the next 2 years until it was stolen! I think because I've spent the £ on them before, and we have a scooter, just not a v good one, I'm reluctant to buy again!

I've also seen a deal for a this balance bike half price which would make it the same price as the scooter. I'd quite like to try her out on it, she's not as balanced as dd1 was at this age and I think she would get on better with a balance bike than scooter. However I remember the scooter handily hooked over the pram (annoying but doable) when walking, whereas there's no way I could push a pram and carry a balance bike, and hold dd2s hand where necessary. Baby not due til end October though, so I would get the summer use out of the balance bike and then we'd probably do more school runs in the car (dh post section, and in the cold months) so it would be less of an issue. What to do! What does your 3 year old prefer?

balancebikesarebetter Sun 21-Apr-13 20:07:37

But can you do this on a micro scooter grin

AcrylicPlexiglass Sun 21-Apr-13 20:21:51

This balance bike converts to a pedal bike when they seem ready. (on offer at the minute too!) My 3 year old daughter is enjoying hers in the balance bike phase and getting quite proficient. For zooming along quickly we always take the micro scooter though!

nextphase Sun 21-Apr-13 20:23:42

Never had a scooter, but (very small - in 2-3 trousers) 4 yr old DS1 loves his balance bike It can be balanced over the rain / sun shade of the maclaren.

Just hoping he grows big enough for a proper bike before DS2 could use the balance bike.

The kids which got bikes for 3rd birthdays were nowhere near as fast as DS1 on the balance bike, and they are usually much heavier making them harder to carry when child doesn't want to ride.

Wallace Sun 21-Apr-13 20:26:07

That is nifty! Ds3 does swap between balance bike and pedal bike a bit too often for it though.

Wallace Sun 21-Apr-13 20:30:29

Cross posted. I agree nextphase. I don't take the pedal bike out for actual journeys apart from the 5 minute pop to school. It is harder for ds3 to manage by himself - can't pop up and down kerbs without help and needs me there for stopping and starting as he can't get his feet to the ground as he is quite small. It is carryable,, but much heavier than the balance bike.

lljkk Mon 22-Apr-13 08:10:31

I ended up sprinting flat out to keep up with the balance bike. Well hazardous.

Scooters not a lot better.

Wallace Mon 22-Apr-13 08:18:12

Not just me then, lljkk. I use a little life back pack with the lead when we are near busy roads, but ds3 doesn't like being slowed down hmm

Fuckwittery Mon 22-Apr-13 09:34:27

I am still undecided! Thinking a gyro bike with the pedal kit, dh thinks its a waste of time getting a balance bike but dd1 never really used her bike until the stabolisers came off, it was so cumbersome with them. Took the dds out on their scooters this weekend and dd2 was v slow and annoying with her crap one, I remember dd1 whizzing along on her micro scooter at 3. But she hasn't been out on the scooter much at all, and I'm not sure how much is down to the scooter or to dd1/2's differing abilities!

3rdnparty Mon 22-Apr-13 09:40:42

I would vote for scooter if you can't get both[ grin] often see 2nd had ones at nct/playgroup sales - DS used scooter all the time was amazing so useful ... unclicks, so easy to pack down and take travelling as well - even though i was v keen on balance bike he hated it... wanted a bike with pedals grin as thats what they had at playgroup.... he learnt to ride a normal bike later

Blowninonabreeze Mon 22-Apr-13 09:50:28

DH didn't believe in balance bikes either..... Dd1 got a bike with stabilizers for her 3rd birthday. Was ok on it. But very reliant on stabilizers.

A year later, her little sister got a balance bike for her 2nd birthday. Dd1 had 2 hours on it one morning (at aged 4.3) and had mastered her bike without stabilizers by the afternoon.

Dd2 was off her stabilizers by 3.4.

We're now big believers in balance bikes in this household.

But get as light a one as possible.

(Also big fans of mini-micros but very vary of cheap imitations)

Wallace Mon 22-Apr-13 10:37:13

Yup, I'm a huge fan of balance bikes too (in case you'd failed to notice blush)

Ds3 could ride a pedal bike without stabilisers just over 3 months after he started to ride a balance bike. He was 19 months when he started riding his balance bike...

memphis83 Mon 22-Apr-13 10:53:00

My ds has both and since he mastered the bike he won't use the scooter.
We have a kiddimoto wooden balance bike but at nearly 3 he is only just tall enough to touch the floor so bought him a puky with seat that can be moved. They are a lot lighter and last longer as it grows with child but wooden seats are fixed.

BrienneOfTarth Mon 22-Apr-13 19:24:39

We had both, Balance Bike was useless, DS wasn't interested in trying it, just didn't seem to "get" the concept. Loved the scooter from day 1 and had no problems mastering it.

The scooter has been brilliant for travelling - with a "scoot 'n' pull" strap for safety, I've been able to take DS on scooter with strap in one hand, and wheelie suitcase in the other hand, and get myself across the country on complicated all-day-long bus-intercitytrain-tube-othertrain-otherbus journeys safely and simply when his stamina would not have been up to doing the same on foot. I would have had to take a buggy if we didn't have the scooter.

Wallace Mon 22-Apr-13 21:23:24

Feel sorry for the OP. I don't think this thread will be making it easier to decide!

BrienneOfTarth Mon 22-Apr-13 22:22:56

Reading through other replies, I think the answer is "it all depends on what the child in question gets on best with" - OP could you borrow one of each for a week at a time from a friend and see what your DD clicks with best?

AcrylicPlexiglass Mon 22-Apr-13 22:35:08

Get the gyrobike with pedal kit! I think it will have birthday wow factor (my daughter's little face really lit up when she saw hers) which is nice for a 2nd child and on offer it's a bargain really- even with the pedal kit it'll be cheaper than the wooden one you linked to and should see her from balancer to pedal biker so takes your dh's erroneous objection to balance bikes out of the equation.

It's v good so far, honestly.smile Air tyres, really well made and sturdy, hand brake. My daughter is quite physically cautious and a moaner extraordinaire when things are frustrating/difficult but has taken to it right away and is at the taking feet off the floor for a few seconds and saying "weeeeeee!" stage.

From the point of view of slinging it over a buggy, it is heavier than some balance bikes though- I think because it has to be to be an effective pedal bike later and because it is a bit bigger than some- it's for 3 -6 year olds rather than really tiny kids.

blueblackdye Mon 22-Apr-13 22:42:00

We had the micro scooter first when DS was 2, I saw him use his friend's one, within 3 min, he knew what to do, so I bought it. He is now 4.5 and still using it. Same friend had a balance bike, DS used it on and off for 3 months only at week ends when 3.5, and that was it, he asked for his stabilisers to be removed and now rides his bike. I think both help learning balance, differently, giving the child confidence and idea of speed.

Bakingtins Mon 22-Apr-13 22:47:34

I think balance bikes are brilliant, but it depends what you want it for. DS1 had balance bike (Early Rider lite) from 2nd birthday and was on a proper pedal bike at 3.5, DS2 following the same direction. They have both been proper whizzy on it very quickly, I would not take them out on the pavement, we go to the park and they whizz off, with an agreed stopping distance (wait at the....) whereas on a scooter they are both more willing to move at adult walking pace and I feel more in control of them. We scoot to school, balance and pedal bikes are for going fast in a safe environment.
Given the choice both my boys would pick their bikes.
I would go for balance bike rather than stabilisers every single time, but that wasn't the OP's question.

Fuckwittery Mon 22-Apr-13 23:31:09

Now I really want to get dd2 both! Thanks for all the replies, but no, this thread is not helping me make my mind up smile

Wallace Tue 23-Apr-13 21:19:05

Do you know anyone with a scooter or a balance bike you could borrow to see which she likes better?

macreturnofthe Wed 24-Apr-13 21:15:03

just a follow up comment - if you go for a balance bike make sure you get a light weight one, cheaply made balance bikes will be far more difficult to use. there are some great companies out there now doing light weight (expensive though) kids bikes - but they have buy back schemes for when the kids grow out of them.

have a look at isla and frog bikes (expensive, but brilliant bikes)

intheshed Wed 24-Apr-13 21:23:10

Micro scooter every time- they are fab!

DD was given a balance bike when she was 3 1/2- she was just too big for it by then and didn't get it at all. After a few tantrums (and lugging it around as she decided she'd rather run) I sold it on ebay!

However both DDs love their scooters and use them most days.

blueblackdye Thu 25-Apr-13 11:17:08

Actually, the balance bike I have is up to 3.5 yo only....

Wallace Thu 25-Apr-13 19:18:22

Puky do 4 different sizes of Balance bike.

Love the look of the Frog bikes.

Wallace Fri 26-Apr-13 19:49:05

And just seen Strider do one for age 6 to 10!

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