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Balance bike or stabilisers?

(18 Posts)
fufulina Tue 17-Apr-12 08:49:21

Hello - we are getting our 3.4 DD a much wanted bike. Do we go for balance bike or a bike with stabilisers? We have another DD (9 weeks), so whatever we get will get more use, eventually...

Any thoughts/advice much appreciated!

5madthings Tue 17-Apr-12 09:01:52

i would go for a balance bike everytime they are great, we got one for our ds3 when he was 2, the was then riding a normal bike without stabilsers before he was 4.
honestly they are brilliant, get one with a brake as htey can go very fast!

depending on your budget you can get some that you can add a crank shaft and pedals to, some german makes do them, maybe isla bikes so then it will last longer and has good resale value.

BulletProofMum Tue 17-Apr-12 09:05:56

I would also vote for the balance bike. The only thing I don't like is tha they don't have brakes. Therefor hills and fearless boys mean a very scared mummy

5madthings Tue 17-Apr-12 09:07:53

bullletproofmum you can get them with a brake, my ds4's has a brake, it took a bit of googling but as ds3's didnt have a brake and he went scarily fast i wanted to ensure that ds4's had one, ds3's was also a wooden one which tho looking lovely was actually heavy and not good when wet, so ds4 has a metal one, lightweight and WITH a brake!

AliceHurled Tue 17-Apr-12 09:08:56

Absolutely balance bike. Then they learn how to do all the important stuff of riding a bike first. Adding pedals once you've got the hang of all the other stuff is minor. All riding with stabilisers teaches you to do is pedal, which is not the important skill. Then when you remove them they have to try and learn the more complex skills, whilst pedalling, which is much harder. Balance bike every time.

fufulina Tue 17-Apr-12 09:29:25

Thanks you very much all - Balance bike it is!

MousyMouse Tue 17-Apr-12 09:34:53

balance bike - or a normal bike with the pedals taken off until they can ride freely.
we have one from hudora which has brake but tbh the shoes do most of the braking...

Ploom Tue 17-Apr-12 09:36:40

You dont have to buy a balance bike - you can just take the pedals (and stabilisers) off a normal kids bike and then put them back on when you think they are ready.

But agree they are the best way to teach a dc to ride a bike. Have taught all 3 of my dc that way & dc3 could ride a bike at the age of 3.8.

RillaBlythe Tue 17-Apr-12 09:45:25

Both? DD was given a pedal bike with stabilisers for her 2nd birthday, & a balance bike for her 3rd. I don't know which did it but she could ride a bike at 3.9. I'm a bit sceptical of the balance bike craze tbh, have a feeling it's all about someone's profit margins somewhere. But DD did enjoy it.

Ploom Tue 17-Apr-12 09:48:15

why be sceptical? All giving a child a bike with stabilisers does, is teach the child how to pedal a bike. And most dc can pedal a bike or a trike at the age of 3. But to learn to ride a bike a child has to be able to keep the balance and thats exactly what a balance bike teaches them. Or as I said, a bike with the pedals taken off - at no extra cost if you were going to buy a bike anyway.

Tinkerisdead Tue 17-Apr-12 09:53:34

Balance bike. My dd is 3.5 and goes like a demon down hills. She's asked for a bike with pedals which i'll get for her nov birthday. She's had balance bike since turning 2 and she can balance a dream. The only issue is that shes always shunned her trike for the balance bike/scooter and we discovered last week she cant pedal!!!!!

RillaBlythe Tue 17-Apr-12 09:55:15

Yeah, I understand the logic. I'm just musing really - was it a problem kids learning to ride a bike before balance bikes? Am just a skinflint really!

5madthings Tue 17-Apr-12 09:56:21

yes you can take the pedals off a normal bike but the crank shaft gets in the way still and unless you can take that, off very fiddly and not all come off then its a pita.

you can buy some balance bikes that come with a crank shaft and pedals to be added on.

AliceHurled Tue 17-Apr-12 11:49:01

There wasn't a problem before. Doesn't stop it being a better approach. There wasn't a problem getting around in horses before cars, doesn't make the car not a useful invention

SimonEvansIreland Thu 06-Aug-15 17:49:39

@Alicehurled @5madthings good points. I don't get the idea of, well it worked 50 years ago so it's fine now. It seems @RillaBlythe hasn't heard of progression!

SimonEvansIreland Thu 06-Aug-15 17:55:12

And by the way, I've designed a new kind of kids bike called the LittleBig that adapts so you don't need to choose between balance bike or pedal bike. It's built like a proper bike and lasts a child from age 2 to 7.

TravellingToad Thu 06-Aug-15 18:00:17

5madthings what's the brand of the light metal one with a break please? Sounds perfect!

YeOldeTrout Fri 07-Aug-15 09:13:50

I've been really happy with stabilisers. Can pick up a reasonable suitable bike at car boot sale for £10. DC still all rode without stabs before 5yo & why it's supposed to be so great to have small kids racing off without stabilisers (too slow for adults to cycle with them, too fast for running adults to keep up) is beyond me.

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