Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike
Last updated date: September 12, 2019
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We looked at the top Balance Bikes and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Balance Bike you should buy.
This balance bike earned the "Best Overall" stamp of approval, thanks to its high-quality build and durability. The adjustable seat and handlebars allow it to accommodate a range of sizes. We really like the foot rests on the bike frame. In our analysis of 117 expert reviews, the Strider Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike placed 1st when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.
Editor's Note May 13, 2020:
Checkout The Best Balance Bike for a detailed review of all the top balance bikes.
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From The Manufacturer
Encourage your child to ride with a Strider Bike. When learning to ride, a child must be allowed to experience the feel of leaning and how steering affects the balance of the bike. When a child learns to ride without leaning, such as on a tricycle or bike with training wheels, they aren't really learning to ride at all. With the help of a balance bike, the child can learn how to balance and ride a bike in the most simplest way.
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An Overview On Balance Bikes
Learning to ride a bicycle is an essential part of childhood, but it comes with an exceptionally steep learning curve. Some kids end up having traumatic experiences when they first try to ride without training wheels, effectively ruining the activity for them.
The woes of learning to ride a bike are often sensationalized in movies and TV shows. Most of the depictured scenarios are the same: The parent begins pushing their child forward on a pedal bike, eventually letting go and sending the screaming kid crashing into the bushes because they don’t know how to steer properly.
But a childhood without riding a bike seems a little sad. Bike-riding helps kids learn motor skills that are crucial as they develop and eventually begin to play sports, drive vehicles and/or operate machinery. Plus, the activity allows youngsters to travel independently, visiting friends and neighbors as they please.
Balance bikes are a positive alternative to training wheels that help kids better learn how to ride before making the switch. Balance bikes eliminate the need for training wheels in the first place, allowing for a smooth transition to pedal bikes. Kids can begin using balance bikes at a remarkably young age, allowing time for them to get used to balancing, develop motor skills and train their muscles to ride properly. Without pedals, kids push their feet against the ground to propel themselves forward.
Experts say kids can learn how to ride a bicycle quickly by using a balance bike because they can concentrate on learning to balance and steer before adding pedaling to the mix. With training wheels, kids can acquire bad bicycle-riding habits by relying on them too much. Parents dedicated to seamlessly teaching their young child to ride should look into balance bikes.
When it comes to shopping for new products, price is always a top concern. Balance bikes range widely in price. Models like the Chicco Red Bullet Balance Training Bike are great values, but they tend to lack components that more expensive bikes have. For example, some models come with a steering limiter to prevent oversteering and promote straight riding, while others do not.
It’s also important to understand the fit of the balance bike you’re purchasing. If purchasing online, be sure to measure the balance bike rider to ensure proper fit. Otherwise, find a store that sells balance bikes to find one that suits your child perfectly.
Everyone knows how quickly kids grow. That’s why many balance bikes are adjustable. That means parents won’t need to shell out extra cash on a new one each time their child undergoes a growth spurt (which, depending on age, can be quite often).
Most balance bikes come with adjustable seats, which can be raised as your child grows taller. Only some, however, also have adjustable handlebars. This allows for a significantly larger size range, meaning the bike can accommodate a growing child with ease. The Chicco and Strider balance bikes come with adjustable seats and handlebars.
If your child learns quickly and will not need to rely on the balance bike for a long period of time, growth is not an issue. In that case, any balance bike should do well to suit your needs.
Take material into consideration, too, as it determines how much the balance bike will weigh. Heavier bikes can be difficult for young children to maneuver, which can be a serious safety issue. Aluminum bikes, like the Cruuzee Ultralite balance bike, are significantly lighter than steel models like the Strider 12 Sport.
On the other hand, heavier balance bikes are more durable and can last many years — even generations — without requiring body repair or replacement. Steel models are a good choice if you’re planning to use balance bikes for a longer period of time. Make sure to check the weight of your balance bike before purchasing to confirm it will work for your child.
DWYM Fun Fact
Balance bike company Strider holds several balance bike-riding events for kids across the globe. They have both recreational and competitive events. The competitions are called the Strider Cup, and there’s even a Strider Cup World Championship. The company’s goal is to provide a fun and positive space for riders of all abilities while encouraging kids to keep improving their balancing skills while fostering their love of riding. From Ecuador to Japan to Texas, balance bike riders are eagerly participating in these interesting family-friendly events.
The Balance Bike Buying Guide
- Parents should never pressure their child to switch from a balance bike to a classic pedal bike. Sometimes, the transition can take years. The process should be fluid and natural in order for a child to consistently feel safe and in control while riding.
- Anyone riding a bicycle should always be wearing a helmet on their head. This important piece of safety equipment is especially crucial for kids whose bodies are still developing. The fit of the helmet is perhaps the most important part — after all, it won’t be able to do its job if it doesn’t cover and protect your child’s head properly. Be sure to measure the circumference of your child’s head before purchasing and try it on before use.
- Balance bikes are great for all ages, but the younger they begin using them to practice their skills, the better. Most balance bikes will display what ages they’re suited for in their product description, so look there before purchasing. Typically, balance bikes are suitable for kids as young as 18 months. Get them started early!
- The tires of balance bikes are typically not as durable as regular pedal bike tires. Usually, they’re made of foam or plastic to absorb bumps and shocks. For this reason, you should stick to low-impact surfaces, like grass and dirt, when using balance bikes.
- Hydration should be your rider’s No. 1 priority. As we exercise, we radiate heat and sweat, sometimes leading to headaches and stomach pain from dehydration. Always keep a water bottle handy and encourage frequent water breaks.
- Falls are inevitable, especially when your child is first learning on the balance bike. You should always keep a first aid kit nearby in case you need it. Balance bike accidents often lead to minor injuries, like cuts and bruises, so be sure to include antibiotic ointment, cotton pads and bandages in your kit.