Top 3 Best Balance Bike Reviews In 2017

Choosing The Best Balance Bike For Your Toddler On The Go

Best Balance Bike

 

Once your child hits the age of 3 you will be looking forward to putting him on the two wheeler bikes meant for grownups. But bikes with training wheels do not teach children to balance; they can in fact be a disincentive to a nervous child who may never wish to get the training wheels off. Balance bikes help solve this issue by letting your kids learn to balance on a two wheeler more safely and earlier in life. In this article we will have a look at three of the top rated and top selling models on Amazon: Schwinn Balance Bike 12-Inch, Strider 12 Classic No-Pedal Balance Bike and Strider 12 Sport No-Pedal Balance Bike.

Let us compare 3 best balance bikes with respect to their features and specifications:

Top 3 Best Balance Bikes Comparison Table

Image

Model

Amazon Rating

Price

schwinn-balance-bike-12-inch

Schwinn Balance Bike 12-Inch

4.4/5

Check Current Price

Strider 12 Classic No-Pedal Balance Bike

Strider 12 Classic No-Pedal Balance Bike

4.7/5

Check Current Price

 

strider-12-sport-balance-bike-ages-18-months-to-5-years

Strider 12 Sport No-Pedal Balance Bike

 4.7/5

Check Current Price

 

All prices and ratings mentioned in this table are accurate at the time of publishing

For more details on the balance bikes discussed above, take a look at the discussion below:

Top 3 Best Balance Bike Reviews:

 

#1 – Schwinn Balance Bike 12-Inch Review

Schwinn Balance Bike 12-Inch

Schwinn Balance Bike 12-Inch

 

The Schwinn 12- inch Balance bike is from the famous Schwinn Company, whose bikes you might have ridden as a child. It is the best balance bike for your pre-schooler.

Features

  1. Schwinn’s foot to floor design.
  2. Air filled rubber tires and tubes
  3. Flip-lock adjustable seat which adjusts for a seat height from 14 to 16.5 inches
  4. Solid Steel Frame.
  5. Weighs 10.5 pounds
  6. Priced between $70 – $100  (Check current price)

Performance

This steelbike weighs 10.5 pounds and feels sturdier than other bikes. It might be a little heavy for a 2 year old, but a three year old will be able to handle it with ease.

The Schwinn bike has tires that have been made with quality rubber and offer good traction.  They are air filled tires which are especially good for kids who like to explore their neighbourhood with their older siblings; these tires hold well over uneven surfaces and are very comfortable to ride on

It is easy to assemble. The flip switch mechanism used to adjust the seat height is easy to operate, this is important as your child grows fast at this age.

Durability

the bike’s frame is made of steel which has been painted over. If the paint is scratched, the steel underneath tends to rust. The bike’s Air filled rubber tires last longer and are also easier to maintain and repair. With proper care this bike will last through for 2-3 of your kids.

Pros

  • A well-made steel bike which is substantial and safe.
  • Long lasting and comfortable air-filled rubber tires.
  • There is wide tubing which prevents the kids from getting scratched by the bolts.
  • Has standard bicycle seat which is comfortable and durable unlike the cheap plastic ones you see on lower-priced bikes.
  • The flip lock adjustment seat can be manoeuvred easily.
  • Easy to assemble.

Cons

  • The steel frame can rust when the area where the steel underneath the paint is exposed to moisture.
  • The footrest protrudes a bit, this is not a problem for larger kids, but for smaller children this can hurt their calves.
  • Handle bar cover is thin and insubstantial.

Availability and Affordability

It is available in four bright colours in most toy and kid stores. It is also available in some cycle shops which carry kid’s bikes. But for a great deal go online to sites like amazon.com.

It is a good bike which is very affordably priced below $100.

buy-amazon-3


#2 – Strider 12 Classic No-Pedal Balance Bike Review

Strider 12 Classic No-Pedal Balance Bike

Strider 12 Classic No-Pedal Balance Bike

 

This is the top selling and one of the top rated balance bikes on amazon.com. Strider was the company which introduced balance bikes to US. This is a great starter bike for kids aged 18 months to 5 years.

Features

  1. Lightweight (6.7 pounds) and lowest seat height (11 inches).
  2. Powder coated steel frame.
  3. Handlebar is low and flat.
  4. Tools are needed to adjust seat and handle bar.
  5. Integrated foot rest.
  6. EVA polymer tires & ultra-light engineered wheels
  7. Comes with a mini seat which is suitable for children from 18 months to 36 months. Longer seat needs to be purchased for larger kids.
  8. Comes with a 2 year warranty
  9. Priced between $80 – $100  (Check current price)

Performance

This bike is extremely lightweight and it has one of the lowest seat heights in this category of balance bikes. This makes it easy for even an 18 month old child to handle this bike with ease.  The handle bar is adjustable as your child grows.

You can adjust the seat from 11 inches to 16 inches manually with a wrench.

This bike has a 5 spoke, engineered, light weight wheels which have been outfitted with premium bearings for a smoother ride.

Durability

The powder coated steel frame is easy to scratch and the steel underneath can rust if exposed to moisture.

The EVA polymer tires are puncture proof, however they tend to wear down quickly on rough surface and are expensive to replace.

Pros

  • Lightweight and very easy for the kids to handle
  • Closer to the ground as compared to other bikes in the market and hence ideal for younger and shorter toddlers.
  • Low and flat handlebar allows for more control
  • Tyres are engineered not to go flat.
  • Extremely quick to put together (some claims about being able to assemble in about 5 minutes).

Cons

  • The mini saddle seats are extremely hard and uncomfortable. Even the longer ones are not comfortable and wear down rather fast.
  • Tires are really soft and tend to wear down after a short period of time. Replacing them will be expensive. They also are not comfortable to ride on, on uneven surfaces and do not provide good traction.

Availability and Affordability

This bike is available in 4 colours in toy stores, kid’s stores, bike stores which sell kid’s cycles. For great deals go online to amazon.com

This bike is an affordable offering from Strider priced at below $100.

buy-amazon-3


#3 – Strider 12 Sport No-Pedal Balance Bike Review

Strider - 12 Sport Balance Bike, Ages 18 Months to 5 Years

Strider – 12 Sport Balance Bike, Ages 18 Months to 5 Years

 

Strider 12 Sport No-Pedal Balance Bike is the upgraded version of the above mention classic bike from Strider.  This is a great starter bike for kids of 18 months to 5 years.

With over 800 amazon customers reviews , this balance bike is our top pick

Features

It is very similar to the balance bike discussed above with some minor changes

  1. Lightweight (6.7 pounds) and lowest seat height (11 inches).
  2. Powder coated welded steel frame.
  3. Handlebar is low and flat.
  4. Quick release mechanism to adjust seat and handle bar.
  5. Integrated foot rest.
  6. EVA polymer tires & ultra-light engineered wheels
  7. Comes with a mini seat and a padded longer saddle seat. It also comes with an extra log seat post.
  8. Has a foot operated rear brake mount.
  9. Comes with a 2 year warranty
  10. Priced between $100 – $120  (Check current price)

Performance

Like the classic, this bike is also extremely lightweight and it has one of the lowest seat heights. This makes it easy for even an 18 month old child to handle this bike with ease.  The bike comes with an additional longer seat and post which can be used to extend the bike once you child grows.

The handle bar is equipped with mini grips which are smaller than regular handlebars to give better grip and control to smaller hands.

The difference with the classic model is also that it has a quick release mechanism which can adjust the seat from 11 inches to 16 inches without any tools.

This bike has 5 spoke, engineered, light weight wheels which have been outfitted with premium bearings for a smoother ride.

This model also has a rear brake mount to add foot operated brakes once your kid starts to glide with ease.

Durability

The powder coated steel frame will rust if it is scratched and exposed to moisture.

The EVA polymer tire wears down quickly on rough surface and can be expensive to replace.

Pros

  • Lightweight and quite convenient for the kids to handle
  • Closer to the ground as compared to other bikes in the market and hence ideal for younger and shorter toddlers.
  • Low and flat handlebar equipped with mini grips for more control
  • Extremely quick to put together

Cons

  • The steel frame rusts if exposed to moisture
  • Tires are uncomfortable in rough terrain and wear down fast.
  • The quick release seat clamp becomes loose after 3-4 adjustments.

Availability and Affordability

This bike is available in 7 colours in toy stores, kid’s stores, bike stores which sell kid’s cycles. For great deals go online to amazon.com

This bike is a more expensive offering from Strider priced at below $120.

buy-amazon-3


Conclusion

Your toddler is the most precious person in your life. If you are looking for a good bike which will help him learn to balance and to start using bikes for bigger boys soon then you cannot go wrong with choosing the Schwinn 12-Inch Balance Bike. It is the cheapest in the best balance bike list that we have reviewed. However thanks to the air tires and a standard seat it is the most comfortable and also safer as its tires have more traction.  Only downside is its heavier weight and higher seat for an 18 month old. But on the flip side it is absolutely perfect from 36 months onwards. You might want to wait that extra Christmas to gift your child the best balance bike.

** All prices and ratings mentioned in this article are accurate at the time of publishing.

How To Buy The Best Balance Bike For Your Child?

best-balance-bike

How to buy a Balance Bike for your child

 

There is a wide range of bikes available for various age groups of kids, with many safety and other features at various price ranges.

  • Size

    You need to start by measuring your child’s inseam. Depending on that buy a bike which is an inch smaller. The most popular sizes are 12 inches and 16 inches based on the size of the tire. The best starting height is 12 inches but the thing that matters is the seat height.

  • Weight

    Recommended ratio is that the bike weighs less than 30% of your child’s weight.

  • Material

  1. Wooden: environmentally friendly, less adjustable, and costlier for the longer lasting better quality wood bikes.
  2. Metal: Steel/Aluminium, steel is stronger, heavier and can rust. Aluminium is lighter and weaker.
  3. Composite: lightweight, strong, does not rust, but can be expensive.
  • Brakes

    Most balance bikes need you to use your shoes to stop as most toddler hands cannot reach them, but a few come with handbrakes. Some of the older children will have the hand-eye coordination required to use these. This will also help them graduate to big bikes.

  • Foot Rest

    For the bigger children, this gives them a choice to glide; it can get in the way of the younger children.

  • Tires

  1. Air or Pneumatic: this is the best as it gives both cushioning and traction. Use a tire sealant to avoid punctures.
  2. Rubber (solid and honey combed): not very popular among the manufacturers. Most traction but low cushioning.
  3. EVA or foam filled: Cheaper and lighter. Also never puncture. However provide no cushioning and low traction.
  • Handle bars

    should be easy to grip and should have protection.

At the end of the day your choice of the bike also falls to your budget.  Your kid will grow out of this bike pretty quickly in 2-3 years’ time. So think hard and decide what is it that you are willing to spend. Just because a bike is cheap does not mean it is unsafe, some of them just do not have high end features which neither you nor your child needs or appreciates.

Also look at the customer reviews online and speak to your friends who have bought these bikes before and then make the decision regarding which balance bike is the best for your child.

All the prices and ratings mentioned in this review are accurate at the time of publishing.

Resources

[1] evanscycles.com : A Guide to Kids Bikes

[2] bikeexchange.com.au : The Ultimate Guide to Buying a Balance Bike

[3] guides.wiggle.co.uk : Kids bike buying guide

[4] twowheelingtots.com : Balance Bikes: What to Look For

[5] road.cc : Balance bikes buyers’ guide & six of the best

[6] kettler.co.uk : Balance bikes buyers’ guide & six of the best

[7] choice.com.au : Kids’ bikes –The best fun a kid can have on two wheels!

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