Updated: Jan 8
Skip the Training Wheels and Build Confidence in One Fell Swoop!
Several years ago, one of the best purchases I could have made for our son was a balance bike. He was starting to be proficient at walking and rather than getting him a 3-wheeled or 4-wheeled toy to walk around with, he walked around the house with the balance bike. He quickly figured out that sitting on the seat and lifting his legs allowed him to zoom around and thereby naturally learning how to balance and navigate on a 2-wheeled bike. We had a much smaller home then and he had to do quite a bit of dodging of furniture and dog toys. It was clear that he knew how to ride a 2-wheeler before the age of 2. And it was basically self-taught!
In the last few years, our son has grown through a few different bike options. But the balance bikes he started with included:
Boot Scoot Bopper: we started with this option because it was much smaller than most other balance bikes and that gave him the confidence to ride it. Our little didn't have many falls on the Bopper, if any at all, since he had both feet easily on the ground before anything could happen.
Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike: At this point we had moved to a larger house and we had several small hills in our new neighborhood and we were burning through shoe soles at an alarming rate. We outfitted the Strider with hand brakes from a local bike shop. It only worked with the Strider because it had tube tires rather than solid plastic tires - one thing to look for if hand brakes are something you are considering. .
When our son moved to his first pedal bike, he unexpectedly took to it the first ride out! My husband and I were both shocked and beamed with pride as he rode around our neighborhood. I attribute this directly to confidence and skills that the Boot Scoot Bopper provided him!