Bicycle Network: Bikes 'n' Bits
Selecting the right bike for your child
Bike sizes and children’s ages
You will see a lot of cheap bikes in large department stores. It can be hard to resist the temptation of these products. By buying at a reputable bike shop you will receive better advice regarding the correct size for your child. A bike shop will also have the ability to alter the moveable components (seat, handle-bars, etc) so the bike is properly set up for your child.
You also establish a rapport with the shop, which means they are more likely to attend to your needs if you have to return for further help, or maybe even another bike. They can advise you on the range of bikes available rather than just selling you what is on the floor. Lastly, but probably most importantly, the overall quality of bike available at bike shops is generally higher.
Basic Bike Sizes
- 12” for 2-4 year olds
- 16” for 4-7 year olds
- 24” for 7+ and
- 26” for approx 10 plus
These age brackets are very loose and vary according to your child’s growth rate. It is always tempting to buy a bike that they can grow into but a bike that is too big can be hard to control and this could lead to a crash.
Training wheels are generally appropriate for the two smaller sizes.
A key difference between bikes is whether they have back-pedal brakes or hand pulled levers.
|30 cm wheels||2-5||Back pedal|
|40 cm wheels||4-7||Back pedal|
|50 cm wheels||6-10||Some back pedal but mostly hand lever|
|60 cm wheels||9-13||Hand lever|
|30 cm wheels||Fixed|
|40 cm wheels||Fixed|
|50 cm wheels||Gears, some fixed|