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Bike or trike for three year old?(18 posts)

Bike or trike for three year old?aka Cartman
Jan 7, 2002 4:54 PM
Tomorrow is my daughters birthday. We are taking her out to eat at her favorite resturant (Applebees), and then to the LBS for her first bike or trike. I knoww that the LBS will have an opinion, and so may my daughter for that matter, but what is generally recommended for a three year old?
Bike... [nm]PdxMark
Jan 7, 2002 5:07 PM
Get her fit on a Serotta Sizecycle - DEFINITELY.grzy
Jan 7, 2002 5:08 PM
Don't you have anything better to do? I guess I don't.
Fit, fit, fit,TJeanloz
Jan 8, 2002 10:38 AM
Remember, when buying a bike, FIT is THE most important thing. Thankfully, kids aren't so inclined to believe us and make their parent's purchasing decision based on fit. They are much more honest- it's all about the color. For adults, it's all about the color, but they pretend it's about the fit.
Oh Fit!grzy
Jan 8, 2002 4:56 PM
What kind of bike do you have? I have a blue one, but think I might like a red one better. I heard that yellow bikes suck. ;-)
Red bikes are fast...Ahimsa
Jan 8, 2002 7:30 PM
...but black bikes are tough. They go real fast too. My friend just bought a green bike! What a dork! ; )

Go for the two-wheeler with training wheels.Spinchick
Jan 7, 2002 5:28 PM
My daughter found it much easier to pedal it on her own. She's 3 1/2 and nearly ready for the training wheels to come off.
Jan 7, 2002 5:29 PM
with campy pista cranks!!! Expecting my first son soon. I gotta figure out how to get it done. I guess this makes me a bike geek.
dependsbig girl
Jan 7, 2002 5:31 PM
What is she going to be using it, cross, mtb'ing, track, centuries, living room mayhem, sidewalk exploring, or backyard jumps off of plywood leaned against a garbage can on it's side...... : >) titaninum for sure....big enough downtube for lots of stickers... wheels small enough to run over cat tails quickly... and a bright color so the animals can see her coming.... let her go in the store and see if her eyes get big over anything and treat her to whatever her little heart falls in love with......
Jan 7, 2002 6:09 PM
Both of my girls had Raleigh "Lil Honeys" with training wheels at that age. They never really used a trike, except maybe when they were 2 or so. My 7yr old still won't let us sell her 1st bike-she says she's not ready to let it go yet, even though she is too big for it and has her sister's bike to ride now.
re: Bike or trike for three year old?Tig
Jan 7, 2002 6:19 PM
I'd go with a bike and training wheels. Since she will outgrow it long before she could wear it out, stick with a department store brand. Before anyone flames me I'll say why! Smaller kids, especially girls, will not thrash a bike so the quality and strength don't have to be like that of a nice cro-mo BMX race or freestyle bike at the LBS. Save that for when they get to be 7 or older and can ride 20" wheels instead of 16's.
Jan 8, 2002 7:02 AM
We used a trike with a chain for both our boys. It weighed at least 30 lbs! They rode it happily til they were 4 and 4 and a half and went to bikes without bothering with training wheels. At 3 it appeared to us that they were developing strength and coordination that made pedalling possible. When their balance caught up they rode "real bikes". Training wheels are for parents. They let them see their children use their new toy right away.
re: Bike or trike for three year old?Js Haiku Shop
Jan 8, 2002 8:44 AM
Thanks, that will soon come in handy for my boy. -NMTig
Jan 8, 2002 9:52 AM
re: Bike or trike for three year old?RayBan
Jan 8, 2002 8:45 AM
we bought our 3 yr old a 12 inch bike with training wheels and he really likes it. On the other hand I have a 6yr old who doesn't like to ride his bike all that much and would rather ride around on a big wheel(If only he knew he had a schwinn stingray in an unopened box waiting for him to get into cycling!)
I say get a 12 inch bike with training wheels put a nameplate with her name on the bike, maybe a cute bell of some sort and make it fun for her. Oh yeah, remove all unnecessary stuff like hand brakes foot pegs etc so the kid isnt overwhelmed with it.
HelmetJerry near St. Louis
Jan 8, 2002 2:06 PM
With either, get a helmet. One of my daughters spent a week in the hospital with a concussion and skull fracture "just riding down the street" without a helmet.

My youngest daughter could ride without training wheels by at 4.
Please read training wheels.Ahimsa
Jan 8, 2002 3:11 PM
Get a childs bike and take off the pedals. Lower the seat all the way. This allows the kid to learn balance while using the feet to propel. Once moving (say on a very slight hill) the child can pick up the feet and freewheel and put his/her feet down to stop.

Thus the idea of riding is reinforced at the childs own pace.

Training wheels slow the process by making the child dependent on them for balance.

Once the child has mastered rolling along with the feet and balancing, you can put the pedals back on. Voila!

This works incredibly well and I'm surprised to see it not mentioned yet.

Give it a shot and let me know, eh?


I agreeStarliner
Jan 8, 2002 10:09 PM
I agree to skip the training wheels. With my daughter, I used training wheels for a bit of time but they created more problems than benefits, so I took them off quickly. One day, I helped her to ride by herself by running along with her, with one hand on the back of the seat and the other on the bar, and then letting her go - all the while still running alongside ready to catch her if she lost her balance. After the fourth try, she managed to successfully take off on her own. (She was 4+ years old)

With my son, I just skipped the training wheels altogether. At 3-1/2, he amazingly took off on his first try. I think it helped him to have a big sister to look up to.