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Scared 4.5yr old!

AugustaAugusta Posts: 3
In a bit of a quandary about a bike for our son. We made the mistake of not getting him a balance bike and got him a bike with stabilisers last year instead. He was going down a slope and didn't have the strength to use the brake and as he couldn't stop he fell over to the side. As a result he was petrified going on the bike and we didn't push him. Anyway, we were contemplating getting him a balance bike to build his confidence but at 4.5yrs will he literally be too big for them (looking at the likeabike and islabike rothan)? We were thinking that it might be better to go for a larger Islabike and take off the pedals but will that then be too heavy for him to push and scoot around on? We also have a 2yr old and a baby so the purchase of the balance bike won't be a waste but I just want to do the best for him. He's quite a sensitive scaredy cat! What would you suggest? Thanks.


  • t4tomot4tomo Posts: 2,643
    Normal bike with pedals off is absolutley fine as a balance bike. It worked for my daughter - she didn't need to use it much before I put the pedals back on.

    She hadn't done the runaway downhill bit admittedly, although she didn't like the reach to the brakes on the next bike she progressed to beforee I had a go at adjusting it a bit. Isla bikes have brakes kids can actually use which is a major plus. I was too tight to invest in one, but i did used to use the adjusters to move the lever to a starting position they could reach and lube levers cables etc so they were easy to pull.
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  • my son had a isla balance bike but out grew it before he had the strenght to be able to pedal.
    So got him a 14" wheel bike took the pedals off and away he went.
    Once he was used to it (about 4yo) put the pedals back and he just rode off.

    Also might be worth getting him some cool elbow and knee pads. Next time it wont hurt so puch and 2 he can pretend he's a power ranger chasing badies on his bike. lol
  • baudmanbaudman Posts: 757
    t4tomo wrote:
    Normal bike with pedals off is absolutley fine as a balance bike.


    Just pick your venue so there's plenty of runoffs, or it is inherently flat. Building confidence is the key objective - not necessarily getting him to ride (at least not straight away). At this age, peer group can help as well. If he has a few mates around with him, it's amazing how quickly they can overcome/forget their fears and progress.

    This guy was VERY proficient on the runbike. Parents bought him this ByK (aust-owned kid's bike specialist, we don't get Isla out here) and he freaked. It sat gathering dust for about a year. Then, at a bike-themed birthday party, he was on it with stabilisers, then with pedals removed in 'runbike' mode. I took this shot later that afternoon. The next day, he was riding for real.
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  • Hmm, too late for a balance bike... Found ourselves in exactly this position with our five year old a year ago. Having got used to twenty mile rides with our nine year old, with the five year old on a tagalong, we rather let the big day drift. Fear not though, these small people learn things unbelievably quickly. A few short rides on his 16" wheeled bike with stabilisers, then a few training rides on reasonably flat grass and he was off and proud as could be. Within a few short months he moved on to his brother's old 20" bike and ten miles around Sherwood Forest was a breeze.
  • AugustaAugusta Posts: 3
    Thanks for all the replies. We went a bit crazy in the end! Bought a Rohan for our 2yr old and got a
    Cnoc 16 for our 4yr old. Took the pedals off the
    Cnoc and it's too tall to be used as a balance bike. Took the pedals off his old 14ins bike and that was still too tall to get his feet flat on the ground so he got no momentum! So, bought him an Early Rider Evo balance bike which is for older kids and he's flying around the place. Once he has a good level of confidence we'll put the pedals back on the Cnoc. We wouldn't have spent so much money if we didn't have 2 more kids after him that'll get the use out of them and it is great to see him back in the saddle!
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