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Helmet on a Balance Bike?

Levi_501Levi_501 Posts: 1,105
edited March 2014 in Family & kids cycling forum
We have just order a Rothan for our son.

However, I am wondering if he needs a helmet. I mean all children who grew up in the 80s and before never had them; we just learnt not to fall off! If we did, we just picked ourselves up.

Obviously I do not want my son to get hurt, but does he really need a helmet on a balance bike?

Thanks in advance


  • draysdrays Posts: 119
    It's up to you really - Once your son gets used to the balance bike you will get a feel for how likely he is to fall off. My eldest son is now 4. He started with a Rothan at 2 and got pretty quick on it. He did a couple of face plants on rough ground where I was very relieved he was wearing a helmet. He still has bumps and scrapes now on his pedal bike, and I ensure he wears a helmet at all times. Same goes for my youngest son who is now 2 and using the Rothan. The youngest rode into the side of the house a couple of weeks ago while not wearing his helmet, cue graze on his cheek!

    That's my experience anyway!
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  • UnderscoreUnderscore Posts: 730
    I've had all of mine wear a helmet on the balance bike - after all the under-12 age group is the one where the evidence of the benefit of helmets seems globally accepted. However, my eldest came off the balance bike and , when the peak of the helmet hit the ground, it forced his jaw into the tarmac and knocked out two teeth! Of course, it's possible that was better than the alternative and it's certainly not put him off cycling (at the highest speed that he can manage!)

    In short, it's up to you!

  • mpattsmpatts Posts: 1,002
    For me, helmet wearing is non negotiable, so in essence it's part of getting on the bike. Amy has always worn hers (including on her rothan) - now she just puts on her helmet automatically before getting on the bike.

    BUT, it's up to you.
    Insert bike here:
  • I bought my daughter an Early Rider couple years ago when she was 2. I got a helmet for her at the time and thought she'd love it. Turns out she's now 4 and has hardly been on the thing. She likes to wear the helmet for fun now and again, so I encourage that so she gets used to it. This year she got a bike with stabilisers for her birthday. Don't bother with the helmet cos she kicks off if I try and get it on her. She's never far away from me whilst riding and hasn't had any accidents yet, toppled over a curb once put I caught her. Anyway, probably not a very helpful contribution but I've just registered and thought I'd post about something I have experienced. I think once the stabilisers are ready to come off, the helmet's going on, defo.
  • macbikesmacbikes Posts: 58
    Always, apart from in the garden (grass) and have been very glad of it many times. The other essential for us is a LittleLife Backpack (rucksack harness thing with a lead) that keeps him under control near busy roads.
  • baudmanbaudman Posts: 757
    edited February 2014
    Our rule was no helmet required indoors. Helmet always outdoors.

    Seeing how they started sub-3, most of that was indoors. Into mid-3s, increasingly was outdoors.

    It was never really an issue, as they always saw us don our helmets whenever we got on our bikes. Just like putting on shoes when going out of doors.

    ETA - We live where helmets are by law mandatory for bike riding.
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  • Levi_501Levi_501 Posts: 1,105
    That seems to be a bit of a unanimous 'wear one'

  • Levi_501Levi_501 Posts: 1,105
    Got the bike today; park at the weekend then!
  • macbikesmacbikes Posts: 58
    Have fun!
  • Daz555Daz555 Posts: 4,040
    Up to you.

    We did not bother with helmets for ours until they got their first pedal bike - which is when the speed and the risk really ramps up. My son is far more likely to hurt himself running around like a loon than he ever was on his balance bike. :mrgreen:

    So for now they are wearing helmets on their pedal bikes. I'll probably let them choose whether they want to wear one all the time or not when they are older but for now they'll do as I want. Personally I only wear a helmet when I feel my ride warrants it so I'll not be complaining if my kids develop the same attitude as they gain their independence in years to come.

    The main thing though is that I hope your kids (helmet or not) get the cycling bug like mine have. That is what it is all about in the end.
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  • Even a grown up should always wear helmet. In my country, the police can stop a biker without a helmet and remind him of the need for head protection, and I think thats good. Cheers anyway
  • mpattsmpatts Posts: 1,002
    For us, anytime on the bike = wear a helmet, it's non negotiable, and it started with the balance bike.

    The peak in particular saved amy from some nasty injuries. She once went over the bars of her Rothan, face planted, made a right mess of her chin and the peak of the helmet.
    Insert bike here:
  • The kind of slow speed tumbles children are likely to have are the kind where there is potential for helmets to provide real protection. e.g. misjudge a little kerb, tumble and hit head on edge of kerb. with helmet you'll get a few tears. without its likely to be off to hospital. Its not worth the risk. If you get them used to wearing a helmet, then it'll become habit.
    The arguments for adults are less clear cut. My two tell me off if they see me about to head out without a helmet. I wear mine more for the example rather than any real protection it'll offer if some nutcase ploughs into me on a blind bend.

    Just my opinion - not necessarily RIGHT. ;-)
  • mpatts wrote:
    For me, helmet wearing is non negotiable, so in essence it's part of getting on the bike.

    This ^^^^

    Helmets have been in from the start, they don't know any different now and its a behavioral norm that is re-enforced by me and the missus by example.
  • DeVlaeminckDeVlaeminck Posts: 6,335
    No helmet for mine on the balance bikes - they are going slower than if they were running and are falling less of a distance - just seems complete overkill and starts them off thinking cycling is inherently dangerous. As they got older I bought them helmets and leave it up to them if they wear them unless they are racing or taking part in an activity where they are mandatory.
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  • arran77arran77 Posts: 9,260
    mattham wrote:
    mpatts wrote:
    For me, helmet wearing is non negotiable, so in essence it's part of getting on the bike.

    This ^^^^

    Helmets have been in from the start, they don't know any different now and its a behavioral norm that is re-enforced by me and the missus by example.

    Exactly, get them used to wearing them right from the start and they just take it as the norm when they ride a bike :wink:
    "Arran, you are like the Tony Benn of smut. You have never diluted your depravity and always stand by your beliefs. You have my respect sir and your wife my pity" :lol:

  • larkimlarkim Posts: 2,301
    Exactly. My 14 year old now as a matter of course puts his on, even if just riding around in the garden, just comes as second nature to him. I don't think I've ever had to remind him about it or seen him without it.
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  • DruidorDruidor Posts: 230
    Always insist that my kids wear helmets
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  • welshkevwelshkev Posts: 9,690
    yep, me too. my boy wears a helmet on his balance bike. he sees me wear one when I go out and doesn't think twice about putting his on :D
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