Balance bikes have a huge range of features, but possibly the most important factor to consider when you are selecting the best balance bike is the type of frame component.
Your main choice will be to choose between a wooden frame or a metal frame, which will comprise of steel or aluminium. This post is going to look into wooden balance bikes in some detail – the features and advantages of wooden balance bikes and some recommended models!
Advantages of a wooden balance bike
Wooden balance bikes look great and kids love them. Another fantastic advantage is that they are environmentally friendly and most have spoke less wheels to stop little toes and feet getting trapped.
The wooden frames can be painted in bright, stylish and funky designs, and children will also find wooden balance bikes easy to manoeuvre. There is a great range of quality wooden balance bikes that we are about to explore!
Disadvantages of a wooden balance bike
Although wooden balance bikes look great – they do not have the appearance of a real bike, so if your child would prefer a sleeker and sportier model then you may want to look for a steel or aluminium bike instead. Wooden balance bikes also generally have a smaller range of heights on the saddle – so they are not as adjustable as metal bikes.
Some might be concerned about a wooden bike warping – but as long as you don’t leave your bike out in the rain then this should not be a problem!
Recommended wooden balance bikes
One of the leading manufacturers of wooden balance bikes are Kiddimoto, who offer a range of balance bikes for children from 2 to 6 years of age. Their bikes are made from natural birch plywood and are sourced from managed forests so you will be doing your bit for the environment if you choose one of their bikes. They come in a range of styles and designs and can even be personalised with your childs name – which is a feature they are sure to love!
Kiddimoto balance bikes are made from birch which is the most common material used in the manufacture of wooden balance bikes. This is because birch is very light but strong and durable which is essential as a good bike will receive heavy use even if it is only over a couple of years. The bikes are usually made from a number of layers that are glued together, which helps to prevent cracking and warping.
Kiddimoto also offer a great range of kids bike helmets to complement their wooden bikes.
Another very popular brand of wooden balance bikes is Early Rider and the Early Rider Lite is aimed at younger children aged between 18 months – 3 years. The Early Rider looks great with a stylish and fiery design, and it is fitted with a turning limiter to help younger children concentrate on their balance.
However, Early Rider’s most popular model is the Early Rider Classic, which is aimed at the core balance bike market of between 2 -5 years. The Early Classic comes with a range of premium features, including ‘Fat Boy’ pneumatic tyres and this is a fantastic, top of the range wooden balance bike.
A rival to Early Rider is the Prince Lionheart range of balance bikes, which are also made from birch plywood so their bikes are lightweight and strong. With a stylish and sporty appearance, this is also a bike offering quality and durability and is in a cheaper price range as the Prince Lionheart Balance Bike will set you back around £60.
John Crane also offer lovely wooden balance bikes, through their own label Tidlo bikes.
These bikes are manufactured from replenished rubberwood, so they are environmentally friendly as well as great fun. The John Crane bikes have a sturdy construction and come in a range of brightly painted colours including pink and red.
They are also slightly cheaper than the Kiddimoto bikes, with prices starting at around £40.
Finally, don’t forget the Jiggy Wooden Balance Bike which is great value at just £35, and provides a retro appearance, inflatable tyres and features including an adjustable seat. A real favourite in the playground!
The most important factor to consider when you are choosing the best balance bike is the fit for your child, but there are definitely pros and cons to buying a wooden balance bike. At the end of the day, it will come down to personal preference, the style and design as well as the frame. There is a great choice of bikes out there to suit everybody!