THE BALANCE BIKE - FOR CHILDREN LEARNING TO CYCLE
The balance bike, the forerunner of the bicycle, is making a comeback with the general public. Why are there an increasing number of parents who are choosing this model to teach their children how to cycle? A closer look at a market change that seems to have a bright future.
A KIDS’ BIKE WITHOUT PEDALS AND WITHOUT STABILISERS
As a matter of interest, the push bike was invented by a German, the Baron Drais, who covered a distance of 14.4km in one hour in 1817. Perched on a wooden beam linked to two wheels, his invention, the “draisienne”, was named after him and he sparked off the idea of the velocipede, which literally means “fast foot”. Once pedals were invented, the push bike disappeared from our country as bikes fitted with stabilisers were put into the hands of our little ones instead. However, over the last fifteen years, the bike without pedals has become the preferred choice of the north European countries for teaching children how to ride a bike. Currently, this preference is confirmed by numerous psychomotor therapists. The emergence of new models manufactured by numerous producers has consequently reached India.
A KID’S FIRST BIKE THAT IS SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED FOR CHILDREN
An increasing number of users are turning to the push bike design as it becomes increasingly prevalent as a learning bike without pedals that offer children a way of learning how to ride that is totally suited to the body of young children. Designed for children aged 2 to 4 years (up to 30kg), push bikes are lighter than bikes with stabilisers. As a consequence, they are very easy to handle, allowing children to get themselves out of a rut or move forwards more easily on roads with stones. Some models such as the New Run Ride have a handlebar fitted with a brake lever so that the child can start to get used to using brakes.
THE BALANCE BIKE: LEARNING BALANCE
But the real revolution that has occurred as a result of the push bike lies in another type of learning skill. While a bike with stabilisers helps children to learn how to pedal, the push bike helps them to develop balance. As soon as children are able to walk, they can start to learn to use a push bike. With their feet on the ground, they start by walking, learn that just sitting down on the saddle is not enough and then try going faster. And yet the push bike cannot stand up by itself. Children therefore naturally learn to balance after a while and understand how to move forwards by lifting their feet off the ground. Once they have learnt how to balance with the help of the push bike, the transition to a bike with pedals is totally natural… with fewer falls, and fewer cuts and scratches than you get when you remove the stabilisers!CHECK OUR RANGE OF KIDS BIKES