So what was his next step? A bicycle with training wheels or a bigger balance bike? One of our neighbors has a little boy who rides a red bike with training wheels and he when he wanted to try Nathan's small balance bike we asked if Nathan wanted to try his big bike. I was shocked but Nathan wouldn't even get on the bike. Knowing very well that he only pedaled his tricycle a few times, and most of the time in reverse, I decided to skip the training wheels altogether.
The goal of balance bikes is to help kids develop their sense of balance before learning how to pedal. I was also attracted to the simplicity of the Strider Balance Bike - no pedals, no chains, no cables, no need to worry about flat/under-inflated tires.
Strider sent Nathan one of their 2012 STRIDER ST-3 No-Pedal Balance Bikes to review in the color of his choice - red, of course, he wouldn't have it any other way! Now when we are out on our walks and we pass other people (complete strangers), Nathan gets their attention and says, "I got a new red bicycle! The delivery man gave it to me!!". Close, Nathan, it was actual the nice folks over at STRIDER Bikes!
|I am completely aware that shoes should be worn while riding bicycles Nathan was on grandma and grandpa's walk way, having a little fun, being a good boy, posing for mama. At least he agreed to wear his helmet.|
We were outside coloring on the driveway with sidewalk chalk when the delivery man arrived with the box containing Nathan's new STRIDER balance bike. The box itself had a convenient carrying handle and a picture of the balance bike. Which means Nathan knew immediately what was inside and he insisted we open it immediately. I was originally going to wait until daddy came home from work but that was not going to work for my eager little boy. If I didn't open the box, I am sure he would have figured out how to open it himself.
|Nathan cannot contain his excitement, "open it, mama!"|
Unpacking and assembling the STRIDER ST-3 was easy enough. I opened the box and took inventory of the following parts while making sure nothing disappeared into the hands of Nathan or Teagan.
|Unpacking the STRIDER ST-3 (Diagram from the user manual)|
So, what do we think of the STRIDER ST-3 Balance Bike?
Well, first impression - we LOVE the COLOR RED!!
The bike is extremely light weight, only 6.4 pounds, which is about half the weight of many other tricycles and pedal bicycles with training wheels.
I like that I never have to worry about putting air in the tires. They will never go flat and are puncture-proof all-terrain tires.
I can easily adjust the handle bar and seat height with the quick release lever. Which means Nathan (almost 4 years old) and Teagan (almost 2 years old) can use the same bike. The bike accommodates riders from 30" to 44" tall (seat height 11' to 16' from the ground) and up to 60 pounds and comes with toddler sized seat and handlebar grips. And when Nathan outgrows this seat, I can order an Extra-Long Seatpost with Saddle which adjusts from 14" to 19" from the ground.
We really love this bike. Nathan is still learning how to use it but he is doing great on it. Exercising his lungs is essential to his overall health and I am thrilled that he is getting a head start on riding a bicycle. Teagan, on the other hand, will take a little longer because she won't even straddle the bike yet. We will let Nathan have sole use of it for a while.
I also love how you can customize your STRIDER and join other Strider families on Strider Life, an online community and forum.
|He is balancing with his toes of the ground!|
Disclosure: We received a balance bike from Strider to review and enjoy, no other compensation was received for this review. All opinions expressed within this post are my own and not influenced in any way.