A Balance Bike – Good or Bad?

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Quite a few caregivers who have seen us use the Balance Bike have asked us if it is really worth investing in. After all, it doesn’t have pedals, what use will it be? We had the same apprehensions and questions when we set out to buy it for our son.

I came across the concept of a balance bike when i was casually reading some blogs and i thought this would be a great gift for my toddler for his second birthday.  A little bit of research landed me on the Bril Rider available in India. When i shared this information with others in our family, they asked the same questions and eventually we decided to take a chance and ordered it.

Let me start with the packaging. It came packed in a small compact box with easy to understand instructions on how to assemble it. The company also sells helmets so we had ordered one of those too. We fixed the parts, adjusted the height and got the cycle up and running, only to be very disappointed when our son rejected it after a few tries.  But i caaaan’t was his response each time we tried to get him on it. After multiple attempts I gave up on it and just left it in a corner to collect dust. One fine day about 4 months after the purchase my son went and tried to ride it again. He asked his dad to take him outside and slowly but surely he got the concept behind this bike. Within a few days he was a pro at it and then he and his bike were unstoppable!

Fast forward to a year later, we decided he was ready for a real bike with pedals and got him one for his third birthday. We kept the trainer wheels on for a few days till he got the concept of pedals which was completely new to him. Then, much to his disappointment, we took off the trainers and his fear returned once again. But i will faaalll! Please put the trainer wheels back. I was majorly disappointed that the balance bike which was bought to teach him how to balance and make the transition easy had failed and I was ready to go the traditional way of letting him keep the trainer wheels on. I am so glad my husband insisted on not letting him ride that way and just like with the balance bike, one day he decided he knew how to cycle and just whizzed away in one shot!

So for all those who wonder if a balance bike helps, yes it does. You just have to keep at it till your child is ready to start using it. Yes, the transition to a bike with pedals is a breeze and it is the biggest joy to see the confidence with which they balance, pedal and cycle around!