Learning to ride a bike requires balance and coordination and mastering these skills involves patience and lots of practice.  A child’s first bike should be easy to maneuver, durable, and help build their confidence.  Strider bikes have quickly become the most popular balance bikes in the United States.  With stellar reviews and multiple colors and sizes to choose from, it’s easy to see why everyone wants a Strider balance bike.  In this post, we will discuss why balance bikes are the best bike for beginners, the different size options available, and where to purchase them.

strider balance bike reivew

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links to products I love and recommend.  It costs you nothing extra if you purchase through my link, but I may get a small commission.

What Is A Balance Bike?

A balance bike is designed to allow children to easily get onto their bike and glide along without having to worry about any pesky pedals getting in the way.  Pedals and training wheels can be distracting and complicated for beginner riders.  With a balance bike, children move by using their legs and feet to push themselves along.  It teaches them the concept of balancing first, which makes the transition to a pedal bike smoother.

I’ve heard so many success stories of children learning how to ride a pedal bike in just a few hours thanks to starting off on a balance bike.

A Smart Choice For Beginners

Balance bikes are the best choice for toddlers and preschoolers as they teach the concept of balance instead of pedaling.  Learning how to balance is the most important skill to learn when riding a bike, so it naturally makes sense for a child to learn that skill first.  It teaches them to balance on two wheels and helps build confidence in their biking skills.

The skills of balancing, steering, and turning will all come naturally and your child will feel less likely to fall since they are able to put their feet on the ground and control their pace and the bike’s movements.

Balance bikes are lightweight and easy to maneuver which allows children to pick up skills quickly.   As soon as they are big enough and have mastered the skill of balancing, they are ready for a pedal bike and can totally skip training wheels.

How Old Should Children Be To Ride A Balance Bike?

I’ve seen children who are just learning how to walk, cruise around on a balance bike, which is incredible.  If your child is walking, you can introduce them to a balance bike.

We didn’t learn about balance bikes until our daughter was almost three so she started a little later.  At 22 months, our youngest hasn’t mastered sitting yet but loves walking around and “riding” her balance bike.

Most balance bikes comfortably fit children ages 18 months to five years old.

What We Love Most

I love the confidence that the balance bike has given my daughter.  When she first received it as a gift on her third birthday, she was hesitant to ride it.  She thought it was too hard and was discouraged because she didn’t understand how to balance.  We encouraged her to continue trying and taught her the importance of practicing to build confidence and skills.  We brought the bike inside that winter and she slowly started to gravitate to it more and more.  Once spring hit, she was choosing her balance bike more often and had finally mastered balancing on her own.  She has so much confidence and will ride her bike several miles around town.  People are constantly commenting on how fast she is going and how well she is riding.

I attribute this to the well-designed frame of the bike.  Strider provides plenty of room for riders which makes their bikes easier to ride and maneuver.  Balance bikes are powered by a child running and gliding.  When children run, they tend to lean forward.  Strider bikes provide ample space between the seat and handlebars which allows children to comfortably lean forward.  There’s also plenty of room for them to extend their legs.

I also love how light-weight these bikes are.  We have the strider sport balance bike and I can easily push a double stroller with both of my girls in it, walk the dog, and set the bike on our stroller if my oldest decides she needs a break from riding.  It can be carried with ease because it is so light-weight.

Strider Balance Bike Models

Strider balance bikes come in classic, sport, and pro models.  The classic model doesn’t offer as many features but if you are on a budget and your child is younger or small for their age, it’s a great option.

I prefer the sport model because it’s more comfortable and easier to adjust.  The seat and handlebar can be adjusted higher and with ease (no tools required).  The sport version also accommodates extra weight with additional seat and handlebar padding so older/taller children can ride it comfortably.  It’s definitely worth the extra $20!

The pro version wasn’t available when we purchased our strider but I love that the frame is even lighter than the classic and sport models.  Our daughter is petite for her age and she can pick up her Strider sport without any issues so the other versions are still pretty light compared to most bikes on the market.

If your child is tall for their age or older, I recommend the Strider 14x.  I love that it grows with your child and easily converts from a balance bike to a pedal bike.

I should note that the wheels on the Strider bikes aren’t rubber, instead, they are made of a never flat foam.  Some reviewers don’t like this feature but we have never had any issues with our bike since purchasing it over a year ago.  You can upgrade to heavy-duty tires for some of the models.


Where To Buy

Strider 12″ Classic

  • Age: 18 Months- 3 Years
  • Steel frame
  • Handlebar height:
  • Seat height:
  • Weight: 6.9 lbs
  • Never flat, maintenance-free tires
  • Light-weight

Purchase the Strider Classic Here

Strider 12″ Sport

  • Age: 18 Months- 5 Years
  • Inseam:
  • Steel frame
  • Handlebar height: 18-22″
  • Seat height: 11-19″
  • Weight: 6.9 lbs
  • Never flat, maintenance-free tires
  • Light-weight
  • Performance footrests
  • No-tool assembly
  • Additional padding on seat and handlebar
  • Allows for future upgrades, including a foot brake and heavy-duty tires

Purchase the Strider Sport Here

Strider 12″ Pro

  • Ages: 18 Months- 5 Years
  • Inseam: 12-20″
  • Aluminum frame
  • Handlebar height: 18-22″
  • Seat Height: 11-19″
  • Weight: 5.6 lbs.
  • Performance footrests
  • No-tool assembly
  • Additional padding on seat and handlebar
  • Ultra-lightweight

Purchase the Strider Pro Here

Strider 14x

  • Ages: 3-7 Years
  • Inseam: 16-23″
  • Seat height: 14-22″
  • Built-in footrests
  • Air tires
  • Extra-large seat with added cushioning
  • Weight of bike: 12.5 lbs.
  • Easily converts from balance bike to a pedal bike (Conversion kit is often sold separately)

Purchase the Strider 14x Here

Strider also has some pretty neat add ons that can be purchased.

You no longer have to store your bike over the winter.  The Strider Snow Ski Set allows your child to ride all year long by gliding through the snow.  The skis fit all 12″ models and come with all parts needed to easily attach them to your child’s bike.

Purchase Snow Ski’s Here

The Strider Rocking Base is perfect for young riders who know how to crawl.  It not only familiarises them with riding a bike, but the rocking motion helps them develop core strength, balance, and spatial awareness.  It also helps improve dexterity and cognitive ability.  The rocking base can be purchased separately or as a bundle.

The bundle makes a great baby or first birthday gift.  Traditional rocking horses only have one function but the Strider Baby Bundle grows with your child and provides years of learning and entertainment.

Purchase Rocking Base Here

Purchase the Baby Bundle Here

The never-flat tires that come on the Strider balance bikes work the best on the pavement.  Some reviewers have had issues with the tires slipping on certain surfaces though.  Our daughter rides on the grass and has gone over gravel without any issues.  However, if your child plans on riding on non-paved surfaces frequently, air tires might be a worthwhile investment.  This upgrade is great for advanced riders and those who are riding off-road.  They are heavier than the stock tires and will increase your rider’s speed and traction.

Purchase Air Tires Here

Lastly, a bike helmet that fits properly is an absolute must to protect your little one from falls or accidents.  We absolutely love this brand and recommend it to all of our friends and family.

strider bike review

Strider balance bikes are well-designed and truly stand out compared to other balance bikes on the market.  They are the perfect bike for beginners as they are lightweight, easy to maneuver and they allow children to be in control and help build their confidence.

I hope you and your children enjoy these phenomenal Strider balance bikes as much as we do!


Love & Blessings,



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