Balance bikes are a great option for younger kids when it comes to their first bike and teaching them how to ride. They allow the child to really learn how to balance and steer the bike rather than just concentrating on being able to pedal and put it all together at once.
If you are looking to buy your child a balance bike you may be interested in the best balance bike for a 3 and 4 year old as a great introduction into riding a bike and having a lot of fun coasting all around.
What some parents may not realize is that not all balance bikes are the same. Although they all don’t have pedals or bike chains there are different designs and features that make some balance bikes stand out as a better option.
If you are looking to buy your three year old or 4 year old a balance bike be sure to check out my selections for the best balance bikes to buy.
FirstBike Balance Bike with Brakes
There are a lot of nice features on the FirstBike balance bike that make it great for kids 3 years old and older.
The bike has a wide range on the seat height from approximately 13.8″ up to 18 inches. This means that your child will get more than just a year’s use out of the bike and can continue to use the bike at least to around age 5 or 6.
If your child is on the shorter side there is even a separate lowering kit that is offered to take the seat height down to 12 inches, which is the lowest height you will find with a balance bike that features a brake as well.
As mentioned this bike does have a hand brake, which is actually recommended for ages 3 years and up as they can start to learn how to use the brakes properly. The brake is on one side of the handlebars and it is safe for little kid’s hands.
Another nice feature of this bike is the “horse-saddle” shaped seat that prevents your younger child from slipping off the seat while riding the bike. Parents will love that it is also easily adjustable with a turn of a knob rather than having to unscrew the seat to adjust it.
This balance bike also features a steering limiter, which is a very nice feature to have on this type of learning bike. It helps provide a smoother ride that limits the handlebars from being able to turn all the way around. This prevents sharp turns and helps prevent the brake cables from becoming twisted. Not all balance bikes feature a steering limiter.
The tires on the bike are a traditional air tire which means they can take a little more use over different terrains. This is nicer as your child gets older and may want to start riding over uneven terrains as they will cushion the rider more and provide a more comfortable ride.
The FirstBike is one of the more expensive balance bikes but you definitely get what you pay for with this model. The features on this bike really make it one of the best for beginner riders as well as more advanced ones as well.
The bike is available in several different colors as well.
Click Here to learn more about the FirstBike balance bike.
KaZAM Classic Balance Bike
The KaZAM balance bike stands out as one of the best balance bikes for older toddler and preschool aged children because of the extra added feature of the foot rest built into the frame of the bike.
You will notice that there are not many balance bikes to have a foot rest were the rider can place their feet while they are coasting on the bike. This definitely comes in handy for a child and helps them learn to position their feet on the bike while riding rather than just letting them hang down.
The bike is recommended for ages 3-6 years old. It is one of the more heavier balance bikes at over 11 pounds but it does provide a stable steel frame for a rider.
The seat height ranges from 14″ up to 17.5″. It has a weight capacity up to 75 pounds. There is a quick release seat adjuster that doesn’t require any tools for the seat to be raised or lowered.
This bike also features air inflated tires for a smoother and more comfortable ride for older children.
The KaZAM balance bike is also cheaper in price and can be bought for under $90 when on sale. (Check price before buying as it is subject to change).
There are 6 different colors to choose from including blue, pink, green, orange, red, and yellow.
Click Here to learn more about the KaZAM balance bike.
Joovy BicycooBMX Balance Bike
The Joovy BicycooBMX balance bike is another great option for a 3 or 4 year old learning to ride a bike.
This bike is sort of a mini-BMX balance bike that is lightweight yet very stable for a young rider. The bike only weighs in at 7.25 pounds.
The tires on the bike are air filled but they are slightly wider than most other balance bikes which offers more stability for the rider. You will notice that the rubber tires on this bike won’t wear out quickly like some other foam or plastic tires that you see on other balance bikes.
There is also a hand brake on this balance bike which acts as a great learning tool for when your child gets older and is riding a real BMX bike. It’s definitely a nice feature to have on the balance bike as kids should learn how to use brakes from the beginning so it doesn’t become a big deal when they switch over to a regular traditional bike.
The weight capacity is 66 pounds. The seat height ranges from 14″ up to 16.25″. It is recommended for ages 2 years and older.
Not only does this bike have a lot of nice features but is also one of the few balance bikes that look pretty cool. In fact it looks just like a cool BMX bike but without the pedals or chains.
It is available in 3 different colors: green, pink, and blue.
Click Here to learn more about the Joovy BMX balance bike.
What To Look for In a Balance Bike for a Toddler
Above are my recommendations for the best balance bikes for a 3 and 4 year old but you may still want to do some more research or learn more about balance bikes before you choose to buy your toddler this type of bike rather than a bike with training wheels.
The things to keep in mind when buying a balance bike for your child are:
- Seat height compared to your child’s inseam
- Type of tires on the bike
- Frame material and structure
- Weight capacity
- Hand brakes
It can be tempting to go with a cheap balance bike but it may not be the best bike for your child. You need a bike that will properly allow your child to ride safely and learn to properly balance on the bike so they can easily transition to a regular pedal bike when they are ready.
Once you have decided on the type of balance bike to buy for your toddler, be sure that your child rides safely..
Don’t forget about the bike helmets for toddlers that will help keep your child safe during any spills or wipe outs while riding. Although a balance bike may not have any pedals, older children who are more advanced can go quite fast and definitely need a helmet while riding.