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Parent's Guide to Outdoor Ride-On Toys and Bicycles
Gone are the days when the only options for riding a bicycle outside is a traditional 2 wheeled bike, with or without training wheels. Starting at 12 months of age, up until children are at least 10-years-old, there are several categories of outdoor ride on toys and bicycles.
Ride-on toys and bicycles are a great way for kids and families to fight obesity and engage in outdoor activities. There are many options for bikes, scooters, cruisers and Power Wheels ride-on toys that appeal to kids of all... ages and abilities.
Irregardless of age, children should always be supervised and wear a bicycle helmet for safety.Continue to 2 of 9 below.
02 of 09
Baby Walking Toys
While it is not necessarily a ride-on toy, the first type of bike kids are exposed to, before they can sit and scoot is a baby walking toy. These large toys offer new walkers a wide base of support, allowing them to stand and walk behind the toy as they push it forward. Many walking toys are versatile and can convert into a ride-on toy. This is a great first option for kids ages 12-18 months.Continue to 3 of 9 below.
03 of 09
Tricycles are one of the first bikes available for young children with pedals. Tricycles have one large wheel in front, and two smaller wheels in back. They are low to the ground and are more stable for kids learning to pedal and steer.
There are even 3-in-1 tricycles, that include features where young children can first sit on the bike as their parents push them forward using a long handlebar. As their skills improve, they will eventually pedal themselves forward while steering.
Children should... always be supervised on their bicycle and wear a helmet for safety.Continue to 4 of 9 below.
04 of 09
3 Wheel Scooters for Preschoolers
3 wheel scooters are best for preschoolers, young kids ages 2-5. Kids stand with one foot on the baseboard, then propel themselves with their other foot, steering with both hands placed on the handlebars.
While new riders enjoy moving forward and backward, older children will enjoy the smooth ride and ability to maneuver around obstacles, by shifting the handlebar side to side.
For children who have not mastered the balance required for riding a bicycle, they will love the speed of a scooter.
Custom...izable scooters allow kids to personalize their ride with their name, a storage case, handlebar streamers and a bell.
Riding a scooter is great for children of young ages, but parents need to keep these important scooter safety tips in mind, as scooters ride differently than traditional bicycle.Continue to 5 of 9 below.
05 of 09
A whole class of ride-on toys for kids and adults are cruiser bikes.
Riding a bicycle is challenging for many kids as they have difficulty pedaling and balancing at the same time. Cruisers operate just like a low-riding tricycle, with a large wheel in front and 2 smaller wheels in back.
This is the perfect first option for kids learning to pedal but who are fearful of being up high while riding. Cruisers have air-filled tires, which are great for longer rides. They are eye-catching and and... attention getting as kids cruise up and down the street or the beach boardwalk.Continue to 6 of 9 below.
06 of 09
Do you have a preschool aged child who is showing interest in riding a bicycle? The first step to riding a traditional bike is learning to shift their weight side-to-side, which can be difficult for young children to master. Balance bikes are another great ride-on toy option.
Do not be fooled into thinking that because there are pedals that balance bikes can not perform for long rides. They are amazingly fast and a lot of fun. Children only have to master one skill, which is shifting... their weight while balancing to move themselves with their feet on the ground. The bike provides a low center of gravity, also making it less scary for younger children.
As children develop their balance skills, many by-pass ever needing to use training wheels. Many are able to hop onto a traditional bicycle and pedal away quickly.Continue to 7 of 9 below.
07 of 09
Traditional Bicycles for Kids
Traditional bikes with and without training wheels are recommended for children ages 5 and up. These bikes come in a variety of sizes and can be purchased in specialty bicycle shops, as well as the aisles of toy stores.
While some will easily hop on-board a bike and ride away, learning to ride a bike can be frustrating. Families with children who are having a hard time learning to pedal a bicycle may want to consider cruiser bikes and balance bikes.Continue to 8 of 9 below.
08 of 09
Power Wheels and Power Ride-On Cars
I haven’t met a child yet who is not in love with the idea of a motorized ride-on toy such as Power Wheels or power ride-on cars. These battery operated jeeps, luxury cars, dune racers and ATVS, for boys and girls, allow kids to explore gentle terrain in the yard, forward or backward, at speeds up to 5 mph.
Parents should be aware of weight restrictions when buying these expensive motorized toys. They often require a few hours for assembly, so consider buying these toys used at garage sale in... order to save time and money. Once the battery charges for 14 hours, the child will get 1-3 hours of ride time.Continue to 9 of 9 below.
09 of 09
Crazy Carts, Coasters and Drifters
Crazy carts, coasters and drifters are like power wheels for the big kids. They have more speed, can spin and glide forward, backward and sideways at speeds up to 12 mph. The toy has a 120 lb. weight limit, and requires assembly after purchase.