The Importance of Ride-on toys and Balance Bikes

These toys may just seem like fun and games, when in fact, they are an important step in your child’s learning, growth and development.

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Learning to ride a bike is something many kids experience as a rite of passage in their childhood.

It doesn’t matter if they’re lapping the playground sidewalk, your home’s hallways or zooming up and down the neighborhood streets, when kids focus on play that involves motor skills, movement and getting from one place to the next, their bodies are making important connections with their brains.

 

Benefits of ride on toys and balance bikes

  • Helps develop both fine and gross motor skills
  • Encourages social and emotional development
  • Fosters independent play and confidence
  • It is also a great way to engage others in play and to practice sharing or turn-taking
  • Helps develop spatial intelligence
  • Children learn how to navigate the space they are in or problem solve obstacles when using ride on toys
  • Encourages physical activity
  • Provides kids with their sense of balance

 

While it’s exciting and exhilarating to feel the fear and challenge of learning to pedal and balance on a new mode of transportation, many of these toys can be ridden outside which encourages outdoor play and moves them away from screen time. (Another benefit!)

Historically, the majority of kids started on trikes, went to training wheels and then after many scrapes, pedaled a bike. However, now we have a variety of products on the market that help kids get to pedal bikes a bit quicker.

So which is the right choice for your toddler and what are the benefits of each?

 

Option #1: Ride-on toys

These are playthings that children can use to literally ride on. This can include anything from a rocking horse, to a push car, to a trike or a motor, pedal car or a balance bike. Great for strengthening core and leg muscles, they offer the stability kids need to get a hang of steering and balancing.

 

Option #2: Balance Bikes

 

A balance bike, is a bike without pedals. To ‘ride’ it, your child uses their feet to push themselves along the ground.

Balance bikes have been around in other countries for a while now, and are just gaining popularity in the US. The reason for the increase in popularity is that people are seeing the natural transition to a two-wheel bike and they love that they can start their toddler bike riding early.

Training wheels often give a false sense of balance, where the balance bike first focuses on the developmental benefits of balance and coordination. The upper body must stay strong to hold the handlebars and steer while the lower body is used to move more freely.  After using a balance bike for a while, children often transition earlier and easier to a two wheel pedal bike.

 

Option #3: Scooters

 

Scooters are fun because they help kids explore the concept of distributing their weight from one foot to the other. They also have to use their brain power to figure out how to use one foot to push for momentum and then bring it safely up to glide. The options I love have two wheels at the front for added stability.

 

Option #4: Pedal Bikes

 

Pedal bikes can be used with or without training wheels. Because they require coordination and balancing skills, it’s recommended that you start with other ride on toys.

 

 

Scroll down to discover and shop our ride on toy and balance bike picks.

 

 

Tender Leaf Running Rabbit Ride On

 

Tender Leaf Toys Running Rabbit

 

$120

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Baghera Ride-On Speedster Plane in Grey & Silver

 

Baghera Speedster Plane

 

$175

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Baghera Twister Ride On Toy

Baghera Twister

 

$120

Available in more colors

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PlanToys Walking Elephant

PlanToys Walking Elephant

 

$350

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Ambosstoys Primo Ride On in Mint

 

Ambosstoys PRIMO Ride On Toy

 

$199

Available in more colors

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Wishbone 3-in-1 Bike

 

Wishbone 3-in-1 Bike

 

Ranging from $249.99 to $269.99

Transforms from trike to balance bike!

Available in more colors

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Wishbone Cruise Bike

 

Wishbone Cruise Bike

 

$249

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Banwood Bikes First Go Balance Bike Coral

 

Banwood Bikes First Go! Balance Bike

 

$189

Available in more colors

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Banwood Bikes Helmet in Coral

 

Banwood Bikes Classic Helmet

 

$49

Available in more colors

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Tokyo Bikes Interlittle Matt Vermillion AW19

 

little tokyobike – Vermillion

 

$315

EXCLUSIVE

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Micro Kickboard Scooter

 

Micro Kickboard Mini Deluxe Scooter 

 

$89.99

Available in more colors

BUY NOW

 

 

 

Micro Kickboard Maxi Deluxe Scooter

 

Micro Kickboard Maxi Deluxe Scooter

 

$139.99

Available in more colors

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Scoot & Ride Highway Kick 1 - Rose

 

Scoot & Ride Highway Kick 1

 

$120

Available in more colors

BUY NOW

 

 

 

Scoot & Ride Highway Kick 3 - Steel

 

Scoot & Ride Highway Kick 3

 

$99

Available in more colors

BUY NOW

 

 

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