Toddlers get a chance to ride
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and CAN-Bike, children two years of age and older who exhibit signs of pedalling and steering are at a good age to start learning to ride a bicycle. Experts cite the following considerations: Ride-on toys with push handles are hard to control and don't promote independence. Tricycles can tip over, scrape ankles and can be difficult to pedal. Training wheels—or stabilisers—added to a normal bicycle can actually deter important bike riding skills, as they don't promote the most important skill required to ride a bike—balance. Once training wheels are removed, the child is back to square one and still has to learn balance and motor skills.
An emerging trend for toddlers in both Europe and North America is the balance bike. These two-wheeled bikes without pedals, brakes, cranks and chains, can help toddlers make an easier transition to riding and help build balance, co-ordination, turns and positioning.
Take a look at the PlasmaBike for example. It's a comfortably high, easy-to-propel, pedal-free bicycle, with recessed but reasonably wide spaced wheels for manoeuvrability and balance, and a smooth wheel movement for progressive speeding while learning to avoid obstacles and hazards.
PlaSmart tells us that parent reviewers at amazon.com have called the PlasmaBike “one resilient toy” and a “confidence builder at a very early age”. Parents say it gives toddlers long lasting, addictive fun, and strongly recommend it as a starter bike for young children. As with all bikes, parents are encouraged to ensure their children wear a helmet, as recommended by the Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute.
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