Most of us remember getting our first bike (probably with stabilisers) and how great it felt to explore and discover new places with our friends.
You want their first bike to be perfect, so to help you, we've put together this kids bike guide covering sizing and a few key tips to ensure you make the right choice. Give them a love of cycling for life and inspire healthy habits they can take into adulthood.
Kids Bike Size Chart
How to choose the right size bike?
Choosing the right size bike for your child is the most important thing.
Kids bikes are sized by their wheel diameter and range from 10" to 24".
The easiest way to get the correct size for your child is by measuring their height and checking our size chart.
For adult bike sizing info see our bike sizing guide.
Golden rule: Choose a bike that fits
Avoid buying a bike which is too big for them with hopes they will 'grow into' the frame. It will be too heavy for them, difficult to ride and potentially dangerous to use – and safety is key.
You want them to easily reach the floor and pedals, and have full control of the handlebar and brakes.
A larger bike will be heavier and harder to manoeuvre, which is less fun to ride. Enjoyment is the determining factor that will get your kids to love cycling.
Remember, you can always hand down bikes to younger siblings once they've outgrown their bike, or simply sell them on.
Types of kids bikes
Buy the best bike you can afford
It's worth choosing your budget carefully and buying the best bike your budget allows. Why? It all comes down to weight. Kids bikes can be very heavy with cheaper options made from steel. Weight matters more so on a kids bike than on an adult bike because children as smaller, lighter and have less muscle mass. Shaving weight off the frame will make a huge difference to handling, responsiveness and enjoyment.
More expensive kids bikes have refined frames with less material being used, whilst keeping them durable. The switch from steel to aluminium which is lighter, stiffer and just as strong as steel will make a big difference to ride characteristics.
Brands like Frog and Early Rider specialise in building kids bikes and produce lighter bikes than most of their competitors.
Choose a design they'll like
No matter how good your choice is, if they don't like the look of it you'll have a hard time keeping them in the saddle. We stock a range of boys bikes and girls bikes in a range of colour schemes and designs to appeal.
Choosing the right kids bike is very important. It'll leave a lasting memory and will be a big factor in whether they choose to continue cycling into adulthood. By choosing the right size for your child's height, and by opting for the best your budget can afford, you can't go far wrong.
Remember, fun and enjoyment is everything. Buy a bike which is properly fitted to their size so they can cruise around in comfort. Lastly, get them to always wear a helmet!
Most popular kids bikes
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Frequently Asked Questions
Children all grow at different times so while a 20 inch wheel bike is generally recommended for kids aged 7 to 10 years old, if a 6 year old is 135cm or taller then they will fit a 20 inch bike. See our kids bike size chart for more.
20 inch bikes are recommended for children between the ages of 7yrs to 10yrs. They are also be suitable for children of different ages who are between 125 and 135cm tall. More kids size recommendations can be found in our kids bike size chart.
24 inch bikes are recommended for children who are 10 years old or older. They may also be suitable for younger children who are taller than 135cm. Find out more with our kids bike size chart.
We generally recommend 14 inch wheel bikes for 6 year old children if they are between 105 and 117cm tall. Children who are 6 years old and taller than 125cm can also ride a bike with 16 inch wheels, if they are taller than 117cm then an 18 inch wheel bike may also be suitable. Our kids bike size chart shows more.
Unless a 5 year old child is 125cm or taller a 20 inch wheel bike will be too big for them. Five year old kids between 105cm and 117cm tall are best suited to a 14 inch bike although if they are taller than 112cm then a 16 inch bike may be suitable. See our kids bike size chart for details.
A 16 inch wheel bike is the size that we recommend for a 6 year old who is between 112cm and 125cm tall. Six year old kids taller than 117cm may also fit an 18 inch wheel bike. You can see this more clearly in our kids bike size chart.
A 20 inch bike is a bike with 20 inch wheels. This mostly means bikes for kids 7 to 10 years old who are between 125cm and 136cm tall. Not all 20 inch wheel bikes are kids bikes however as BMX bikes also have 20 inch wheels.
The best bike for a 3 year old is a balance bike. These are the best type of bike to learn the essential skills of cycling. If they are already confident on a balance bike then they can move up to a pedal bike. A 12 inch wheel bike will be the right size or a 14 inch bike if they are more than 105cm tall. See our kids bike size chart to find out more.
A 14 inch frame bike shouldn’t be confused with a 14 inch wheel bike. A 14 inch frame bike is suitable for a small adult or a child between 150cm and 160cm tall. A 14 inch wheel bike is for a child 105cm to 117cm tall between 4yrs and 6yrs old. Our kids bike size chart shows this in more detail.
A kid can begin to learn how to ride a bike when they are 2 years old or at any age after that. The best place to start is with a balance bike as these teach essential cycling skills. See our How to Teach Your Child to Ride a Bike guide for more.