Kids’ bike Buying Guide

Seeing your child ride a bike for the first time is a really special moment. As they grow older they will be able to play outdoors with friends and join in with family cycle rides. The advice below should help you find the perfect bike for your child whatever their age and get them enjoying this fun and healthy activity.

Choosing the right size kid's bike

Bikes for children are usually grouped by age ranges and wheel sizes. Remember age ranges and wheel sizes are just a starting point also check the suggested height to make sure the bike will be suitable for your individual child.

For your child to feel comfortable, and confident they should be able to sit on the seat, while still touching the ground with their tiptoes. Avoid buying a bike to “grow into” that is far too big, instead look out for kids’ bikes with adjustable seat and handlebar heights that can grow with your child.

Use this handy size guide.

Wheel Size Height Of Child cms Age Of Child
Balance 88-105 2 - 4 yrs
12" 98 - 112 3 - 5 yrs
14" 105-117 4 - 6 yrs
16" 112 - 125 5 - 7 yrs
18" 117 - 129 6 - 8 yrs
20" 125 - 136 7 - 9 yrs
24" 130 - 145 8 - 11 yrs

First bikes - Learning to ride

Balance bikes

Riding a balance bike will teach your child the basics of balance, coordination and steering control without the complication of pedals. Suitable for children from 2-4 years.

2-in-1 bikes

Can convert from a balance to pedal bike with removable stabilisers. Suitable for children from 2-4 years.

Pedal Bikes with stabilisers

These are standard kids’ bikes with pedals, which also have stabilisers while your child improves their stability and gains confidence. These can be easily removed once your child is ready to ride unaided. These range from 12 to 16 inch wheels. Suitable for children from 3-7 years.

Bigger bikes for bigger kids

When your child is ready to move on from their first bike you can start to choose from a wider range of bike styles. From sporty mountain bikes suitable for all terrains, BMX style bikes to heritage bikes with classic styling.

These range from 18 inch to 24 inch wheels. Suitable for children from 6-11 years.


A bike helmet is an essential buy, sometimes available in a kit with elbow and knee pads for extra protection. A high visibility vest or reflective jacket will help your child be seen, and front and rear bike lights and reflectors are important if older children are out cycling during the dark winter mornings and evenings. Make sure you and your child know and follow the rules that apply to the use of bikes on public roads.