The 10 Best Kick Scooters
A Brief History Of The Scooter
Throughout the 1980s and 90s, the kick scooter became more popular and prevalent on sidewalks and in parks everywhere across America.
It was the Razor Scooter, first released in 1999 by The Sharper Image and soon known all over the world.
The scooter as known to a modern audience has only been around for three or four generations, and for most of that time, scooters were at best produced using a cottage industry approach. Most early scooters were made by the same person (or parents of that person) who would ride the assembled unit, and usually consisted of wheels removed from roller skates and affixed to a simple wooden board. It would not be until a decade after skateboarding had finally taken off as a distinctly recognized and celebrated sport that scooters finally came into their own.
The first successful mass market scooter was the Honda Kick 'n Go, which the Japanese automaker released in 1974. This scooter used a tricycle type of chassis with two wheels in the front and a single wheel in the rear. The rear wheel was connected by a drive chain to a single pedal the rider could pump repeatedly to build up speed, speed which could then be regulated by a hand brake.
The Kick 'n Go scooters proved overwhelmingly popular among American youngsters, becoming a top selling holiday toy in the latter half of the 1970s. Many people noted, however, that using the attached pedal and gear system was no easier (and in fact was often more difficult) than simply pushing off the ground with a foot as the means of propulsion. The first Kick n' Go scooters had a weight limit of 100 pounds, much to the chagrin of many older kids and adults. The company released a second model in 1978 that could handle larger, heavier riders, and the Kick n' Go 2 was also an initial success, short lived though the popularity of these units would be.
Throughout the 1980s and 90s, the kick scooter became more popular and prevalent on sidewalks and in parks everywhere across America. The kick scooter, a wheeled vehicle powered by the rider pressing off the ground and controlled by an articulating handle bar, saw variations using pneumatic tires modeled after bicycle wheels and skate-board style units with four wheels attached to underslung trucks (AKA axles).
Many kick scooters featured grip-style brakes common on bicycles, but by the turn of the 21st Century, a new design had emerged that would soon gain primacy in the kick scooter market. It was the Razor Scooter, first released in 1999 by The Sharper Image and soon known all over the world.
Choosing The Best Kick Scooter For Kids
When it comes to selecting the right scooter for a child, safety always comes first. The reliable rear spoon brake on the Razor Scooter is a great design for younger, inexperienced riders, as it mitigates the chance for a rider to fall forward over the handlebars during braking. The easy and responsive control offered by a Razor kick scooter also makes these units attractive options for the parent buying the scooter.
With their diminutive yet durable polyurethane wheels, telescoping handlebar shaft, and folding design, these scooters are also great for the home with limited storage or for the family that wants to bring their favorite toys along during travel.
However, for kids just starting to learn to use a scooter (or for kids who just haven's mastered their balance control yet) tricycle style scooters can help maintain a rider's stability while also helping teach the fundamentals of board riding. A tricycle scooter isn't as suitable for tricks or speed, but that might be music to the ears of the concerned parent.
Choosing The Best Kick Scooter For Teens And Adults
If you're an adult or older teen looking to ride a scooter just for fun, then you can't really go wrong with any model, provided you select one that can support your weight and accommodate a rider of your height comfortably. As with younger riders, so too for older scooter enthusiasts: kick scooters with smaller wheels and decks allow for better trick and stunt skating, while options with larger wheels and longer decks are better for longer trips across town or even along well maintained trails.
If you want a scooter that can serve as a method urban transportation, then an adult-sized Razor scooter is a fine choice. Nimble and responsive, these scooters can help the skilled rider wind through crowds and around obstacles with ease, and they are lightweight enough to be brought up and down stairs as needed. Carrying straps also help to make a smaller folding kick scooter a more viable method of transportation for the working commuter (or for the college student). If you have to hop off your scooter and onto a train or bus, or you simply need to catch an elevator up to your office or classroom at the end of the ride, the ability to sling your "ride" under your arm or across your back makes a scooter a much more attractive option.
While today there are many electrically powered scooters available, the enjoyment and exercise that comes with using a kick scooter make them the go to choice for riders of all ages.