The 9 Best Kids Bikes

Updated September 30, 2017 by Daniel Imperiale

9 Best Kids Bikes
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 39 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top selections for this wiki. Learning to ride a bike is a rite of passage for the majority of the world's children. Whether this is going to be his or her first bicycle or an upgrade to the one on which they cut their teeth, the kids' bikes on our list including something for everyone. We've included models intended to get very young riders started as well as more advanced options for touring the neighborhood. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best kids bike on Amazon.

9. Dynacraft Magna Gravel Blaster

The Dynacraft Magna Gravel Blaster has extra-thick padding on the handlebars, and cool graphics that not only make it stylish, but also safer for young riders by increasing their visibility. It also includes a lifetime warranty on the fork and frame.
  • bright bold colors
  • comfortable seat
  • rusts quickly if stored outside
Brand Dynacraft
Model 8007-32TJ
Weight 21.8 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

8. NB Shop RoyalBaby

The NB Shop RoyalBaby is a great starter option for young boys and girls. It comes with a bell, tools, water bottle, and removable training wheels. Plus, the quick-release seat post allows for fast height adjustments, but it only runs in one speed.
  • wide knobbly tires
  • fully enclosed chain guard
  • steering is very stiff
Brand NB Shop
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

7. Dave Mirra 8110-07T

With a front shock fork, the Dave Mirra 8110-07T creates a smooth ride over bumpy terrain, making it an ideal choice for off-road trails. It also sports a deluxe paint job, and comes with easy-to-control and highly responsive hand brakes.
  • chain rarely spins off
  • sturdy thick tires
  • included grips feel cheap
Brand Dave Mirra
Model 8110-07TJ
Weight 29.3 pounds
Rating 3.7 / 5.0

6. Strider Youth Sport 12

The Strider Youth Sport 12 is designed specifically to teach children ages 2 to 5 how to balance properly on two wheels. You can attach stationary pedals to the frame that serve as foot rests for when your little ones gain enough speed to coast.
  • good for learning tricks
  • has quick-release seat adjustment
  • taller kids won't sit comfortably
Brand Strider
Model SS-S2GN-P
Weight 21.8 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

5. Tauki BMX 16-inch

The Tauki BMX 16-inch is designed with an adjustable seat and handlebars to create a perfect fit for your child, no matter their size. It comes in four color options with bright accents around the rims that are sure to increase visibility on the road.
  • provides a stable ride
  • heavy-duty training wheels
  • uncomfortable minimal padding
Brand Tauki
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

4. ERTL John Deere

Complete with forward shocks, removable training wheels, and rear coaster and front hand brakes, the ERTL John Deere provides optimal control for young riders who are still getting used to riding. Its theme is ideal for kids in the country.
  • officially licensed product
  • best for children up to 8 years old
  • time consuming assembly required
Brand TOMY
Model 35016A
Weight 32.8 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

3. Diamondback Podium

Built with an aero-alloy straight blade fork that minimizes wind resistance, the Diamondback Podium is designed to make hill climbing a breeze for beginners. Plus, it has large 24-inch wheels to help kids keep up with mom or dad.
  • lightweight frame
  • easy-action road shifters
  • soft padded saddle
Brand Diamondback Bicycles
Model 1139603
Weight 28.5 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

2. X-Games FS20

The X-Games FS20 comes with front and rear pegs, making it ideal for kids who want to learn to do tricks and stunts, or those who want to carry a friend along. It also has smooth, grippy street tires and alloy wheels for a strong ride and better braking.
  • welded cross brace for extra support
  • available in boys and girls models
  • tig welded steel frame and fork
Brand X Games
Model pending
Weight pending
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

1. Giordano Libero 1.6

The Giordano Libero 1.6 has a hand-crafted, lightweight aluminum frame that’s easy for kids to handle as they learn the ropes. It's best for kids who are serious about biking and want to go really fast, as its 24-inch wheels and forward riding position are much more adult.
  • 16-speed sti shifters
  • compatible with trainers
  • dual water bottle mounts
Brand Giordano
Model 22406-Parent
Weight 38.5 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

Bonding Over Two Wheels

My family once went on a vacation to Brigantine, NJ, a small community along the coast made up of several very small, tightly packed islands. I couldn't have been more than five, but I remember biking along the flat, sandy roads with my father and sister while my mom cooked breakfast back at the hotel. I had a helmet of hardened Styrofoam with a picture of a snail on it, and I'm pretty sure that if I even lightly bumped my head in that thing I'd have been concussed.

Despite the danger to my cranium, nothing could replace the level of bonding between us, essentially independent travelers sharing a road together. It's the kind of bond that brings motorcyclists together in such tight circles, and it does wonders for a family dynamic (without the bar fights associated with bikers).

The kids bikes on our list are sure to get your tykes involved in your own cycling journeys, offering that kind of bonding experience as well as that almost cliché moment in childhood, when a parent teaching their child to ride a bike finally lets go.

There isn't a lot about the bikes we've evaluated for kids to differentiate them from adult bikes other than their size, the addition of training wheels, and, in one case, the elision of pedals altogether.

They all operate on the principal that a human being should, eventually, be able to balance a long, thin, two-wheeled riding machine while propelling it forward. The propulsion comes from a simple combination of a chain and one or more gears that increase or decrease the distribution of energy between the pedals and the wheels, giving your kid's pedal stroke more power, or making it easier for them to climb hills, depending on the gear.

Framed For Success

By the time you start thinking about getting your kid his or her first bicycle beyond the scope of a tricycle or a big wheel, you ought to have a pretty good idea of their personality and their proficiency. Not all of the bikes on our list are appropriate for the same ages, so the first thing you want to do is dig out your kid's birth certificate, check their birthday, and figure out how old they are.

Significantly younger kids would do well to start on the Strider, which is a balance bike that doesn't have any pedals. It greatly resembles the bicycle's predecessor, a walking, two-wheeled apparatus called a Dandy Horse. A balance bike like this one serves as an intermediary between the effortless balance of the tricycle and the more advanced two-wheelers.

The best thing about them, though, is that they have foot rests where pedals would normally go, so your tyke can actually get the feeling behind the physical fact that it's easier to balance when you're moving with more speed. If he or she gains enough momentum, the balance bike will practically balance itself, which will make the transition to a pedaled bike that much easier.

From there you can grab your kid a bike that comes with training wheels. Even if the little one has become proficient on a balance bike, the introduction of pedals can throw them off, so having the training wheels to start out with will be a further boon to their confidence and capability.

Once they've been riding around on two wheels with little to no trouble, you can start looking at the bikes that will make little Suzie or little Stevie feel like they can ride with the best of them. I'm talking here about the more advanced mountain bikes and kid's road bikes. These have multiple gears and larger frames that your kids can grow into over the years before having to upgrade them to something much bigger.

The Exclusive Domain Of Childhood Adventure

From suburbia to the more rural areas of America, there's always seemed to be something impractical about the amount of space we have. It's not that there's an inherent problem in that impracticality, but it has an uncanny ability to drive forth the spirit of adventure and discovery in us that isn't as deeply ingrained in some other cultures.

Exploration, as it were, is awfully dependent on mobility. In the earliest days of Manifest Destiny, the quality of an explorer's mules and horses was the greatest determining factor in his mobility, along with his navigational skill. The railroads provided the next evolution for our journeyman's spirit, with the automobile and the airplane not far behind.

These were, however, entirely the dominion of the adult. None of these modes of transport made themselves distinctly available to the young explorer, to the curious and adventurous child. The bicycle was a different story.

To be fair, the bicycle was not an American invention, as its origins reach to the late 1830s in Scotland, and to the non-mechanical Dandy Horse of German and French origin in 1818.

But kids on bikes in America, especially in the days after the second world war, imprinted an image of youthful adventure onto the collective mind. Therein you will find endless summer days, forays into dark, forbidden woods, and the incomparable sound of a baseball card fluttering in the spokes of the wheel.

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Last updated on September 30, 2017 by Daniel Imperiale

Daniel is a writer, actor, and director living in Los Angeles, CA. He spent a large portion of his 20s roaming the country in search of new experiences, taking on odd jobs in the strangest places, studying at incredible schools, and making art with empathy and curiosity.

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