As they're so popular these days, I'm pretty sure you will have seen a child riding a balance bike, but if not then basically they're a little bike with no pedals. It has a traditional saddle but is lower to the ground than a bicycle and the idea is that younger children become familiar with how to balance while pushing themselves along with their feet.
When I was little I'm pretty sure balance bikes didn't exist, but in recent years they seem to have become so popular. I'm pretty sure you will spot a child on a balance bike every time you go to a park and I'm always amazed at how confident toddlers are riding around on them. Now that we live somewhere with pavements and lots of flat paved areas, we thought it was a perfect time to get LO going on a balance bike, so I was really pleased when the lovely people at Skates got in touch to ask if we'd like to give him a go at learning to ride one of their Xootz Green Balance Bikes. With Easter just around the corner, we thought it would make a perfect Easter present and a nice healthy alternative to getting lots of Easter chocolate- I figured it would be the perfect way to get him being active and outside in the sunshine, plus getting to scoot around on a bike make an exciting change to the usual daily walk around the block.
The Xootz Balance Bike comes in wither bright green or pink and consists of a lightweight plastic frame which is foldable- great for when you want to put it in the car along with a pushchair and heading out for a walk further afield. As a busy mum with two young children to take out and about, having a bike which is lightweight is crucial as I can guarantee most parents will end up doing some carrying of the bike at some point during a walk (toddlers can be so contrary!) Because it's foldable, it also saves on space and can be stored away neatly in a cupboard, which is a bonus if you don't have a shed or garage to store it in. It was also really quick and easy to assemble.
As LO is quite tall (he's 3 and a half), we did find that he was quite big for the balance bike. The saddle is height adjustable and he has it on the tallest setting, but he managed to scoot along using his feet quite well and he will definitely get some good use out of the bike. I can tell already that it's helping him learn to balance and it will prepare him well for when he transitions on to a traditional pedal bike. He has a trike as well and as he learns the skill of pedalling on that, he's also learning how to balance when he uses the balance bike.
Our plan is to get LO a pedal bike for is 4th birthday, so the Xootz balance bike is a bit of an early Easter present for him- after all, at just under £38.00, I think it's an absolute bargain, especially if it encourages little ones to get outside and enjoying exercise in the spring sunshine. We've been using ours every day lately, and we have got lots more outdoors adventures planned with the balance bike over the Easter break too.
NB: We were very kindly sent the Xootz Balance Bike. All opinions and photos are my own. The price is accurate at time of writing.