Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Of Balance Bikes and Trikes

Zilla is 4 yrs. old
Mega is 18 mo. old

If the weather is nice (not raining or snowing) Mega and Zilla love to spend some time each day on their bikes. Meg is on her 2nd hand-me-down trike as the first one is pretty much worn out.  It went through 4 very active boys before becoming hers.  The trike in this picture is her "new bike" (her words/signs).
Both kids are on the tall side for Japan so they actually run into problems with trike size.  Zilla never really learned to pedal because his legs were too long by the time he reached the age where he would be able to pedal!
A year ago we knew Zilla needed to move to a bigger bike.  He spent the summer mastering the balance bike / strider.  This is basically a little bike (his has a hand break) with no pedals.  The idea is that if the kids can learn to balance first, then, after they have mastered the balancing act, learn to ride with pedals.  
Since Mega and Zilla are just about 3 years apart in age we opted to get a balance bike which will be passed on to Mega when Zilla is ready to move up to a bigger, pedal bike.  There are balance bikes which can be converted to regular bikes but since the ones sold in Japan are small we are pretty sure Zilla would outgrown it in no time!

As you can see Zilla can pick up some speed on his bike so normally he wears a helmet... especially if he is going farther than down this side street.  While we've been accident free so far I know the day will come when he tries to do tricks!

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