Balance bikes are very effective in developing kids’ balancing skills. However, some people still prefer training wheels. Although both have their advantages, it is not a good idea to use both of them together.
A stabiliser is used for balancing a pedal bike while the rider is pedaling it. However, a balance bike does not have pedals. It is driven and balanced by the feet of the rider. This is why a balance bike does not require a training wheel. Besides, putting stabilisers will reduce the speed and effectiveness of balance bikes.
I hope this answers the question. I am going to discuss about the issue in details –
Is it possible to put a training wheel to a balance bike
In some of the balance bikes I have found space for adding training wheels. However, on some balance bikes there is no space for adding training wheels.
For this reason, before you take any attempt, check the rear wheel part and see if there is a space for adding a stabiliser in that place.
There are many convertible balance bikes on the market which can be used as pedal bikes as well as balance bikes. Often these bikes come with training wheels which can be easily added to the convertible balance bike.
Having said that, I think it is not a good idea to put training wheels on balance bikes. I believe even in those convertible bikes, training wheels are provided for using in the pedal bike mode only.
Why you should not put training wheels on balance bikes
The balance bike will fail to develop your kid’s balancing skills
Balance bikes are the modern way of developing children’s balance in an effective manner. Kids push the ground with their feet to drive balance bikes. Once the bike starts to move, they lift up their feet from the ground and the bike keeps going.
While the bike is moving, they have to focus on keeping the balance. If they lose their balance, they just touch the ground with their feet. At the early stages they can move less distance without touching the ground. As time goes, their balancing skills develop and they can travel more distance without touching the ground.
This is how the balancing skills are developed.
If you put training wheels on a balance bike to keep the balance, the kid will have to put less or no effort to keep the balance. As a result, his balancing skills will not develop like a normal balance bike.
Feet are more effective to keep the balance than training wheels
As you already know, training wheels maintain the balance of the bike. When the bike tilts to some extent, training wheels are there to support the bike.
However, on a balance bike the kid does not have to pedal and his feet are free. As a result, he can easily touch the ground with his feet to support the balance of the bike. This is more efficient than using a training wheel.
For this reason training wheels are not required on balance bikes. The rider’s feet will do the work more effectively.
Training wheels will reduce the flexibility of balance bikes
Balance bikes are designed to be lightweight. Kids are supposed to move from one surface to another with it.
Unlike a bike with training wheels, with a balance bike it is easier to go through rough surfaces or grasses. Kids like to do adventures with their balance bikes.
The weight of a balance bike should be lower than 30% of a child’s weight. In the market you will find balance bikes weighing around 4 lbs. [link] Well there are some balance bikes with higher weights, but a balance bike’s weight is always much lower than the weight of the same sized bike.
Adding a training wheel will add extra parts and weight to the balance bike. Instead of helping, the extra training wheels will be an extra load for the kids.
It is easier for kids to go through uneven surfaces with balance bikes, but when training wheels are added to them it will be harder for the kids to move through uneven surfaces.
Besides, a child cannot execute turns very well with a training wheel. On the other hand a balance bike gives the child flexibility to execute the turns with ease.
It will reduce the speed and freedom of a balance bike
As the flexibility goes down and weight of the bike goes up, your child will have less freedom with his balance bike. He will not be able to enjoy the adventure that he could have done with his balance bike.
Balance bikes give kids confidence when they move at the same speed independently with their parents. Adding a training wheel will reduce the speed and freedom. As a result they will not be able to enjoy the confidence boost.
Balance bike or training wheel – which one should you use
The main purpose of balance bikes is to develop the balancing skills of the kids. On a balance bike a kid does not have to focus on pedalling. He just focuses on one thing and that is balancing.
For this reason a balance bike is the best option to teach your kids to ride bikes. Balance bikes make the learning process enjoyable and effortless.
However, once your kid is ready, you will have to buy a pedal bike for him. This is not a good option for people who are on a budget.
On the other hand, although the pedal bikes with training wheels are not a good option for developing your child’s balance, they can be used even after your kid learns to ride a bike. Just remove the training wheel and you are good to go.
For this reason, my advice is, if you are on a budget you may go for a bike with training wheels. Otherwise, buying a balance bike for your kid will actually be a good investment.
With convertible balance bike you will be able to check both options.
Look at this convertible balance bike. It can be used as both a pedal bike and a balance bike. The good thing is, with these convertible bikes you may do your experiment.
You may use it as a bike with stabiliser. If you want you can use it as a balance bike.
Moreover, in many of these bikes, you will be able to add a training wheel to the balance bike if you want to do your research.
You may check in details on Amazon about this convertible balance bike.
Let me know in the comment section.
In many balance bikes it is possible to put a training wheel on it. However, it is not a good idea to add a training wheel to a balance bike.
Putting stabilisers on balance bikes will reduce speed, flexibility and effectiveness of the balance bike.
You may either use a balance bike or a pedal bike with training wheels. However, balance bikes are more effective in developing kids’ balancing skills.
Last but not the least, you may buy a convertible balance bike which can be used as a balance bike as well as a pedal bike with training wheels.
In many of the convertible bikes, you can put a pedal on the balance bike mode. Although it will not be a good idea.