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Kids Bikes for the Holidays

How to choose the right Kid's Bike

Do you remember your first bike? Perhaps you remember it waiting for you under the Christmas tree with a big shiny bow on it. If you're planning on making dreams come true for a special child in your life this holiday season, make sure you read through our tips for choosing the right kid's bike!

Size Matters

The wheel sizes you'll see on kid's bikes are 12", 16", 20" and 24". You will want to make sure that your child can stand over the top tube of the bike with both feet firmly on the ground. You want your child to feel in control of the bike - not overwhelmed by it! Because of this, we do not recommend buying a bike that is large so that your child can "grow into it." Doing this can set your child back in terms of riding skills and confidence. A correctly sized bike will be much easier for your child to handle, much safer, and consequently, a lot more fun.

If your tot is just starting out with bikes, you may want to consider beginning her on a balance bike - a bike in its simplest form. On a balance bike there's no pedals or chain, just wheels and a frame. A balance bike helps teach 2- to 5-year-olds how to coordinate steering and balance and can make the transition to a big kid bike much easier.

Braking Matters

When looking for a kid's bike, the most important mechanical parts of a bike, overall, are the brakes.  You want your child to have control of getting his bike stopped.  Kids' bikes usually have either coaster brakes (brakes on the back wheel that are engaged by pedaling backwards), or handbrakes (brakes engaged by a grip on the handlebars that pinches brake pads against the rim of the wheel) or both.  Because of children's small hand size and limited hand strength, the smallest kids’ bikes have coaster brakes.  Until a child’s hands are large and strong enough to effectively use a handbrake, they should rely on coaster brakes.  However, a bike with both brake options offers opportunities to for kids to practice the next style of braking before moving up in bike size.

Weight Matters

While most adult bikes are about 20% of the rider's weight, this ratio isn't really found on kids' bikes. Ideally, though, your child's bike should be 40% of their weight. The lighter the bike, the better for your child. The weight of a bike is often a first indicator of the quality of the bike.

Geometry Matters

A child’s body position on the bike plays a large role in how well they can ride the bike. Bikes with a longer wheelbase (distance from wheel to wheel) tend to provide more stability and control for the rider. In addtion, pay attention to the handlebar position. Tall handlebars that sweep back, often found on big-box-store bikes, limit the rider's space and prevent them from applying more force on the handlebars. For the average young rider, a mid-rise handlebar is ideal.

The Bike Shop Advantage

You may be tempted to stop by the nearest box store for a kids' bike. He'll just outgrow it fast, right? Why not get a bike for a steal? We want to caution you though - most of kids' bikes are being sold at stores where the employees aren't familiar with important information like the difference between coaster brakes and side-pull brakes and which is needed. Similarly, they may not know very much about the quality of the bikes on the showroom floor. Another problem is that often these same employees assemble the bikes - with no formal training as bike mechanics - so even a good bike may be assembled wrong. Our staff is both knowledgeable and skillfully trained. You will leave with confidence that your child is both safe and on the bike that is best suited for him. Who can put a price tag on that?

Giant Animator C/B 12
$195.00
Nothing beats the feeling of your first two-wheeler. This little machine makes memories that young riders will never forget. With 12-inch wheels and removable training wheels, this is an express ticket to fun and freedom. The graphics will get him going, and the lightweight aluminum frame is built tough for neighborhood adventures.
Liv Adore C/B 12
$200.00
Her first two-wheeler. One of life’s great experiences, the colorful Adore makes it easy. A lightweight aluminum frame with a low stand-over height, 12-inch wheels, coaster brakes and fun colors make Adore the perfect riding companion for the driveway and beyond. This bike is fitted with an easy to use single-speed drive train and mini-rider settings. Designed for safety, stability, and comfortable pedaling. Complete with a bell that lets everyone know she’s on the move.
Liv Adore C/B 16
$215.00
Her first two-wheeler. One of life’s great experiences, the colorful adore makes it easy. A lightweight aluminum frame with a low stand-over height, 16-inch wheels, coaster brakes, and fun colors make Adore the perfect riding companion for the driveway and beyond. This bike is fitted with an easy to use single-speed drivetrain and mini-rider settings. Designed for safety, stability, and comfortable pedaling. Complete with a bell that lets everyone know she’s on the move. LIGHTWEIGHT ALUXX frame material and innovative fork design come together to keep her ride light and easy. INTUITIVE Singlespeed drivetrain, coaster brake, and smaller grip design let her learn to ride in a natural way. SAFE Easy balance tires, training wheels, and a low standover height allow for safe maneuvering. Why We Love It Small on size, big on fun. She’s ready for her first adventures with the colorful Adore. A protective chainguard keeps clothing and fingers out of harm’s way. Removable training wheels let her progress when the time is right. The colorful basket is the perfect place to carry her favorite toy.
Liv Adore 20
$225.00
Her first two-wheeler. One of life’s great experiences, the colorful adore makes it easy. A lightweight aluminum frame with a low stand-over height, 20-inch wheels, coaster brakes and fun colors make Adore the perfect riding companion for the driveway and beyond. This bike is fitted with an easy to use single-speed drive train and mini-rider settings. Designed for safety, stability, and comfortable pedaling. Complete with a bell that lets everyone know she’s on the move.
Specialized Riprock 12 Coaster
$229.99
With our Riprock Coaster 12, riding gets boiled down to its simplest element—fun. And to make sure of it, we designed the bike with tons of cool features that are easy for your little ones to use, like a coaster brake for simple stopping, wide 12x2.3" tires that increase stability and confidence, and tough components that will stand up to years of abuse. It's the perfect bike for your little ripper to start getting out on the trail with—we just wish that we had one when we were kids. - The premium A1 aluminum frame is lightweight and built to withstand the tough use by kids, while the geometry features an ultra-low standover that makes it easy for your little ones to fit on and grow with the bike. - Steel coaster brake is a reliable, easy to use brake perfect for safe stops and awesome skids. - 12x2.3" Rhythm Lite tires deliver tons of traction, comfort, stability, and fun over all types of terrain.
Specialized Riprock 16 Coaster
$249.99
With our Riprock Coaster 16, riding gets boiled down to its simplest element—fun. And to make sure of it, we designed the bike with tons of cool features that are easy for your little ones to use, like a coaster brake for simple stopping, wide 16x2.3" tires that increase stability and confidence, and tough components that will stand up to years of abuse. It's the perfect bike for your little ripper to start getting out on the trail with—we just wish that we had one when we were kids. - The premium A1 aluminum frame is lightweight and built to withstand the tough use by kids, while the geometry features an ultra-low standover that makes it easy for your little ones to fit on and grow with the bike. - Steel coaster brake is a reliable, easy to use brake perfect for safe stops and awesome skids. - 16x2.3" Rhythm Lite tires deliver tons of traction, comfort, stability, and fun over all types of terrain.
Giant XtC Jr 20 Lite
$255.00
Lightweight and trail-ready, this little dirt shredder gives them multiple gears to tackle hills and a durable build that will keep up with their adventures. Built with a lightweight aluminum frame, lots of stand-over clearance, and easy-to-use gears, this is the rigid version (no front suspension) of the XtC Jr. family. With 20-inch wheels and smooth-rolling tires that can handle the trail, it’s a fun and stable way to get started on the trail.
Liv Enchant 20 Lite
$255.00
Lightweight and easy to maneuver, Enchant puts her on a path to adventure. Designed to be light, agile, and easy to maneuver off-road. Fast-rolling 20-inch wheels and trail-ready tires make Enchant a fun, stable bike to help her build confidence and skills. Front and rear hand brakes provide powerful stopping power. With its easy-to-use twist shifters, she’ll feel excited and secure as she tackles new terrain.
Specialized Riprock 20 Coaster
$269.99 - $270.00
Riding a bike is all about freedom, so no kid should ever have to feel inhibited by where they can and can't ride their bike. With the Riprock 20 Coaster, however, your little one will be able to rip and ride on any terrain that they come across—especially with the easy-to-use coaster brake. You remember how it works from when you were a kid, right? Instead of hand brakes, they use the pedals to slow down. Nice and easy. Even better, this Riprock has wide, 2.8-inch tires that deliver traction, control, and confidence in spades, And with sturdy 20-inch wheels and a low standover that all but guarantees a perfect fit, you can rest assured that the Riprock 20 is the perfect recipe for fun that your family has been looking for. - The premium A1 aluminum frame is lightweight and built to withstand the tough use by kids, while the geometry features an ultra-low standover that makes it easy for your little ones to fit on and grow with the bike. - Steel coaster brake is a reliable, easy to use brake perfect for safe stops and awesome skids. - 20x2.3" Rhythm Lite tires deliver tons of traction, comfort, stability, and fun over all types of terrain.
Giant XtC Jr 24 Lite
$290.00
Lightweight and trail-ready, this little dirt shredder gives them multiple gears to tackle hills and a durable build that will keep up with their adventures. Built with a lightweight aluminum frame, lots of stand-over clearance, and easy-to-use gears, this is the rigid version (no front suspension) of the XtC Jr. family. With 24-inch wheels and smooth-rolling tires that can handle the trail, it’s a fun and stable way to get started on the trail.
Liv Enchant 24 Lite
$290.00
Lightweight and easy to maneuver, Enchant puts her on a path to adventure. Designed to be light, agile, and easy to maneuver off-road. Fast-rolling 24-inch wheels and trail-ready tires make Enchant a fun, stable bike to help her build confidence and skills. Front and rear hand brakes provide powerful stopping power. With its easy-to-use twist shifters, she’ll feel excited and secure as she tackles new terrain.
Giant Escape Jr 24
$315.00
Transportation, fitness, and fun. Escape is all these things and more. Choose your mission, hop on and go. With its lightweight ALUXX aluminum frame and smooth, stable 24" wheels, Escape is your ticket to on-road versatility. Ride city streets or country roads. For commuting, fitness, or just for the fun of it. Confident upright geometry and a wide range of gears give it a sporty ride quality. Whatever road or path you choose, Escape is always up for the adventure.
Specialized Hotrock 24
$400.00
Your little one might love to ride, but that doesn't mean they'll be doing Trans-Provence this summer. That's why Specialized made their Hotrock 24 with plenty of gear range to tackle the neighborhood hills, and enough front end travel to ride beginner's trails confidently. Of course, it also features a lightweight, yet durable, A1 Premium Aluminum frame that's designed to take a hit while they find their legs on the pump track. Chatter and bumps, meanwhile, are handled by the coil-sprung SR Suntour fork's 50mm of travel. Then there are a whole host of other components that are plenty tough enough to stand up to your little ripper, so you can rest assured that you'll be spending more time riding with your kid and less time waiting in line at the repair counter. - Tough, light, and durable, the A1 Premium Aluminum frame is built to stand up to years of tough riding. - SR Suntour suspension fork offers 50mm of coil-sprung travel that smooths out bumpy, rough terrain. - The 8-speed Shimano Tourney shifts smoothly and is tough enough for abuse.
Giant XtC Jr 1 Disc 24
$435.00
Big-time off-road performance in a small package. With an aluminum frame, front suspension and disc brakes, they’re ready to conquer the climbs and have fun on the descents. The disc-brake version of the XtC Jr. gives added control for more Advanced trails and conditions. With its lightweight aluminum frame, front suspension, and fast-rolling 24-inch wheels, he’s ready to roll on off-road adventures.
Specialized Riprock 20
$465.00
Traction, control, confidence, and fun—the Riprock 20 is the perfect bike for your kid to start hitting the trails. While there are many notable features that make the Riprock awesome, it's the 2.8-inch tires that provide the high degree of, well, shred-ability—delivering exceptional traction, control, and confidence for riding rough, off-road sections and city streets alike. And when you combine the big tires with sturdy 20-inch wheels, mechanical disc brakes, and seven-speed shifting, you have the perfect mountain bike to get your little Ripper out on the path to a lifetime of fun rides. - The A1 premium aluminum frame is lightweight and built to withstand the tough use by kids, while the geometry features an ultra-low standover that makes it easy for your little ones to fit on and grow with the bike. - Custom SR Suntour XCT fork features a sturdy construction and a coil spring that delivers 60mm of bump-absorbing travel. - The 2.8-inch Big Roller tires not only ensure exceptional traction, but also offer greater ride quality, stability, and loads of fun.
Specialized Riprock 24
$525.00
Dirt, street, trails—the all-new Riprock 24 doesn't fit neatly into any one box. It's purpose-built for fun, no matter how your little tike decides to ride it. With a pair of our ultra-wide, 2.8-inch tires and comfortable, confident geometry, smiles are going to be guaranteed. That's because the big tires and 24-inch wheels provide heaps of traction, control, and confidence over any terrain, while a bump-eating, coil-sprung suspension fork will make quick work of absorbing any rough stuff. Throw in a set of powerful, low maintenance mechanical disc brakes and a low standover that makes getting the perfect fit a total breeze, and you have yourself a bike that's going to make any kid want to rip and rock around the neighborhood till the sun goes down. - The A1 premium aluminum frame is lightweight and built to withstand the tough use by kids, while the geometry features an ultra-low standover that makes it easy for your little ones to fit on and grow with the bike. - Custom SR Suntour XCT fork features a sturdy construction and a coil spring that delivers 70mm of bump-absorbing travel. - The 2.8-inch Big Roller tires not only ensure exceptional traction, but also offer greater ride quality, stability, and loads of fun.
Salsa Timberjack 20
$549.00
Timberjack 20 is one of Salsa's plus-sized 3-inch-tire kids’ bikes designed to help turn your child’s daydreams into reality. Timberjack 20 will be there on family camp adventures and solo missions in the nearby woods, fostering independence all the way. The 6061-T6 heat-treated aluminum frame, modern-day componentry, and geometry specific to the size of the rider provide a durable platform for any quest. High-volume, 3-inch tires offer flotation, traction, and most importantly, added stability that can help smaller bodies stay upright in loose conditions. The Timberjack's 1 x 8-speed drivetrain gives your youngster the ability to handle hilly jaunts with the simplicity of a single twist shifter. Mounts on the forks allow extra water bottles or light gear with Anything Cages to encourage the sorts of rides that turn young explorers into lifelong ones, a gift of immeasurable value.
Salsa Timberjack 24
$559.00
Timberjack 24 is one of Salsa's plus-sized 3-inch-tire kids’ bikes designed to help turn your child’s daydreams into reality. Timberjack 24 will be there on family camp adventures and solo missions in the nearby woods, fostering independence all the way. The 6061-T6 heat-treated aluminum frame, modern-day componentry, and geometry specific to the size of the rider provide a durable platform for any quest. High-volume, 3-inch tires offer flotation, traction, and most importantly, added stability that can help smaller bodies stay upright in loose conditions. The Timberjack's 1 x 8-speed drivetrain gives your kid the ability to handle hilly jaunts with the simplicity of a single twist shifter. Mounts on the forks allow extra water bottles or light gear with Anything Cages to encourage the sorts of rides that turn young explorers into lifelong ones, a gift of immeasurable value.
Giant XTC Jr 24+
$600.00
Big tires, big fun. This junior-sized mountain bike has loads of traction and stability, giving young riders confidence to improve their skills and have more fun riding off-road. The XtC Jr. 24+ is designed to give young riders more confidence and control. Featuring a lightweight ALUXX aluminum frame with a low stand-over height and geometry designed for smaller bodies, it has stable handling to help ride tricky sections of trail. Its specially sized, smaller diameter 24-inch wheels come with extra-wide 2.8-inch tires, which add comfort and traction. The soft, cushy tires can be ridden with lower air pressure, giving the bike a smooth ride on rocky, bumpy trails. It also features a lightweight, easy-to-use 1x9 drivetrain, powerful disc brakes, and youth-sized components for added comfort and control.
Giant XtC SL Jr 24
$650.00
Wide eyes and a big smile, the natural reaction when he rolls down the trail. This kid-sized trail bike makes it easy, delivering a quality off-road experience that’s made specifically for young riders. Off-road performance isn’t just for adults. This youth-specific trail bike is designed to help kids progress and learn to love off-road riding. With its lightweight ALUXX alloy frame, fast-rolling 24-inch wheels, front suspension and disc brakes, it helps make the trail riding experience more fun than ever.
Giant TCX Espoir 24
$700.00
This speedy go-anywhere youth bike introduces a world of adventure. Designed to help young riders feel confident and in control, it’s versatile enough to ride on the road, in the dirt, or in a junior category cyclocross race. Built around a lightweight ALUXX aluminum frame with youth-specific compact geometry, the TCX Espoir 24 has a low stand-over height that gives smaller riders the confidence and control to go fast and have fun. Its 24-inch wheels, short-reach handlebars and powerful disc brakes give it a confident ride. Perfect for family day at the cyclocross races or backroad adventures, it can tackle road, dirt and everything in between.
Specialized Riprock Comp 24
$760.00
Big tires make for big fun, let alone a boost in confidence, control, and traction. And with our Riprock Comp 24, your kid is going to get all of the above at the hands of super fun 2.8-inch tires. This means that they'll be able to rip around and get their feet wet, trail riding with ease. And with powerful hydraulic disc brakes, they'll be able to do it safely, too. Add to this a full deck of Shimano shift components, plus a custom air-sprung fork, and you have the perfect mountain bike to get your little ones started on a lifetime of shredding. - The A1 premium aluminum frame is lightweight and built to withstand the tough use by kids, while the geometry features an ultra-low standover that makes it easy for your little ones to fit on and grow with the bike. - Custom SR Suntour XCT fork features 70mm of smooth, air-sprung travel for rough terrain, while a hydraulic lockout will make climbing significantly easier for your little one. - The 2.8-inch Big Roller tires not only ensure exceptional traction, but also offer greater ride quality, stability, and loads of fun.
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