Save Some Money & Make Your Own Balance Bike

Kazam balance bikes

An example of Kazam balance bikes (image courtesy of Kazam bikes dot com)

If you haven’t had a chance to check out the blog Chicargobike you really should.  It’s a great family biking blog written by a couple who ride around this great city with all their kids in tow on a variety of tandems and cargo bikes. They have a lovely blue Onederwater family tandem bike, as well as a Bakfiets box bike.  They’ve also come up with a way to turn used toddler bikes into balance bikes for their young ones who are ready to do some riding on their own.  You may be familiar with balance bikes – I first heard about them a couple of years ago, mostly from families that had lived in Europe.  Basically they’re toddler bikes without pedals, chains or cranks – the child sits on the bike with his or her feet flat on the ground and scoots forward or backward similar to a scooter.  They are an excellent way to get a child into the bike-riding habit without training wheels.  Companies like Like-a-Bike, Skuut, Strider, KaZaam, Kettler, and PV GLider all make balance bikes or “run bikes”  that will set you back anywhere from $100-$300.  JoRide Bicycles up in Northbrook makes a similar type of bike as an adaptive bike for older children and adults who have difficulties with the pedals on a standard bike. Or, you can follow the suggestions in this post from the family at Chicargobike and make your own toddler-sized bike out of an inexpensive used kids bike.

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