Strider is an American manufacturer of children’s balance bikes. As a new dad, my interest was of course immediately aroused when the manufacturer approached me and asked if I would like to take a closer look at one of their soon-to-be-available models.
Strider Sports International Inc. was founded in 2007 in the USA and sells balance bikes for children. vilano diverse 3.0 review with over 2,000,000 bikes sold, the South Dakota company has to do something damn right and I’m thrilled to share my first Strider experiences with you.
Strider 12″ balance bikes – for children from 1 year
I chose the Strider Baby Bundle. On the one hand, this includes a children’s balance bike with 12″ tires and a platform that turns the balance bike into a rocking bike. Strider states that the bundle is optimal for kids aged 6 – 24 months. The 12-inch version of the bike should be easy to use up to an age of about 3 1/2 years.
Realistically, even kids at the age of a good year can take a seat on the Strider and train their sense of balance, have fun, and seesaw what they can. Parents should consider for themselves whether the child’s motor skills and sense of balance are sufficient to hold on to the bike themselves. Otherwise, it is just “Actively support by holding on” or wait until the child’s stage of development allows a ride on the machine.
Similar to a rocking horse, the kids then sit on a rather low saddle and this should – at least in my theory – also have a positive effect on unwanted falls, as the fall height is not as high as with some rocking horses due to the low seat. In the best case, of course, no one falls or the parents are close to it and can avert the worst. Certainly, a carpet or a soft surface makes more sense for the first moments on the Strider than practicing on tiles or stone floors.
For my nine-month-old Lütten, it is actually still a bit early, he can not sit independently at the moment.
The concept and idea behind Strider are brilliant. With the help of the Rocking Base, you first have a rocking horse in bike style. When the child is a little older, the rocking wheel turns into a balance bike in no time. Parents thus get two products in one and I find this idea good and sustainable. Ideally, the bike is therefore popular from about 1 year to 3 years and prepares our child in the best possible way for scooter and bicycle riding.
Details about the Strider 12″ wheel
Weight: 3 kilograms
No tools are required for assembly
Tire size: 12 inches, solid rubber
Available in: blue, green, yellow, red, and pink
load: 27 kilograms
Strider Baby Bundle – Cooler than a rocking horse
Freshly unpacked, the Strider wheel leaves a rock-solid, safe impression. I could not detect sharp edges and another potential for injury at first glance. I opted for a bright green version, in addition to gender red and blue, the chic speedsters are also available in yellow and pink.
Right away, I like the fact that the impeller can be adjusted in height without difficulty. The saddle can be moved quickly – and without a mounting kit – to the desired position. In the end, I only had to attach the handlebars, which is done in no time thanks to the clamp system. A longer Seatpost is also included in the scope of delivery. As expected, our son will be quite big, which is why the pole will probably be used by us at some point.
The Rocking Base
To turn the wheel into a rocking bike, you either need the Baby Bundle or you buy the required Rocking Base separately. This is a pedestal, which you attach with a total of eight screws to your 12″ Strider and transform the small wheel into a rocking horse in a motocross look.
The base and the mounting parts also make a very valuable impression. I definitely don’t have any worries that the impeller and pedestal will detach from each other without the help of tools.
Of course, I couldn’t wait after the assembly and got the little one used to his new racehorse on a trial basis in the presence of his mother. The enthusiasm was still in a tolerable framework, it probably takes a few days or even weeks until the first wild swing part is rocked away.
The construction went by in no time and I’m just a very proud dad. Take a look again at this point when the first Strider tests have been completed by the son.
What I noticed, the wheel has no stand. I think the kids are also more likely to take off the balance bike than to turn it off carefully – so I don’t necessarily see the lack as a disadvantage. However, even in my dream, I would not have the idea of letting the little man go somewhere alone at the age of three.
Remember to give your children a suitable helmet for the rides!
Strider 14″ balance bikes – For children from 3 years
In addition to the variant I have chosen, Strider also has 14-inch tires on offer for older children. The recommended age for the Strider 14″ is between 3 and 7 years, so it comes a little prematurely for our child. Nevertheless, I would like to give an outlook on what children can expect here.
The Strider 14 inch wheel is available as a Sport and as a Pro version. In the 14″ inch Sport variant there is already a conversion kit to the children’s bike. Simply mount the pedals on the Strider and in no time the balance bike becomes a children’s bike. That’s pretty cool. Because instead of buying a balance bike and children’s bike, a product that simply adapts to the age and mobility of the child is sufficient.
However, classic 14 inch pneumatic tires are used here and there is the above-mentioned possibility of conversion into a bicycle. Since everything here is a bit bigger, the bike weighs about 5.7 kilograms without pedals.
Details about the Strider 14″ wheel
Weight: 5.7 kilograms (without pedals)
No tools required for assembly
Tyre size: 14 inches, pneumatic tyres
Available in: blue, green and pink
load: 36 kilograms
I also think it’s good that Strider also offers accessories and replacement products in its own online shop. A new saddle, new grab handles, wheels and even a snow kit are available. Plus, there are pretty cool Strider jerseys and gloves for the perfect Strider look. Owners of a 14 inch Strider Balance Bike can order the pedals later, owners of a Strider Sports Bundle have already included the set in the scope of delivery.
Especially cool: The 12 inch Strider can be converted into a snowmobile. The required runners are available on the US side of the manufacturer and make the vehicle usable even in winter, which massively increases the fun factor.
Strider Events – They do something!
In addition to the actual product “balance bikes for children”, manufacturer Strider offers something that clearly distinguishes it from other manufacturers. A large community and joint events. I think the idea is so brilliant that I would like to tell you about it here.
At numerous events that take place worldwide, kids can compete with their Strider bikes and get to know other Strider kids here.
On the other hand, experiences of success certainly strengthen the self-confidence of the little racing drivers and you experience something that you can proudly report about later in the kindergarten or kindergarten. The events are primarily about shared (successful) experiences and the exchange and meeting of like-minded people. And I think that’s terrific. Sure, there will be parents who shy away from the competition thoughts, that’s ok.
With “Strider Exploring”, Strider has already established a series for this, at least in the USA, in which the kids are encouraged to discover their environment. Far from the idea of competition, the little ones drive in extraordinary places, such as on the flight deck of the USS Hornet (an aircraft carrier). Crazy, right? Here I am really curious to see whether this ambitionism will continue to be lived in Germany.
If you don’t like the discovery and if you don’t feel like racing together, then Strider has another event format for the kids in your luggage. The Strider Adventure Zones are local events to romp around and have fun. Here small obstacle courses are set up and interested parties have the opportunity to convince themselves of the bikes, as here you can also test what you can do.
Sustainability – Kindergartens receive support
In the U.S., Strider is also making efforts to equip kindergartens with balance bikes and bicycles. I have only skimmed over the part, but I buy the company to stand up for child development. If you want to know more, you can inform yourself on the US page of the provider.
What does Stiftung Warentest say about the Strider?
Stiftung Warentest has also tested the small 12″ speedster in the December 2018 issue. In the individual categories of driving, safety, and durability and handling, there were grades between GOOD and SATISFACTORY. In the handling,women hybride bike it was only criticized that a very low seat can lead to the fact that the child with the seat post can get stuck on the ground, for example, if he drives over a curb. I find the distance of the pole to the ground to be satisfying and see it a bit more optimistic than the test experts.
An inquiry with the manufacturer showed that Strider Germany will only deliver models with harmless handles at the market launch.
The delivered Strider Baby Bundle fully meets my expectations. A cleanly processed children’s balance bike, which is used by a base station, has already from about 12 months as a rocking horse – the replacement and also looks cool. Strider itself is not only defined by the sale of its products but also creates numerous experiences for children and parents and also offers projects in the field of social commitment.