The trials of finding a bike for your Tween…
We’ve all seen that lanky pre-teen riding a bike that’s too small or in the reverse a stretched out little girl trying to maneuver a bike that’s just too big. With the 26 inch wheel practically disappearing it’s become more and more difficult to fit and find bikes for your 9-14 year old child as they grow through the awkward stage from little one to taller than you! It’s even more difficult to sink tons of money into a bike that won’t fit in six months.
So, what‘s the solution? In my opinion, it’s the INBETWEENER bike. Online shopping at Bike Exchange can help you find a bike at a reasonable price for that awkward in between stage.
The INBETWEENER bike should probably be:
• $800 or less depending on your budgets…remember it may only be used one season.
• Have a “cool” look so your child doesn’t feel unstylish—this age group is usually into fashion and trends so know your child’s color preferences, music and clothing style. Sometimes a few additional accessories to a bike create an individual style that is super fun.
• The right size. Make sure the bike fits in order to keep your child interested in riding and safe.
• A new bike. This is an age of identity; get something that is uniquely theirs.
The beauty of online shopping for this instance is the ability to look at leftover last season bikes that may no longer be on your local bike shop floors. Great bike, never used but just last year. One simple search for a Giant Liv women’s bike under $800.00 brought up over 400 choices! You can narrow your search by knowing more about your child’s needs. Make a list of the top five most important things before involving your child in the online search.
• Size: fit is important, don’t get the wrong size. Talk to your local shops, measure your child so there won’t be disappointment when the bike arrives. A good way to start is knowing your child’s height and inseam. Most manufacturers have sizing charts on their websites you can use as a guide as well.
• Color choices: everyone has a preference. If the right bike isn’t the right color can you accessorize with new grips, baskets, bar tape to add their own style to the bike.
• Gearing needs: lots of gears are great in this age range, it give versatility and they can go farther, do more riding with more gears.
• Terrain they will be riding; will they be commuting to school, mountain biking, dirt jumps, cruising with girlfriends…knowing this will help narrow the choices.
• Price range: $1.00 -?? Remember the bike may not be used a long time.
Once you’ve determined the requirements involve your Tween in the search and decision making process. This will ensure that there won’t be disappointment when the bike arrives. These are sensitive years emotionally. Realistically your child is probably better at online searching than you are; so it will probably be faster
Order your bike of choice, make an appointment with your local bike shop to have the bike properly and safely built for your child once it arrives. Spend the time waiting for delivery planning the next adventure you and your child will take with the new bike…time goes by fast; so capture every bit of fun now…soon they will ride away from you!
Since you know this bike has a limited life span in your home, plan with your Tween so they understand it’s an INBETWEENER bike. Look together for organizations where the bike can be donated or for friends who might be hitting the same size a bit later who can use a bike once you decide it’s time for that “real big” bike.
Embracing the internet, involving your child and buying smart can help ease the difficult and awkward stage when what fits one day is suddenly too small the next. Worse than that, it might not be cool…so make it FUN, make it COOL, and make it their own!