Almost every child loves to ride a bike – some want to start cycling at the age of three, while others find it fun to ride only later. But no matter what age your child shows an interest in cycling, it is always important that the bike is the right size for the child. This prevents unnecessary falls and increases the fun of cycling. With the table of bike sizes for children, you can see at a glance the size of the bike your child needs.
Whether you are a beginner or a young professional, it is always important that the bike size fits the child. And since our little ones are constantly growing, it takes a new bike of the right size every few years so that our kids can ride the bike safely and cheerfully.
As with children’s clothing sizes, age information is unreliable when it comes to children’s bike sizes. Because children of the same age can be very different in size. Our Kids Bicycle Size Table gives you the first indication of the bike size you need for your child. But beware, please read on, because the table of children’s bike sizes alone is not enough to find the right bike for your child.
What bike sizes are kids’ sizes?
Children’s bikes are usually all inch sizes between 12 and 24 inches. Bikes larger than 26 inches are adult bikes.
Table: suitable bike size for children
|Child’s age (in years)||child height (cm)||inseam (cm)||Recommended inch size||Recommended saddle height (cm)|
|1 – 1.5||85 – 91||33 – 36||Impeller only||Impeller only|
|1.5 – 2||92 – 97||37 – 39||Impeller only||Impeller only|
|2-3||98-103||40 – 43||12||42|
|3-4||104 – 110||44 – 47||12 – 14||47|
|4-5||110 – 115||48 – 51||12 – 16||52|
|5-6||116-121||52 – 55||14 – 18||55|
|6-7||122-127||55 – 58||16 – 20||59|
|7 – 8||128-133||58 – 60||18 – 20||64|
|8 – 9||134 – 139||61 – 63||18 – 20||67|
|9-10||140-147||64 – 66||20 – 24||72|
|10-11||148-151||68 – 70||24||75|
|11-12||152-157||71 – 73||24-26||78|
|13 – 14||164-169||78 – 80||26||83|
Step length determines children’s bike size
The age information in the table is really for guidance only and should never be your starting point for finding the right size for a kids bike. The actual size or inner leg length (inside) of your child is much better. This determines the correct bike size for children.
You should measure your child in relation to the individual bike size suitable for children on your own. Do not rely on the values in the table because this only contains average values. Each child has a different physique, so it is absolutely necessary to measure the height and stride length individually.
Measure the inner seam correctly
To measure your child’s inner leg you need the following tools:
- Tape measure or folding rule
- Medium sized book
Stand your child without shoes and preferably without pants (tights or leggings are no problem) with his back against the wall. Now pin the book vertically between the child’s legs so that the book is at a right angle to the wall in the back. Gently adjust the book (or let your child do it himself) so that it sits at the top of the crotch. Now measure the distance between the bottom and top edge of the book with a tape measure or ruler. The result is the length of your baby’s leg on the inside or the inside.
What does “inches” mean in a children’s bike size?
Child and adult bike sizes are always given in inches, even if we use a different length measurement in Germany. The inch unit for bicycles always refers to the diameter of the wheels. The more inches the wheels are, the bigger or bigger the bike will be.
Why you shouldn’t blindly rely on a ‘kids bike size’ table
Our chart and any other general kids bike size chart are always just a starting point for buying a new bike for your child. Even with the individual measurement of step length and your child’s size, you shouldn’t just “blindly” buy a bike for your child. The proper size of a children’s bike depends on a factor other than the inch size of the wheels. However, in bike size tables and many other estimates of children’s bike sizes, the inch size is always shown only as a bike size recommendation.
A bicycle consists not only of wheels, but also tires and tires. There will likely only be a slight difference whether thick or thin tires are fitted, but with kids on the border between two sizes, this can make a crucial difference.
Our expert advice: Always use the manufacturer’s kids bike size charts, or check them back if you’ve used ours or another kids bike size chart. If you have decided on the manufacturer, then in their tables you will find the actual sizes of this manufacturer. And it may turn out that your child needs a size smaller or larger for this brand. Some manufacturers even offer the same inch bike in different sizes.
Find the right bike with the right tire
The tire also plays a major role in determining whether a bike is a perfect fit for your child. Each brand has a different frame shape. Some wheels have a sporty cut, so your child sits leaning forward on the bike, eg B. Early Rider bikes. And there are bikes on which your child sits more upright (comfortably), such as the Woom or Btwin bikes. It sometimes happens that tire sizes differ between different manufacturers. Of course, this has an impact on the right bike size for your child.
Found the right bike size for your child? This is how it goes
Have you measured your child and taken the correct inch size from the list? With the right bike size for your child, the best thing to do is to go to your nearest bike shop and try different models with the right kid bike size for you. Your child should ride each bike several laps to feel how comfortable they are on the bike.
This is especially important for cyclists who are just learning to ride a bike. But also for kids who are changing from one bike size to another and also want a new model (eg on a mountain bike) or a different brand of bike.
Those who remain loyal to their brand, for example, always buy Woom brand children’s bikes for their children, can buy without a ride experience if they have correctly measured their child’s dimensions beforehand.
Children’s bike size: adjust the saddle correctly
In order for your child to ride his new bike optimally, it is important that you adjust the saddle height correctly. Anyone who is marginally familiar with this and who buys the bike in a specialty store can have it done directly by the professionals there.
Let me say this briefly: With the right size of a children’s bike and a properly adjusted saddle, the child should be able to put his feet on the ground (standing firmly on tiptoe is sufficient for older children). For best power transfer when pedaling, knees should be slightly more than a 90-degree angle when the ball of one foot is in the middle of the forward horizontal pedal. Not much but not less than 90 degrees either. The knee should be perpendicular to the center of the football.
By the way, most saddles can be moved not only in height, but also forward and backward. Play with these settings to find the perfect sitting position for your child.
Kids Bike Size: Adjust the handlebars correctly
On some bikes, the handlebars can also be adjusted in height or distance from the saddle. If this is possible with your model and you feel your child will ride better in a straighter position, for example, try different handlebar positions so your child is as comfortable as possible on their new, appropriately sized bike.
We wish you lots of fun cycling and always remember that kids should always wear a helmet (we are parents too) – safety always comes first. If you are not yet sure which brand of bike is right for you, take a look at our article “Any Beginner Bike”. These bikes did particularly well at the Stiftung Warentest. And if you are interested in a children’s e-bike, we also tested it for you.
Is your child not ready to ride a bike yet? In the video you will find tips for the wheel…
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Image source: Getty Images / sergeyryzhov
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