Kids Bike Size Chart

Author: GE

Dec. 06, 2023

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Tags: Transportation

While height charts are a good starting point, a test ride can be a great aid in choosing the right size bike for your child. To help ensure a comfortable fit, here are a few key things to watch out for when putting a bike to the test:

 

Take a Seat – When your child is sitting on the seat of the bike, the balls of their feet should comfortably touch the ground. If not, the seat height is too high, which could make stopping more difficult.

 

Level the Pedals – While pedaling, there are two potential problems that could arise if the bike is the incorrect size. The first is your child’s knees bumping into the handlebars. This is a sign that the bike is too small. In contrast, if your child cannot pedal smoothly and looks to be hyperextending their legs, then the bike is too large.

 

Set the Bar – Standing up, your child should be able to straddle the bike’s middle bar with their feet flat on the ground. With a correctly sized bike, there should be 1" to 2" of clearance. If the bike has to be tilted to fit under your child’s legs, it is too large.

Further reading:
Why do we need pipe sleeves?

 

Handle with Care – Your child should be able to comfortably steer the handlebars while only slightly bending their arms. If they are overstretching, it can be another sign that the bike you’re looking at is too big.

Our #1 kids bike sizing tip 
Choose a bike based on current fit as well as future growth. Kids should be able to ride their new bike right away— waiting too long to grow into it can cause a loss of interest. The bike should accommodate your child as they get taller, including the ability to raise the seat height and/or handlebar stem.

Start with their height
Start off by measuring your child’s height. Have them stand tall with their back against the wall, looking straight ahead. Use a pencil to mark the wall above their head.

Get their inseam measurement
Save some time and quickly take their leg inseam measurement, too. Standing in the same position, have them hold a book between their legs with the book’s spine meeting their crotch. The distance from top of the spine down to the floor is the leg inseam.

Matching leg inseam length to bike size ensures that your child can comfortably stand over the bike. Confirm there is about 1” or 2” of space between the top tube and their crotch while straddling the bike. This way, they can easily get on the bike or hop off the saddle in case of a sudden stop.

Take confidence into account
Consider your child’s riding ability to check if they can handle a larger wheel size. If they are close to the next bike size, they are probably ready to size up— even more so if they are already strong riders that feel confident making turns and stopping quickly.

Kids Bike Size Chart

Kids Bike Size Chart & Fit Guide - Calgary

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