According to the Slate article Down with Training Wheels, the new trend of balance bikes helps kids become better at riding bikes without training wheels. Because recently I learned what balance bikes were, I initially thought the idea sounded funny. Using a FirstBike balance bike showed me the benefits that a balance bike provided to my daughter. I reviewed the bike for a couple weeks and I focused on my daughter’s reactions to the product. While examining the product, I considered how the bike encouraged my daughter’s development of gross motor skills, which were important to me, as I was a certified K-6 teacher who had studied child development.
Review of the Balance Bikes
Because I felt passionate about encouraging my daughter’s development of gross motor skills, I was ecstatic to receive a product to help her learn to balance. Last year, I watched a group of kindergarteners learning to balance during their gym time at a private school, which made me realize how critical it was to help my daughter learn her balancing skills. Now, the balance bike was very effective. At first my daughter was frustrated that she had to work harder than she would on a bike with training wheels. After using the bike for a couple weeks, my daughter explained that she liked the bike because she had learned to balance on it and cruise for short distances.
As my daughter improved her coordination, she also learned patience. Cruising did take some work. Using leg muscles to move the bike required effort. I liked that my daughter learned the value of hard work as she applied her knowledge of bike riding. While raising my daughter, my mission as a parent is to teach her to be independent and hard working, which the bike helped her become.
Something that I liked most about the bike was its durable look. Made with a heavy, plastic material, the bike had a safe and fun look for kids. When I was getting used to the bike, my daughter and I left it laying on the floor several times and accidentally stepped on it. Never did the product feel weak or break whatsoever. I was very confident to have my daughter use the balance bike after seeing how strong it was. In the future, I will look forward to having my daughter continue to use the product and to eventually pass it on to her younger sister to use.
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