Best Bike For 2 Year-Olds: Complete Buying Guide

Fun fact, did you know that toddlers can actually learn how to ride a bike as soon as they can stand on their own two feet? Time and time again, the experience of first learning how to ride a bike is special! A totally new way of experiencing motion and we promise that your child will absolutely love it. Next thing you know they’re zooming around bursting with energy!

While children have boundless energy, you the adult, on the other hand, wish to have a fraction of that. Choosing the right bike for your child can be quite exhaustive and that’s where we give you a helping hand!

In this guide, we get into the Best Toddler Bikes specifically for 2-year-olds, featured in a quick and easy list with individual reviews for each bike. We have broken everything down, each bike’s features, specs, pros, and cons. Do yourself a favor and follow through!

Quick List for the Best toddler Bike by Age

  1. Best Overall: Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike
  2. Best Value: INFANS Balance Bike
  3. Best Premium: JOYSTAR Totem Bike
  4. Best For Girls: Schwinn Elm Bike
  5. Best Old-School: Radio Flyer Classic Red Dual Deck Tricycle
  6. Honorable Mention: XJD Kids Tricycles

Types of toddler bikes

Ride-on toys

The ride-on toys are great because they teach your toddler to push with their feet, and maintain balance while sitting and moving. Basically, bikes that keep things simple and help prepare them for the next step, balance bikes.

The most important features of ride-on toys are stability, steering, and seat height. Many children start using ride-on toys as toddler bikes before they are 1 year old. Although they will need a lot of assistance from you until they develop the limbs and skills to do it on their own.

Ride-on toys are great for indoor use and somewhat outside use as well. They are more likely to tip on non-smooth or no flat surfaces and the wheels will degrade more quickly. Always, always, always make sure to put on a helmet when riding outside!

Balance bikes

Balance bikes are just as they sound; they are bikes without pedals. These bikes are designed to help children learn how to balance, coordinate and steer a bike.  This makes the transition to typical pedal bikes easier. Since there are no pedals on these, it conditions your toddler to find their center of gravity. 

This of course evolves into them learning how to use and leverage their weight to steer, go forward, and stop. It’s such a cute sight to see them zooming around the same way Fred Flinstone does in the cartoons! They enjoy the speed and the self-confidence gets them ready to pedal faster!

A balance bike entirely hinges on finding the right size. If your toddler can’t reach the ground, then there’s no point to it.

Tricycle and Training wheels 

Tricycles are similar to training wheels, but they give your toddler much more stability as the wheels are bigger in the rear rather than two small training wheels on the sides of a big wheel. Stating the obvious here but tricycle bikes have 3 wheels.

Tricycle bikes are extremely durable, super easy to ride, and even you can help out. Because some of these bikes come with a handle at the back to help push your child. As far as 2-year-olds go, it is probably the ideal choice as they may not have the ability to use a balance bike yet. 

While balance bikes are great for teaching children how to balance independently, some 2-year-olds may struggle if they don’t have any experience. So do consider your child’s ability. 

Our Best Picks, starting with…

Best overall: Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike


Key Features and Specs:

  • Recommended Age Range: <2-3 years old
  • Bike Type: Balance Bike
  • Weight: 6.7 lbs
  • Wheel Size: 12 in
  • Frame Material: Steel

The Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike has the best blend of specs for the price tag. The great thing about the Strider 12 is that the seat can be extended to the height of your child, so it can accommodate children from 18 months to 5 years old, and the handlebar is also adjustable.  It is a lightweight balance bike that makes it ideal for every child.

Strider gives full control and makes your child have power, freedom, and most important responsibility when it comes to riding. Have them start young! The frame is quite sturdy and durable which makes it perfect if your kid likes to play in the dirt. For you, the adult, maintenance of the bike is easy as the tires are puncture-proof. 

Best of all, it comes in a variety of colors, so your little child can show off their bike and their favorite color. 

Pros:

  • Highly adjustable
  • Variety of colors & Unisex appeal
  • Durable & long-lasting design
  • Easy maintenance 

Cons:

  • *Cricket noise*

Best Value: INFANS Balance Bike


Key Features and Specs:

  • Recommended Age Range: <2-5 years old
  • Bike Type: Balance bike
  • Weight: 6 lbs
  • Wheel Size: 10 in
  • Frame Material: Steel

This Infans balance bike is a tremendous budget option to consider, especially when your child is growing up fast. It costs less than competitors but it also lacks some features that kids and you the adult enjoy. The seat can be extended and the handlebar is also adjustable to the height of your child, so it can accommodate your child. 

The straight frame is a bit more difficult to step over than other bikes. The front wheel can rotate 360 degrees so your child has to be careful not to let it switch on them. This Infans bike has mud flaps on these tires which might look aesthetically pleasing, but keep mud from kicking up. Granted while it can help your child stay clean, it might get in their bike training.

Pros:

  • Highly affordable
  • Highly adjustable
  • Variety of colors & Unisex appeal

Cons:

  • Loose Steering
  • Mud Flaps might get in the way

Best Premium: JOYSTAR Totem Bike


Key Features and Specs:

  • Recommended Age Range: <2-4 years old
  • Bike Type: Pedal Bike w/ Training wheels
  • Weight: 18.5 lbs
  • Wheel Size: 12 in
  • Frame Material: Hi-ten Steel

The JOYSTART Totem bike is a pedal bike that comes with training wheels. It’s a tremendous beginner’s bike that can grow with your child. This bike from Joystar comes in 12 inch wheels and is suitable for toddlers aged 2 to 4 and younger but also available with 14, 16, 18 inch wheels for older or taller kids.

The bike comes with removable training wheels to help your child get the hang of pedal bikes. The sturdy steel frame is capable of withstanding the bumps and rough handling. There’s a chain guard to keep your kid protected from getting caught while pedaling. The guard also keeps the chain safe and makes it last longer. But assembly is required when the bike arrives, which is a bit difficult if you aren’t mechanically inclined.

Pros:

  • Highly durable 
  • Multiple sizes to accommodate tall children
  • Training wheels included
  • Highly stable
  • Decals included in the package

Cons:

  • You’ll have to assemble it

Best For Girls: Schwinn Elm Bike


Key Features and Specs:

  • Recommended Age Range: <2-4 years old
  • Bike Type: Balance Bike
  • Weight: 11 lbs
  • Wheel Size: 12 in
  • Frame Material: Steel

The Schwinn Elm bike is a pretty bike that will appeal to your lovely little girl. The frame is made of an all-steel that will hold for a long time. It has a low profile so that even the tiniest girls can easily mount the bike and go riding. The bike frame also tapers towards the rear to help your girl avoid nipping their ankles. The bike has 12 inch wheels filled with foam for a smooth ride and best of all be maintenance-free.

The seat on this bike is easily adjusted using the quick-release seat collar so you can move the seat up as your little girl grows. The bike also uniquely offers a saddle handle on the rear seat that allows you to help by pushing, slowing, carrying, and storing the bike. 

Pros:

  • Saddle Handle
  • Long-lasting and robust design
  • Low profile design 

Cons:

  • Fixed handlebar
  • Tad bit heavy

Best Old School: Radio Flyer Classic Red Dual Deck Tricycle


Key Features and Specs:

  • Recommended Age Range: <2.5 years old
  • Bike Type: Tricycle
  • Weight: 3 lbs
  • Wheel Size: 12 in
  • Frame Material: Steel

We are kicking vintage-style as they did back in the day with the Radio Flyer Classic Red Dual Deck bike. This tricycle has a double deck and a bright red color for the classic look. It’s made of a durable steel frame and chrome handlebars, with a 12-inch front wheel and rubber tires.

Your kid will love cruising down the street in full Americana style. The tricycle has a controlled turning radius, preventing it from tipping over during turns. To warn people, your toddler can ring the included bell, practical and aesthetically pleasing.

Pros:

  • Special classy design
  • Manageable steering
  • Easy to ride 

Cons:

  •    Quirky seat adjustment

Honorable Mention: XJD Kids Tricycles


Key Features and Specs:

  • Recommended Age Range: 10-24 months up to 2 years old
  • Bike Type: 3-1 Hybrid 
  • Weight: 6 lbs
  • Wheel Size: N/A
  • Frame Material: Carbon steel

The XJD 3-in-1 kid’s tricycle is engineering cleverness. The XJD grows with your child by offering 3 ways to ride: tricycle, balance bike, and ride-on scooter.

This bike comes with fun detachable pedals, so once they’ve mastered pedaling on 3 wheels, they can learn how to balance on two wheels and then put it all together and reattach pedals to the 2 wheel design. This bike is built to teach your child and last a long time!

The XJD has a sturdy steel construction while offering full handlebar and seat adjustment so your little one can enjoy this special bike. The seat is also super comfortable.

The tires are made from a non-slip wear-resistant foam which offers strong ground traction, plus the widen enclosed wheels ensure safety. 

Pros:

  • Clever 3-1 design 
  • Detachable pedals and wheels for modularity
  • Unisex appeal
  • Long-lasting 

Cons:

  •  *Cricket noise*

Things to consider when choosing the Best Toddler Bike for 1 year-olds or 2 year-olds.

It’s only natural to get a bit more familiar with the differences between the toddler bikes. This way you can have a better understanding. Ultimately it will help you choose the best toddler bike and the most useful to your particular needs.

Size

Kids typically lack the physical maturity and strength necessary to ride a bike alone. You should seek a bike that is safe and simple to operate in order to have maximum safety and prevent any injuries.

The safety features you should look for in a bike for a 2-year-old are push handles, twin rear wheels, and foot brakes, to mention a few. Due to the removal of strenuous movement from play, balance bikes and tricycles are among the safest bikes. Your two-year-old can utilize a balance bike to become used to the dynamics before moving on.

Building your child’s confidence gradually and carefully fosters good associations, which makes them more receptive to bicycling in the future with safety as the top priority.

Safety

2-year-old kids generally are not strong enough to ride a bike by themselves. This means that you should look for a bike that is safe and easy to use.

Safety features like foot brakes, dual rear wheels, and push handles are something to pay attention to. Balance bikes and tricycles are among the safest bikes for your child. They can learn to balance and are slowly introduced to the pedals.

Building your toddler’s confidence safely is the best way to make learning to ride a bike more enjoyable and have a positive association. 

Weight

Weight is frequently grossly underestimated while selecting a bicycle. While it might appear light to you, the adult, a 2-year-old lacks the physical maturity to carry hefty objects. A bicycle that is excessively heavy for your child might cause balance and steering problems, which increases their risk of self-injury.

A good general guideline is that the bike should weigh around 35% of your toddler’s body weight.

great metric to base your buying decision on a bike.

Frequently Asked Questions on Bikes for 2 year-olds

Q: What kind of bike should a 2-year-old have?

A: For 2-year-old kids, a balance bike is the ideal first choice. Balance bikes don’t have pedals and may or may not come with a brake. Your child propels the bike by pushing their feet back on the ground to accelerate forward and slow down or even stop by simply planting their feet back on the ground.

Q: Can a 2-year-old pedal a bike?

A: Children can start riding pedal bikes from the age of two. Though, pedal bikes are heavier than balance bikes, and naturally more difficult to handle. All in all, once your child has learned to balance, then they can manage a pedal bike, as long as it’s a lightweight bike.

Q: What bike size does a 2-year-old need?

A:  Bikes with 12-14 inch wheels, generally speaking, are the optimal size for kids around the age of 2. If your child is particularly hefty then going for a 14 inch wheel bike is the best choice to have fun and be comfortable while riding.

The Finish line

We would highly recommend the Strider 12 Sport Balance Bike as the best overall because it has the most optimal blend of features, specs, and price. While highly affordable, the INFANS Balance Bike is our best value option if you are looking for the bare necessities. But if you want to step it up, then look no further than JOYSTAR Totem Bike, as it offers you premium features. Fret not because we have included other bikes that might be more to your kids speed!

Bikes for 2-year-olds serve one purpose, teaching your child about movement dynamics. It’s a stepping stone to typical bikes, perhaps as a parent you want to go on long rides with your child, getting them started young is a wise decision. It improves every positive aspect of your child!