- Balance bikes are where the cycling journey starts, for most kids.
- These bikes don’t have pedals or brakes, encouraging kids to learn the nuances of natural weight distribution when rolling along.
- But what if you are a parent who would like some deceleration control, when your kid is on a balance bike?
For decades the prevailing wisdom was that kids should start riding with training wheels.
But the problem with traditional training wheels is that they don’t teach kids anything about a bicycle’s balance dynamics. This defeats the point of learning to ride with confidence and triggers anxiety, when first getting on a 'proper' bike.
Balance bikes work
There has been a trend towards balance bikes during the last few years. Tiny two-wheelers that don’t have gears, cranks, chains, or even brakes.
On these balance bikes, kids have a low centre of gravity and can always put a foot down, to stabilise themselves.
The consensus is that balance bikes are a superior first riding experience for kids before transitioning to a bicycle with gears, cranks, and brakes.
Most of the balance bike’s simplicity is laudable, but some parents worry about the danger of setting their kids on a bicycle without brakes. Sure, a good pair of sneakers help kids scrub off speed, but they also ruin those expensive shoes after a few rides.
Making them better - with a rear brake
German engineers have now designed an aftermarket braking system for balance bikes. It’s called the MyStopy and is delightfully simple to fit and use.
Using the latest advances in electronic signalling technology, the MyStopy system is a simple friction brake that acts on the rear tyre tread, instead of the rim or hub.
It’s not complicated to attach, either. You only need to remove the seatpost, then slide the MyStopy into place, before securing it with the seatclamp.
No more having to jog along
MyStopy gives parents autonomous control of the balance bike’s speed and safety, for up to 100m of range. That means your kid can ride and explore, and the moment you think things are going too fast, or danger is approaching, you simply trigger the rear brake via remote.
The MyStopy’s remote control bracelet is USB rechargeable and has approximately 105 hours of battery endurance.
Made from 60% recycled materials, the MyStopy prices at R1050 and is sure to reduce the parenting stress when your kid wants to start learning how to ride.