Kick scooters seldom get the credit they deserve. Besides being an amazingly simple and efficient way to move around, they come with an impressive slew of health benefits. Riding a kick scooter makes for an effective way to do cardio, burn fat, and strengthen the often-neglected glutes.
Are kick scooters equally beneficial for toddlers, though?
The answer is a resounding yes. Kick scooters help toddlers develop gross and fine motor skills, strengthen the muscles responsible for balance, and so much more. But you have to approach buying a toddler scooter seriously.
Our guide will help you do just that.
More on the Benefits of Using Toddler Scooters
There are strong reasons why kick scooters are so beneficial for toddlers.
As such, toddler scooters help develop:
- Coordination and balance Scooters are very conducive to boosting coordination at almost any age. And toddlers are no exception. Having to simultaneously push off with one leg and balance with the other teaches toddlers how to use their weight.
- Motor skills Riding a scooter helps a toddler improve gross motor skills – the ability to coordinate large muscle groups of the body. It also enhances fine motor skills – being able to synchronize the movements of one’s hands and fingers with the eyes.
- Can-do attitude Scooter is relatively easy to get the hang of quickly. And succeeding in learning a skill early helps a toddler acquire confidence in being able to accomplish things. This in turn fosters a productive can-do attitude towards life.
- Regard for safety Scooters aren’t as injurious as bicycles. But teaching toddlers how to ride them automatically involves making sure they learn a few basic safety rules. This helps ingrain the feel for safety from an early age.
As you see, children have a lot to gain from making friends with the kick scooter at a young age.
When is it okay for a toddler to start riding a scooter?
Is Your Toddler Prepared to Ride a Scooter?
There are no strict prerequisites for riding a kick scooter other than practicing common sense. A child must clearly be able to walk to begin learning how to ride a scooter. Most toddlers meet this condition at some point between 2 and 3 years of age. And most can start riding a scooter from then on. But not all children.
Some kids develop their motor skills at a slower pace. As a result, they may not be able to get comfortable with riding a scooter until they are 7 years old. Some children may even struggle with learning how to ride a kick scooter past this age. And there’s nothing wrong with that. We all differ in how fast we develop.
In a nutshell, every physically capable toddler who has started walking steadily can begin learning how to ride a scooter. Hardly any harm will be done, even if your child doesn’t manage to get the hang of the scooter quickly. You can always opt for the kick scooter models that are specially designed to be easier to ride for toddlers.
In fact, your child will be better off learning on a toddler scooter from the get-go.
Let’s see what types of toddler scooter you can select from.
Choosing Between 2-Wheel and 3-Wheel Scooters
What type of scooter will be a better fit for your toddler? That’s the key decision you’re going to make.
You have a choice between two major types:
- 2-wheel scooters This is a time-tested classic with bicycle-style steering. And it’s also the hardest for a toddler to master. Riding it requires good command of muscle groups involved and an ability to use body weight to maintain balance. As a result, 2-wheel scooters aren’t ideal for kids with slower motor development and toddlers who have just begun walking.
- 3-wheel scooters This type has a number of possible setups. Some utilize two wheels in the front and one wheel in the rear, while others employ a reverse arrangement. And as some of them feature bicycle-style steering, others have lean-to-turn steering. Models with two wheels in the front and bicycle-style steering provide most stability. Other models need more finesse.
Which one should you choose? It all depends on what your toddler is like. If your child has just started walking, a 2-wheel scooter can be very frustrating and discouraging. Likewise, 3-wheel scooters don’t have much challenge to offer and aren’t very fun for older kids to ride.
There’s something else to consider before buying, though.
How Large a Toddler Scooter Should You Pick?
Toddler scooters differ in size. And their overall dimensions are in direct proportion to the size of their wheels. While there’s a variety of scooter wheel sizes out there, they all boil down to two simple categories: smaller wheel scooters and larger wheel scooters. Which one is better?
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each type:
- Smaller wheel size Toddler scooters with smaller wheels have more compact dimensions and are easier to maneuver. This makes them superior for kids who are only starting to learn. For the very same reasons, though, they are more injurious. Once toddlers develop a feel for such scooters, they become tempted to ride them recklessly.
- Larger wheel size By contrast, scooters with larger wheels are harder for toddlers to push, steer, and bring to a stop. They are also more difficult for a child to learn. Their larger build, however, makes it difficult to ride recklessly. And it also keeps the scooter stable on uneven surfaces.
The size category you choose will depend on your toddler’s physical ability and temper.
Where does this leave us?
Toddler Scooter: A Meaningful Fun for Your Child
Choosing a kick scooter for your toddler isn’t that hard. But since your child’s development and safety are at stake, approaching it seriously is well worth the effort. Chosen carefully, a toddler scooter becomes just the kind of fun you want your kid to enjoy – meaningful and safe.