Watching your little one ride a bike for the first time is one of the proudest moments you may ever have. In years gone by, it would start with a visit to the local dealer. There would have been a lot of time spent wandering through the warehouse to see the available options. In some cases, you would not find what you are looking for. There were instances where you would find the right bicycle, just not in the right size. Ordering it to be delivered in-store would have been the only alternative. There have been massive strides made in recent years. Not only can you complete the entire transaction online. You can also have it delivered to your home.
The incredible number of retailers available online gives you access to numerous options. You would still have the age-old problem of finding the perfect bike among the rest. Once you have gotten past the looks, you would then consider the practical side of things. In this article, we will present you with some incredible 12-inch bikes. They will be reviewed in detail. That will let you know what we like and what we think could have been better about each one.
In a hurry?
The best tip that we could give you would be to involve the child in the decision-making process. Let them make their own decision about what colour they want their bike to be. If there are any accessories on offer, guide them in deciding which ones to go with. You should make the information easy for them to digest by giving examples of when they may use each accessory. For a basket, it may be a case of highlighting that they can carry their toys with them. When it comes to the bikes, create a shortlist of 2-3 bikes before consulting the child. That makes it easier for them to choose.
I have decided to go with the Schwinn Elm Girls Bike for the top pick on this list. Schwinn has for an extended period been known for their consistency with manufacturing bikes. They are good at making safe and durable bikes, being able to guarantee your child’s safety to an acceptable extent. With this bike, they have managed to combine excellent style and efficiency. They have included their SmartStart technology which is no doubt a bonus. No other bikes on this list considered how difficult it might be to begin cycling for little children. They have designed this bike to be tough and light, which I think deserves praise. The bike comes with a high-quality paint job in different Lumo colours. They have also thought ahead and included a rear and front brake, meaning that they can practice riding adult bikes even from a young age. They have also included Specific Q-Factor technology which means everything is accurately made smaller to match a child’s physique well. As the child gets bigger, all you need to do is simply adjust the bike seat. It is the top pick because out of all the bikes on the list I believe it to be the most modern one. Schwinn has not disregarded how important it is to make a high-quality bike even if it is for a child. Girls will be sure to love and cherish this little bike when they see it. The only problem is that you might have to spend some time assembling it once you get the bike.
OUR TOP PICK
This bike designed by RoyalBaby is one of the top choices you can get on this list. Today we are discussing 12-inch bikes however this one does come in 12, 14- and 16-inch wheel sizes. The bike comes in 7 different colours meaning there is something for everyone’s taste. The bike comes 95% put together, meaning you will not have to set aside hours to set up your child’s bike. Once you receive the bike, the child should be cycling in no time at all. The bike has been designed with many safety protocols. This is fundamental in a child’s bike because they may not understand how to cycle a bike safely. The grips are designed for safety, and the bike comes with front and back calliper brakes. Children are notorious for trying to cycle too fast; hence a good braking system is essential. The tires are 2.4 Inches wide meaning that even for a beginner cyclist the bike should balance. The frame has been strengthened so the bike will not lose form even after a few learning crashes. The ride comes with training wheels which will no doubt assist any beginners in learning how to cycle. The ride is also comfortable as it comes with the RoyalBaby exclusive bearings.
- Easy assembly
- Front and back brakes
- Training Wheels
- Strengthened frame
- Specialised bearings
- No kickstand
- Quite heavy
Best 12-inch Bike For Boys and Girls
This bike, known as a gravel blaster, has been made by the company Dynacraft. It is an early beginners’ bike for children who wish to take up BMX racing eventually. The bike is one of the more affordable options that you can get on the list. It has not been designed to be a top tier 12-inch bike but rather something to get for children aged 3-4 who will just be cycling around in the yard. It comes with coaster brakes at the back but not at the front. The handlebar has a pad for added protection if your child bumps into something and hits their head on it. The Training wheels are fully adjustable meaning that when your child is now feeling more confident in their cycling ability, they can try cycling without training wheels. The bike has a lifetime guarantee on the frame and fork of the bike. This means that you are getting value for the bike and it can now be passed on to the next generation of kids. Parents will often buy a very durable bike and then not have to buy another for the next child they have. The bike will support children who are around 50lbs in weight which is quite a decent figure. The bike comes in trendy three colours and vinyl designs on them. The paint job is sure to be a hit with the children.
- Relatively affordable
- Lifetime guarantee of frame and fork
- Trendy paint jobs
- Handlebar pad for added safety
- Fully adjustable training wheels
- Only has rear brakes
- No kickstand
This cool little bike made by Schwinn is a great option to consider for your child. It is designed for girls between 3 and 4. It is a very stylish and cute bike that comes in some retro Lumo colours such as purple and pink. It is perfect for teaching your daughter how to cycle. The bike has Schwinn’s SmartStart technology meaning the bike is designed to get moving with minimal effort being applied. The frame has been made light and the gears placed in front of the young rider allowing them to generate enough power when they need to. Everything has been made slightly smaller to accommodate the little children. It comes with safety precautions such as both a rear and front brake system that requires the child to pedal backwards to stop. As the rider progresses and gains more confidence and strength, they can then switch to the handbrake placed on the pedal. The seat is adjustable meaning that your child will not easily outgrow the bike. You can make adjustments to make it bigger to accommodate a growing youngster. Schwinn has also added Kid Specific Q-Factor technology. This means that the pedal positions will accurately match the smaller size of your child’s hips. This will stop them from overexerting themselves.
- SmartStart technology for easier cycling
- Front and rear brake as well as the hand brake
- Adjustable seat saddle for growth
- Kid Specific Q Factor technology
- Stylish paint finish
- Requires a bit of assembly
- Lightweight but not strong
The Joystar 12-inch bike is one of the better alternatives on the list for girls. The bike is both challenging and easy to cycle, meaning that you won’t feel short-changed on the bike’s durability. It is designed only for kids and comes with two small training wheels. The mixture of colours used to paint the bike stands out very nicely. It does not appear to be of low quality. The bike seat can easily be adjusted without any tools meaning that as your child grows, they can still use their favourite little bike. The training wheels come off, meaning that the young rider can cycle on their own without any assistance when ready. Many bike companies consider that young cyclists may not have enough strength for a hand brake; hence, they add the chain’s reverse brakes. This bike comes made from premium steel. That is why I mentioned earlier that it is tough and worth the money. The bike will be able to suffer any bumps in the road quite well. To prove this, Joystar has included a lifetime warranty on this feature which always adds peace of mind to a customer. The bike comes with a safe chain guard meaning that the chain won’t be stolen easily whilst the child is playing in the park. Lastly, it comes with a DIY decal which is a nice little inclusion allowing your child to add that personal touch to their bike.
- Premium Steel Frame
- Safe Chain Guard
- Adjustable Saddle
- Removable training wheels
- Minimum maintenance bike
- No safety pad on the handlebar
- No dirt fenders
The Magna Catapult is another cool little bike that has been built for dirt biking and BMX purposes. Made by a brand, we spoke about earlier (Dynacraft) it is one of the middle to low-end options that work well for first-time riders. The bike comes with a sturdy BMX frame and a deluxe paint job. This will make the bike more aerodynamic on the trail allowing your child to learn how to cycle faster. The high-quality paint job means that the paint is unlikely to get chipped or fade away when cycling in the gravel. This may end up leaving the bike looking old and dilapidated after only a few riding sessions. The brakes are only at the rear and are made from coasters. Seeing as this is a BMX bike, it might have been better for there to be a handbrake given the speeds that BMX racing requires. The training wheels are removable, so you won’t have to worry about buying a new bike when your child is ready to cycle without them. There is a handlebar pad that will protect your child in the case of any crashes whilst they cycle. The seat post is adjustable for growth which is an added benefit. The bike comes in 2 different colours meaning there is not much to choose from but bear in mind they are both high-quality paint jobs.
- High-quality paint job
- Removable training wheels
- Handlebar pad
- Adjustable seat
- Slip-proof grip
- No hand brakes
- Only two colours to choose from
The last option on this list is going to be popular among the kids. This epic spiderman themed bike is manufactured by Huffy bikes. It is a quick-connect bike that can be assembled in minutes without having to face excessive DIY. The bike is designed for young children between the ages of 3-5 supporting a height of between 37-42 inches. The bike has both front and rear brakes making it much safer than the single side brake bikes. It is essential because as children begin to get older, they will need to progress to bigger bikes. Adult bikes often do not have reverse brakes, meaning your child will eventually have to learn how to brake with a hand brake. The bike comes with a spiderweb on the handlebar which is cool for a young child. It is not the safest option, however, with a pad being preferred. Kids hit their heads on handlebars more commonly than bike companies care to admit. The bike does come with a protective chainguard meaning that they won't bruise their ankles whilst they cycle. You will also undoubtedly appreciate the lifetime warranty on the bike’s frame made from premium durable steel. That makes the product of a much higher quality and worth the price.
- Cool spiderman design
- Front and rear brakes
- Quick connect design for easy assembly.
- Adjustable seat
- Thicker tires
- No handlebar padding
- Training wheels do not detach.
We have given you a lot of information about several bikes. The buyer’s guide is designed to make it easier for you to process it. It tackles some key questions that may have come up as you read the product descriptions.
What age is a 12 inch bike for?
A 12 inch bike is commonly ideal for children between the ages of 3-5. That range will vary from one place to another. In parts of the world where people are notably taller than other places on average, the age range could be lower. The Netherlands comes to mind for this. You will also find that this number would be lower in places such as Alaska where people are generally shorter.
How tall should you be for a 12 inch bike?
Height is a better metric than age for measuring bike sizes for individuals. A 12 inch bike is suitable for children between the height of 2'10"–3'4" (85–100 cm). If they are shorter, they will have challenges reaching the pedals. When they are taller, they will become uncomfortable on the bike. Their knees will be close to the handlebars when they pedal while seated.
Can a 3 year old pedal a bike?
Yes. A 3 year old can pedal a bike. It is not as universal an answer as it may initially seem. What you are looking for is a child with the presence of mind to follow instruction and do something continually. The average three year old can do this. They may not be able to do it for a long time, but they indeed can get started on their cycling. The only thing to consider would be whether or not to get training wheels. They are perfect for building confidence as the child gets the result immediately.
Considering the bikes, we have reviewed in this article, which one would you and your little one go with? Perhaps the more important question would be whether you were able to reach an agreement. Often, children will choose things that we know are not right for them. They may be right for that instance, but we know that they will soon change their minds. The difficulty becomes making them see reason. Most children will forget about it all once they have their shiny new bicycle. The key thing to get right is the size of the bike. There are few things more disappointing than having a bike that is not the right size for you. A child will not have enough patience to see the bike returned to be replaced with the right size.
Accessories are a great way to sweeten the deal. Pick some lovely ones to add to the purchase. They do not necessarily have to be sold together with the bike. You can buy them separately. You child will outgrow the bike, so you want to be mindful of this from the get-go. If you are in doubt, we highly recommend checking out the Schwinn Elm Girls Bike, which is our top pick. It is available in various lovely colours. Your child will find one that they like. Take some time to read the reviews, including the pros and cons to see what it offers.