How to Transition From Balance Bike to Pedal Bike Without Training Wheels

September 28, 2012

I honestly wasn’t fully convinced that this could truly be done easily – but it was *SO* Easy!  My 3 1/2 year old is now biking on his Performance Bike, after spending 1 summer riding his balance bike.

How we transitioned from the Balance Bike to a Pedal Bike in ONE DAY with No Tears! My 3 1/2 year-old was riding with no training wheels, and keeping up with the big kids!

Here’s How:

We started with a balance bike.  It took him a little while to get used to the bike – and he spend several weeks just ‘walking’ the bike, much like our youngest is doing below.


After a while, he started sitting on the bike – and pushing himself around a bit better, and eventually balancing so well that he was able to go down big hills.  Two Year Old Riding Strider

He was even able to keep up with the older neighbor boys who were riding their pedal bikes. That’s when we knew he was ready for a “big-boy-bike”.

After getting the Performance Bike in the mail, we realized that it is MUCH heavier than his 6lb balance bike – and it would take some getting used to.  We removed the training wheels, the back fender (because Andrew scratched his leg on it), and then removed the back reflector so we could get the seat down as low as we could get it, so it was closer resembling the Strider.


Here’s the {BIG TIP} in transitioning from balance bike to a pedal bike:

Then we unscrewed the pedals (With him watching!)  The whole pedal area didn’t come off, but the actual pedals did, which was enough for him to be able to push himself around. We told him that when he was used to the weight of the bike and balancing well with it, we would put the pedals back on.  DSC04760.jpg

It was crazy, after just a few short minutes of him running this bike with the neighbor boys, he came and asked for us to put the pedals back on the bike. DSC04765.jpg

***SCARYYYYY!!!!**** (for Mom and Dad, that is….)

He took off!!

And just like that, he was riding his pedal bike, without training wheels, without help, and without a care in the world.


Even after several weeks of him riding, I’m totally amazed that I have a 3 1/2 year old riding his bike without training wheels – and I tell just about everyone about our awesome experience with the balance bike “process”. Four Year Old Biking No Training Wheels

My husband has also really taken a liking to the Performance Bicycles.  He feels that they are so strongly built that almost nothing could destroy them!

Yes, Even my husband has been riding the small 12” bicycle with all of his 210lbs.. DSC04776.jpg

He would *never* try that with a bike from Target! All of our bikes from now on will come from Performance.

Performance Bike has a ‘Grow Up with Performance’ program, where you can receive discounts on all subsequent purchases of bikes and accessories as your child grows out of each bike category.


For more information on Performance Bikes, check them out in store at several locations, or online at, or on Facebook and Twitter!

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This is their last weekend of the Summer Clearance for up to 50% off of bikes and accessories! Check them out Today!


  1. Wow! I guess I need to change my strategy or lack of lol I blame my parents I self taught myself at 12 yrs old to ride a bike (so embarrassing to admit)

  2. That is SO awesome! My 6 1/2 year old still can’t ride her bike without training wheels… :\ Working on balancing first might be the right way to go with her. She gets so nervous!

    • Yeah -it’d be great to see if you can take the pedals off of her bike – but It’s not too late to get her a balance bike, either! They come in larger sizes as well on the strider site 😀 They’re pretty awesome, really!

  3. genius! I learned how to ride a bike but can never remember how my mom taught me. A close friend of mine never learned how, and she’d always say how she seems to have lost half of her childhood. hahaha…

  4. I did it the old=fashioned way…there is nothing easier than falling off a bicycle, or scarier than that hard sidewalk when you’re still short.

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  7. Cynthia says:

    Did your son have experience using pedals on something else (e.g. tricycle)? My daughter doesn’t seem to understand that she needs to move her legs around, not just up and down.

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