A proper fitting bicycle can make a huge difference in the success of a novice mountain bikers ability to learn the skills necessary to grow in the sport.
Age Range : Wheel Size
2 – 4 yrs old : 12″
3 – 5 yrs old : 14″
4 – 6 yrs old : 16″
5 – 8 yrs old : 20″
8 – 12 yrs old : 24″
12+ yrs old : 26″/27.5″
Weight is an important consideration when choosing a kids bike. Lighter bikes are easier to maneuver and will help kids be more successful as they develop climbing skills.
For development team riders new to mountain biking, front and rear suspension is not necessary. Many kids bike are built with inadequate suspension. As kids develop and ride more technical trails, having a bike with suspension becomes more important.
One of the singe most important components to the bicycle. Kids bikes come with one of three different types of brake systems – coaster brakes, rim brakes, or disk brakes.
Coaster brakes are a braking system that utilized a hub that engages when pedaling forward, allows the pedals to not turn when not pedaling, and brakes the rear wheel when pedaling in reverse. We do not allow bikes with coaster brakes in CSAT’s programs. They present a huge safety concern because brake failure from a chain break or derailment can be catastrophic.
Rim brakes, and disk brakes are both acceptable in our youth MTB programs. Rim brakes stop the bike by squeezing the rim of the wheel. Disk brakes, which utilize a caliper squeezing a disc near the hub offers superior stopping power especially in the mucky conditions we find here at Post Canyon.
Brake levers often need to be adjusted for kids to improve their grip. The lever often be adjust easily bring the lever towards the bars by turning a screw. This allows for small hands to maintain control of the bike while operating brakes. This is especially important when descending.
PRE-RIDE SAFETY CHECK
Frequent safety checks are extremely important and are one of the first skills we teach our rider. At the beginning of the season, don’t be afraid to take that bike into one of our amazing Hood River bike shops to have it looked over.
Before every ride it’s important to check air pressure in the tires, the brake system, and the drivetrain to make sure the chain is shifting properly through the system. Lastly, we always check out the quick release skewer that secures the wheels to the bicycle.
The most important thing to consider in a kids helmet is that it fits and is comfortable. Many helmets offer a ratcheting fit system to make a perfect fit and adjust with growth.
Full Face Helmets are required for our Enduro Team Riders. Look for a light weight helmet that fits well. Several models feature a removable chin guard that allow a little more versatility. Stay away from heavy motocross helmets.
Protect those fingers from dirt, rocks, branches, and the elements. There are many brands that offer comfortable kids gloves that fit will.
Comfortable knee and/or elbow pads offer protection from falls.
Post Canyon often gets slick with pebbles on packed soil. Closed-toed, flat soled shoes with adequate traction for trails should be worn. If you are looking for mountain bike specific shoes for kids, check out the Five Ten Freerider shoe.
A small kids specific pack is needed for Post Canyon adventures. Should be large enough to hold water, snacks, an extra layer, tools, spare tube, pads, and more snacks.