Bike size guide:

  • 105-117cm, 4-6 yrs: 14"
  • 112-125cm, 5-7 yrs: 16"

My niece already has a 14" bike her daddy got her. I have been monitoring her height, she's definitely growing. At the moment she's 114cm tall. Is there a good reason why I shouldn't get her a 16" instead?

  • Yes you can go up
    – paparazzo
    Sep 23 '17 at 13:55

In an ideal world, you'd keep the sizing matching the growth of the tyke. However, they grow fast enough that most people can't afford the money or space to keep a acquire bikes of correct size at all times.

The usual compromise (in the US at least, especially in families which aren't made up of cyclists) is to buy a bike which is bigger than necessary for the kid, and let them ride it until its too small for them. This is easier to deal with for children cause they don't start out with all sorts of body pain and they don't ride long enough distances for form and stuff to matter. Young kids are also a case where riding a is okay, in my opinion; they're not with the bikes long enough for quality to matter in most cases, and its not like they're going to learn upkeep until they're early teenagers anyway.

It'd be fine for her to ride the 16" bike, but there is the question of how long the 16" bike will be a good fit for her. It might be better to wait for her to hit around 120 cm and then skip the 16" bike or something (this is what I did).

  • 1
    I just returned to argos (catalogue store where you buy all sorts). They didn't tighten the cups on the hub so it had some side to side movement. Plus it had a few stiff links in the chain. Heap of shit!
    – Ageis
    Sep 23 '17 at 14:49
  • 2
    It doesn't hurt to adjust things after you get it. But, over the course of riding for most kids, the mileage they put on it won't cause significant problems unless something is significantly wrong. Even buying a used BSO at a yard sale that's been passed through 10 kids is probably still fine.
    – Batman
    Sep 23 '17 at 14:55
  • Just make sure you at least set the saddle height correctly. Adjusting the stem size (if possible) is also a good idea. Interestingly I’ve only ever seen children with very low saddles and/or on too big frames, never on too small frames.
    – Michael
    Sep 23 '17 at 16:53

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