The Scooter Wars

OK, let me start by saying (not apologizing, just saying) that this is not the most intellectual of posts. I have this 5 year old who desperately needs a new bike. She's outgrown her old one, and my 4 year old is jonesing for it. Her birthday's coming up, and we thought it would be a good time to get her a bike. (great parenting skills we have, I know) Except now, she's decided she wants a scooter instead, because she thinks it would be easier than a bike. She has never ridden a scooter in her life - she has no real idea as to how hard or easy it would be. So do I get her a scooter and let her figure out that it's harder than it looks? (Maybe they're easier than they look, I don't know. Scooters were not around when I was 5.) Do I get her a bike and make her learn to ride it well, thus to teach her that effort pays off? Or do I simply get her both and raise a materialistic monster? Ok, I've ruled out that last one. But I do not want to foster the idea that easier is better, she often chooses the easy way already, and it kills me. I haven't really priced scooters vs. bikes, so the whole decision might be taken out of my hands and decided by the financial gods anyway. ARE scooters easier than bikes? She brings up the scooter idea daily, saying she needs it before her birthday (which is SO not going to happen - whining does not work for me). I don't know which side I am on in the scooter vs. bike wars. O wise Mommies in Mormondom, is there a right answer here?


Blogger Kristine said...

My youngest son could ride a scooter pretty well at 20 months. Then again, he taught himself to ride a 2-wheeler just before his 4th birthday, so maybe he's freakishly precocious in the wheeled vehicles area of development. Still, I do think scooters might be easier, and they don't fall as far if they crash.

3/07/2005 05:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A scooter is an excellent way to learn to ride a 2-wheeler. A child learns balance on the scooter, without having to worry about all the other things involved in bike riding. Once he/she has the balance thing down it's an easy transition to a real bike [w/o training wheelers.]

We went this route quite successfully with one of our kids who couldn't get the hang of a bike.


3/07/2005 05:20:00 PM  
Blogger fMhLisa said...

Heather!!! You have a blog. I love it.

3/07/2005 05:34:00 PM  
Blogger Heather O. said...


So glad you found us! We hope to see you here more often. And don't worry, we'll give lots of plugs for FMH.

3/07/2005 06:54:00 PM  
Anonymous Chad Too said...

My son hit me with the scooter thing when he was 5, but the box said for ages 8 and up. I showed him that, and he didn't ask for one again until his eighth birthday. He got the scooter and pads then.

Gotta love the fine print!

3/07/2005 08:01:00 PM  
Anonymous JKS said...

My kids are 7, 5 and 1. We got our first scooters when they were 6 and 4. (They are very tall kids btw, the size of kids 2 years older). Anyway, the 6 year old picked up the scooter in about 2 seconds (2 wheeler). The 4 year old got a skateboard with a handle type of scooter. I thought, hey, 4 wheels, easier to not fall. It doesn't turn though.
Anyway, when he turned 5 we got him a 2 wheel scooter. They both LOVE them still. It has the benefit of being easier to pack along to Grandmas. Also, easier to ride in smaller spaces (like our driveway & backyard). The bikes need a little more room.
Anyway, yes, get him a 2 wheel scooter. He'll love it. Have him share the old bike or something when he's riding the scooter. Except maybe training wheels are the issue? Maybe get the bigger bike for Christmas.

3/08/2005 12:01:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, our scooters said age 5+.

3/08/2005 12:02:00 AM  
Blogger Sarah said...

I was riding a scooter maybe 35 minutes after I got it for my 8th birthday (and I'm not great at that sort of thing -- my pogo ball and pogo stick are still shiny and new, 15 years later.) I got a bike for my mom's house when I was 6, and a bike at my dad's house when I was 7, and it wasn't until I was nearly 10 that I was comfortable with it (then one day I was riding in figure 8's with my eyes closed AND my hands off the handlebars.)

Alas, my scooter was stolen after I was scared off it by a Doberman pincher, so I never learned any fun tricks for it.

3/08/2005 03:01:00 AM  
Anonymous JKS said...

So, what did you decide?

3/13/2005 02:23:00 AM  
Blogger The Wiz said...

I think I have decided to get her the scooter. The general consensus seems to be pro-scooter, and she has not let it go, she really wants it "with all her heart."

3/14/2005 01:03:00 AM  

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