Ride on any terrain with the best kids mountain bikes

·9-min read



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Looking to get your kids outside this summer? Then you need to get a hold of the leading kids mountain bikes of 2022 for all types of terrain. It’s safe to say that, as a parent, you don’t like watching your child spend the whole day on their iPad. If you’re looking for an outdoor activity to keep your little one healthy and entertained, we suggest getting them a kids mountain bike.

Kids mountain bikes are built to withstand any terrain thanks to their light build, incredible extension, and versatility. Whether it’s muddy or rocky, these bikes can help your children have a blast while riding.

Although having a mountain bike can be an excellent way to introduce your children to the great outdoors, it can often be challenging to choose the right one. To help you out, we’ve listed the top kids mountain bikes of 2022 below for some outdoor family fun.

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Guardian Bikes Kids Mountain Bike: Great pick

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To start our list off is the Guardian Bikes Kids Mountain Bike, boasting a lightweight, easy-to-maneuver build to help your child avoid any obstacles and accidents. Its design also features a one-brake lever system for both wheels, providing a much faster breaking time when your kids are out on an adventure. The black-and-red color scheme looks cool and sporty, and it comes with all the necessary tools to quickly assemble it and start riding. It’s a great choice for children between the ages of five and eight, and the manufacturer even offers a 30-day trial and limited lifetime warranty so that you don’t have to worry about your money going down the drain. Thanks to its cool, user-friendly design, this kids mountain bike is our top pick.

Pros

Cons

  • No water bottle holder

Mongoose Kids Mountain Bike: Unique

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Take your child’s cycling up a notch with the Mongoose Kids Mountain Bike, offering 21 different speed adjustments that make it a lot easier to control than other options. Its strong, lightweight steel frame helps make sure your child is in control while behind the handlebars, and it comes equipped with alloy wheels for maintaining traction and enjoying a smooth ride. The design of this one contains forward and rear brakes that help the rider quickly stop the bike whenever necessary. The brakes can be adjusted during assembly according to how stiff you want them, as can the seat and shoe position. It's even available in bright pink, making it a great choice for anyone who wants to stand out while riding the trails.

Pros

  • Features 21 adjustable speeds

  • Lightweight, strong design

  • Durable alloy wheels

Cons

  • Some reported it arrived broken

Huffy Kids Mountain Bike: Easy-to-use

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If you’re looking for a bike that can easily be assembled and deal with any terrain, the Huffy Kids Mountain Bike has got you covered thanks to its “Quick Connect” design. This feature doesn’t require any tools for assembly, and all you need to do is follow the company’s guide to get it up and running in minutes. Built to last, it's made of a high-tensile steel frame that can stand up to rough, offroad riding. The front suspension and rear spring shock help your child enjoy a comfortable, smooth ride, and the trailing edge tires provide incredible traction in all kinds of conditions. If you’re looking for a kids mountain bike that you can count on and, as a bonus, is easy to assemble, consider this one while shopping around.

Pros

  • Easy to assemble

  • Durable, long-lasting design

  • Good grip in wet (and dry) conditions

Cons

  • Cannot add training wheels to it

Dynacraft Kids Mountain Bike: Another option

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The Dynacraft Kids Mountain Bike prides itself on providing extra support, hosting a dual suspension that absorbs any impact while riding. Its features 18 different speeds for your child to customize their ride, allowing them to pedal up or down hills and slopes with ease. The front and rear V-brakes of this kids mountain bike allow for quick stops, ensuring that your child has complete control while riding. It has an adjustable seat, making it suitable for various ages and also ensuring that your child won’t outgrow it within a year. It will arrive on your doorstep partially assembled, and the rest is extremely easy to put together, which can be a fun way to bond with your child.

Pros

  • Multiple speeds to choose from

  • Dual suspension provides a comfortable ride

  • Arrives partially assembled

Cons

  • It’s not foldable

Diamondback Bicycles Kids Mountain Bike: User friendly

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Not sure if your child is prepared for the full mountain biking experience? Consider opting for the Diamondback Bicycles Kids Mountain Bike, which features user-friendly brakes and gears to give your little one all the control they need. It has six speed options that are trigger shiftable, making them much more intuitive and fun, and they allow your child to easily traverse slopes or hills while riding. The brake system has adjustable levers that can be calibrated so your child can reach them with ease. With a rear derailleur guard and large, sturdy tires, this bike doesn’t mind being used roughly on adventures, no matter where they happen to be.

Pros

  • Adjustable brake system

  • Multiple speeds for various riding occasions

  • Sturdy, easy-to-use design

Cons

  • Only comes in only one color

Buyer’s guide for finding a kids mountain bike

While a mountain bike is an excellent way for your kids to connect with nature, the varieties in shape, size and function can make it challenging to select the ideal one. That’s why, to help you with your search, we’ve listed everything you need to know about kids mountain bikes in 2022:

Things to consider

Here are some things you need to consider before purchasing a kids mountain bike for your little rider:

Material

Whenever you’re shopping for a kids mountain bike, the material of the frame is the most crucial factor you should take into account. Pick out a bike with a lightweight steel or aluminum design that adds to its durability while also keeping it stable. You should also make sure that the bike's weight is less than half your child’s weight, as this will allow them to easily maneuver their kids mountain bike however they like.

Bike height

When considering the height of a kids mountain bike, there are two main things you should think about — seat height and stand-over height. When looking at seat height, make sure that it’s adjustable and allows your child to have both feet firmly planted on the ground when they’re seated — this helps prevent your kid from falling off the bike and changing their direction while standing. An adjustable seat also allows you to increase the bike’s height if your child outgrows it in a year, offering a futureproof option that can help you save money in the long run.

For stand-over height, you need to make sure that your child can straddle the bike with both feet flat on the ground. Your child should easily be able to stand when the kids mountain bike is stationary so they don’t end up falling over every time they stop the bike. You can also refer to extensive bike height guides to make sure that you don’t purchase the wrong-sized mountain bike for your little one.

Brakes

There are two variations of brakes on kids mountain bikes — coaster/pedal brakes and squeezable brakes. We recommend getting a bike with squeezable brakes, as these are much more intuitive for children to learn and use, especially for younger ages.

Coaster brakes, while admittedly more effective, are counterintuitive, and a child might not be able to generate the force required to stop their bike at high speeds. If your little one is 12 years or older, though, they’ll probably be able to make do with pedal brakes.

Suspension

Choosing the suspension will depend on how your kid intends to use their mountain bike. If they mainly ride on flat trails, getting a bike with only a front suspension will be a cheaper and more suitable option. If your child intends to tackle rocky trails and bumpy tracks, though, we recommend purchasing a full suspension to make the ride more enjoyable — as well as less painful — for your little one.

Gears

Gears aren’t really necessary when it comes to kids mountain bikes, but they do help your child traverse slopes and hilly areas. When considering gears, there are two questions you need to ask yourself — how many gears do you want, and which gear type should you go for? Let's help you answer them!

How many gears?

The number of gears can reach up to 27 on a professional model, but you won’t need to go overboard on a kids mountain bike. We recommend getting a bike with seven to nine gears, as this will give your child an option for cycling up hills and racing on sidewalks while also preparing them for a more advanced mountain bike later in life.

Types of gears — grip shifters and trigger shifters

There are generally two types of gears present in a kids mountain bike — grip shifters and trigger shifters. Grip shifters provide more options but can be challenging for children with smaller hands to use, as they likely won’t be able to reach and grip the shifter on the handle.

A trigger shifter can be much more convenient for children to operate, no matter their age or hand size. This is because of the more familiar design of the trigger, which is also used in plastic toys and brake levers. For a more comprehensive description of both types of shifters, you can take a look at this guide.

Kids Mountain Bikes FAQ's

Q: Does having more gears in your mountain bike help on rocky trails?

Having more options is not always better, especially for someone who is just learning how to ride. A lower gear is generally used for biking uphill so the rider doesn't have to put as much effort in while pedaling, but take your child’s experience into account when considering the number of gears included in the kids mountain bike you’re looking at.

Q: How does the weight of the bike affect my child’s experience?

The weight of a kids mountain bike will greatly affect new learners, as it’s often difficult for younger children to handle and control the bike if it weighs too much. The bike should weigh approximately half your child’s weight for smooth, easy riding.

Q: Is it better to get a bigger bike for my kid so they can keep using it as they grow?

Having a bike that’s larger than your child’s size can be beneficial in the future, but they may suffer more injuries now, as they likely won’t be able to control it as well and may frequently topple over. It’s better to look for a kids mountain bike with an adjustable seat to ensure that your child isn’t at risk of any unnecessary injuries while riding.

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