Bike for teen with balance issues



Grimey

New Member
Jun 6, 2014
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Hello. First post here. I have been reading this forum a lot and am impressed with everyone's knowledge so I am hoping you can help me out. I love to bike casually, and have a soon-to-be 15 year old son who is definitely nervous when his feet cannot touch the ground on a bike. Because of that, when he does ride(rarely), he rides his old kids bike which he is much too big for. He is 5'5" and 118 pounds. I told him he needs to select a summer exercise and he picked bike riding so I want to get him a new bike that fits him. We went to our LBS yesterday and the bikes with the taller wheels are definitely out. Slight panic attack on the tall wheeled bikes.... We need the 26". So far he is ok with the Raleigh Venture 4.0 and the Cannondale Adventure 3, preferring the Cannondale because his feet rested more comfortably on the floor. I think the seat may have been lower so we will go back and retry both before we decide. They were both their small frames. Tomorrow we will go to another LBS to try the Trek Pure and whatever else they suggest. Questions: Any thoughts between these three bikes? Recommendations between the models of these brands I.e. the Adventure 3 vs the 2, etc.? Which one will be best for him if he grows a lot? Is there another bike we should look at? We are in south florida so hills are not an issue. I really want to stay with these "comfort" models specifically because I want him to get comfortable on an adult bike to get him through his college years and beyond. I so fondly recall the years I spent on my bike on campus and I want that for him too! Thank you in advance for your time and advice.
 

Ocelote

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Jun 6, 2014
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Has he tried an Electra Townie? Those bikes are designed to be able to put the feet on the ground. Very similar to the Trek Pure

I am not a very agile rider and I just recently returned to cycling, after about 10 years of not riding at all. I tried the Electra and felt great, unfortunately I am only 5' and it was too big for me.

I tried several other bikes. The ones that I tried have a "relaxed" geometry (like what you have been looking at). I tried the Specialized Expedition and it didn't feel great. And I tried the Trek Shift and I found it incredibly stable. I have never felt so secure in a bike. However, I can't reach the ground with it. I suggest he tries it anyway, just to be sure. I just bought it and love it.
 

oldbobcat

Well-Known Member
Aug 31, 2003
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Originally Posted by Ocelote
Has he tried an Electra Townie? Those bikes are designed to be able to put the feet on the ground. Very similar to the Trek Pure
Excellent recommendation.

Last fall I set up a customer on one of these. He's an elderly guy who had balance issues after a stroke. He was looking for a trike, but after talking to him I learned he could balance, but he just needed to be able to get his landing gear solidly on the ground in a hurry. One test ride on a Townie with a step-through frame and he forgot all about the trike.
 

Grimey

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Jun 6, 2014
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Thank you for the replies. We tried the Sun Drifter, the Townie, and the Trek Pure. The first two were OK. He really liked the Pure. We also tried the Trek Shift (thank you for the suggestion) and test rode the Cannondale Adventure. He said those were ok too. After all 5 test rides he definitely wants the Pure so tomorrow we will go give it a second test ride then purchase it if he still likes it. Thanx again.
 

oldbobcat

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Aug 31, 2003
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Nice job researching your problem, and congratulations on finding a good solution.
 

Grimey

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Jun 6, 2014
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Just a little update. I got my son the Trek Pure. We love, love, love it! The sad news is that my cheap old bike was SO BAD in comparison I ended up buying myself a new bike too! I got the Electra Townie. Almost the same bikes. :love: We have been riding every day and I couldn't be happier.
 

oldbobcat

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Aug 31, 2003
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Originally Posted by Grimey


The sad news is that my cheap old bike was SO BAD in comparison I ended up buying myself a new bike too! I got the Electra Townie. Almost the same bikes.
love.png
Isn't that the way it goes? The Pure and Townie sound perfectly matched for your needs. Happy trails.