Looking for an indoor balance bike for your playroom or patio? If so, the QPlay Tech balance bike is a good fit. It’s a fun “toy” that will help your toddler burn some energy and develop gross motor skills.
Because it has plastic wheels, however, we don’t recommend this balance bike for serious outdoor riding.
Review in a Nutshell
- Recessed bolts protect children from injury
- Low minimum seatpost height accommodates young toddlers
- Built-in steering limiter
- Adjustable height seatpost and handlebars
- Grips have bumpers to keep little hands from slipping off
- Plastic wheels lack traction and aren’t suitable for outdoor play
- No quick-release seatpost
- Oddly shaped saddle causes kids to slide forward
Price: $79.99 (Last updated: 2022-05-08 at 01:05 – More Info)
QPlay Balance Bike Detailed Review
Good Fit for Young Toddlers
For toddlers between 18 months and 3 years, the QPlay balance bike provides a good fit thanks to its low seatpost height (11 inches) and short reach.
In order for your child to fit comfortably and safely on the bike, you should measure their inseam before ordering. Your kiddos inseam needs to be AT LEAST 11 inches for them to be able to put their feet flat on the ground.
The bike is also relatively lightweight (8.4 lbs) which makes it easy to handle for young toddlers. While this isn’t THE lightest bike on the market, it is certainly lighter than many heavier balance bikes better suited to preschoolers and older riders.
While the bike is advertised for kids as old as 4, it is best suited for kids between 2 and 3 years old due to the limited height saddle and handlebar. Our 3-year-old tester was already nearing the max size for the bike.
Safety Features Include a Steering Limiter, Recessed Bolts, and Grip Ends
With the exception of the plastic wheels (which I’ll mention in more depth in a moment), the QPlay balance bike offers plenty of safety features.
We appreciate the recessed bolts that won’t scratch or otherwise injure kids. This is a step up from most under-$100 balance bikes that generally have quite pronounced bolts.
The bike also has a built-in steering limiter that keeps kids who are just learning to ride from over-rotating the bars and crashing.
Finally, the handlebar grips have nice large ends to keep little hands from slipping off the sides.
Plastic Wheels Lack Traction
The plastic wheels are where the QPlay balance bike falls short. They have virtually no traction, and my son managed to slide out even on our hardwood floors. Aside from very mild indoor or patio play, I can’t recommend this bike as a result.
The QPlay wheels (left) have plastic tires with zero grip or traction. Compare them to the pneumatic (air) tires of the Kiddimoto balance bike (center) or the foam tires of the Eastern Pusher balance bike (far right).
While our favorite balance bikes have pneumatic (air) tires, even bikes like the Strider Classic balance bike with its foam tires are far superior. These bikes can be ridden on uneven sidewalks, on gravel, or dirt. The QPlay can not–at least not safely.
If you are just looking for a balance bike to use as an indoor “toy” the QPlay is a good pick; otherwise, look for a bike with real tires.
Adjustable Height Handlebars and Seat
Because toddlers grow so fast, we always look for a bike that has both adjustable height handlebars and seat. The QPlay has both.
The handlebars and seatpost are relatively easy to adjust, though they lack a tool-free, quick-release adjustment. Instead, you need to use a hex wrench to raise or lower the seat and bars. (The hex wrench is included, so make sure to keep it someplace handy).
Oddly Shaped Saddle Causes Kids to Slide Forward
The saddle (aka bike seat) has an odd shape and is tilted downward, causing kids to slide forward on the seat. While this was fine for our 20 month old tester with his short torso, it created an issue for our larger 3-year-old tester who was s bit cramped on the bike due to the forward position.
Comparison Chart: QPlay Versus Other 10″ Balance Bikes
|Bike||Wheel Size||MSRP||Suggested Age||Seat Height||Frame Material||Tire Type||Bike weight||Brake?||Multiple colors|
|Q Play Tech*||10"||[amazon-element asin="B07JH5HTKT" fields="ListPrice"]||18 months - 3 years||11"-14"||Plastic||Plastic||8.4 lbs||No||Yes|
|Frog Tadpole Mini*||10"||$200 USD||18 months - 2 years||9.5" - 15"||Aluminum||Air||7.6 lbs||Yes||Yes|
|Yvloution Y Velo Junio*||10"||[amazon-element asin="B00P83UNSI" fields="ListPrice"]||18 months - 3 years||10.5"-15"||Aluminum||Rubber||7.7 lbs||No||Yes|
|Haro Prewheelz 10||10"||[amazon-element asin="B01N1GWVZB" fields="ListPrice"]||18 months - 3 years||11”-17”||Steel||Foam||9 lbs||No||Yes|
Bottom-Line: A Fun Indoor Toy But Not Designed for Outdoor Use
If you are searching for a balance bike for use in your playroom, the QPlay is a good option. It’s affordable, fun for young toddlers, and will help them develop gross motor skills.
For outdoor play, on the other hand, we do NOT recommend the QPlay balance bike due to the small plastic wheels that lack grip and traction. Opt instead for a balance bike that’s a real bicycle, not a toy.