Looking for a 24 inch bike for your child? Whether you are familiar with Woom bikes and looking to upgrade to the next size, or brand new to the world of high-quality kids bikes, the Woom 5 is THE 24 inch bike we’d recommend for the vast majority of families.
This is the ideal bike for riding to school, biking the gravel rail trail on the weekends, and cruising to the swimming pool with friends. It is lightweight, has confidence-inspiring geometry, and results in lots of smiles (as we learned during testing).
The bike is built up with high-quality components that means the bike will continue rolling smoothly for years of use (and you can still hand it down to the next kid or sell it and recoup a good portion of your investment. The Woom 5 is NOT cheap, but it’s worth every penny and we’ll explain why in this review.
Review In A Nutshell
- High quality components
- Child appropriate geometry
- All terrain tires
- Eyelets for a rack
- Grip shift can be tough to operate
- No quick release skewer on rear wheel
- No disc brakes
Lightweight Design Let’s Kids Go Farther, Faster
The number one reason we recommend Woom bikes are because they are lightweight (but still durable). While weight is most critical for very young pedalers, it still matters for kids on 24 inch bikes too.
The Woom 5 tips the scales at a very respectable 20.3 pounds, and is a whopping 5+ pounds lighter than the Specailized Hotrock 24 or Trek Precaliber 24. What this means is that kids will be able to pedal farther, faster, and feel more comfortable doing so.
Child Appropriate Geometry Inspires Confidence
Woom spends a lot of time on the design of their bikes to consider what makes a great bike for kids. The bike has a long wheelbase, low center of gravity, low standover, and forgiving steering geometry.
All of these things make for a bike that inspires confidence in kids and makes riding the bike fun. Both my very agressive 8 year old, and our more timid 7-year-old friend had nothing but positive things to say about the riding experience. The bike is fast, nimble, and easy to handle.
High-End Drivetrain….But We’re Not Crazy About The Shifter
The Woom 5 has a high-quality SRAM X4 8-speed drivetrain. There is a good range of gears and kids should be comfortable on this bike for both climbing and riding fast on flat roads.
The bike has a 28 tooth chainring and a casette ranging from 11 to 32 teeth. If you’re into the nerdy details, this equates to a gear ratio between 0.9 and 2.5 and a gain ratio between 2 and 6.
Not sure what any of that means? Just know that your kiddo will be able to make it up that hill and down the other side without being under or over geared.
The cranks are appropriately sized (130 mm) and have a narrow q-factor (the distance between pedals). Both of these factors mean that the bike is comfortable to pedal and offers an optimal transfer of power.
The biggest con on the Woom 5 is the grip shifter. It’s not BAD, but we’d much prefer if the bike had a trigger shifter. While grip shifters are easier for *some* kids to learn on, by the time kiddos are on a 24 inch bike, they should have the coordination to operate a trigger shifter.
Trigger shifters are both easier to operate and make cleaner shifts. This is the only real complaint we have about the Woom 5.
If you get the bike and your kiddo does just fine with the grip shifter (my son does), then forget and leave it. If your child ends up struggling, you can always swap out for a trigger shifter later.
Brakes Are Easy to Pull And Operate
The Woom 5 has dual hand brakes (no coaster brake) with levers that are easy to reach and easy to pull. The v-brakes are good quality, have Jagwire cable, and do a good job in most riding conditions.
While v-brakes should be just fine for the vast majority of kids, there are some conditions where we’d recommend upgrading to a bike with disc brakes. If you live in a really rainy area, ride a lot of hills, or are planning on doing lots of off-road riding, opt for disc brakes instead.
Still most kids on a 24 inch bike don’t weigh enough or ride hard enough to justify the extra expense and maintenance that disc brakes (especially hydraulic disc brakes) require.
All Terrain Tires Allows Kids To Head Off Road
We often get emails from parents if they should be the Woom 5 for their child or the Woom 5 OFF (mountain bike). The answer really depends on the type of riding your child is doing, but don’t assume that just because your child rides on dirt or gravel every so often that they need the OFF.
For mellow trail riding, dirt roads, and gravel rail trails the Woom 5 off works just fine, thanks largely to the all-terrain tires. This isn’t the bike you want for technical trail riding or jumping at the bike park (if that’s your kiddo pick the OFF instead), but it’s certainly capable of handling a little off-pavement riding.
One Of The Few 24 Inch Bikes That Accepts A Rack
Not everybody needs a rack, but we do get messages from parents looking for a bike that accepts a rack. This may be so that their child can add panniers for biking to school or running errands or so that they can do some bicycle touring as a family.
I always direct these parents to Woom. Since Islabikes stopped distribution in N. America, Woom is now your best option for bikes with racks.
The Woom 5 has eyelets to accept a rack and Woom sells a great rack as an add-on accessory. This is a lot easier than trying to add a seatpost mounted rack or other adaption.
Quick Release On The Seatpost And Front Wheel….But Not The Back Wheel
If you’ve been around for a while, you know that I might sound like a broken record, but I really like quick releases. I’m lazy and there’s really nothing more obnoxious to me than having to get out a hex wrench to adjust seat height or to remove a wheel.
The good news is that the Woom 5 comes with a quick release seatpost collar that makes seat height adjustment quick and painless. Same goes for the quick release skewer on the front wheel that makes taking the wheel off a cinch–helpful in particular if you have a roof-rack that requires the removal of the front wheel.
Unfortunately, there is no quick release skewer on the rear wheel. One (good) reason for this is safety–kids don’t always notice if a quick release is loose and a bolt-on wheel avoids this.
Still, personally I’d rather have the quick release for quick tire changes and remember to check that it’s tight every so often. Fortunately, this is an easy upgrade you can do on your own if you so choose.
Fits Kids Around 7 Years Old
As you know, kids come in all different sizes and have their growth spurts at different times. Some tall kids may be ready for the Woom 5 at 6 years old, while others won’t be until 8. That said, the most typical time to first fit on this bike is around 7 years old.
A better indicator than age is height and inseam length. Your kiddo should be at least 49″ tall and have an inseam of 24″. (The minimum seatpost height is 26.4″ and the standover height is 24″).
Because *most* kids slow down growing around this time, the Woom 5 should last your child much longer than their earlier pedal bikes. (Another reason to invest in a good bike).
Stem Rotates To Grow With Your Child
One of the most unique features of the Woom 5 is the rotating stem. This allows the bike to grow with your child by moving the handlebar further out as their arms and torso grow longer.
Comes With A Kickstand
Many bikes require you to add a kickstand as an accessory, but the Woom 5 comes with one. And it’s not your average kickstand–it’s both more durable and better located.
This heavy-duty kickstand is mounted further back on the chainstays than most kickstands so it doesn’t interfere with your child’s cranks. Super smart, and one of the few kickstands we haven’t automatically removed.
Some kids by this age don’t want a kickstand anymore (and are now less likely to throw their bike directly on the ground). If that’s the case for your kiddo, you can easily remove it and save a little weight.
No Suspension Fork (And That’s A Good Thing)
Some parents will see the lack of a suspension fork, and immediately look elsewhere. Why? Usually because their kid thinks a suspension fork looks “cool.”
Suspension forks ARE amazing–on true, high-end mountain bikes that cost a lot of money. On bikes for crusing around town, a suspension fork adds a lot of weight and doesn’t add much value. Know that other bikes that you see at this pricepoint (or lower) that have a suspension fork is heavy and of sub-par quality.
Even if your child is doing some off-road riding, they can do okay on a rigid fork. Of course, if your kiddo is going off jumps, riding technical trails, etc, a suspension fork is great–but you need to invest in a real mountain bike with a lighter-weight air fork.
Other Things Worth Mentioning
- Pedals. Unlike most pedals that come on kids bikes, we don’t recommend immediately taking these off and throwing them away. These should work well for most kids, but if you do want to upgrade you can check out our list of our favorite pedals.
- Grips. It’s easy to throw any old pair of grips on a bike and call it good. But Woom doesn’t settle for anything mediocre on their bikes. The newest version of the Woom 5 now has a fantastic pair of custom ergonomic grips that are heads and shoulders above most stock grips. We thought these were great.
Is There Anybody We Wouldn’t Recommend The Woom 5 To?
While the Woom 5 is a fantastic bike for the type of riding that most families do (biking to school, biking the greenbelt, etc), there are some families that do more specialized biking and there are better bikes for them. If your family does serious mountain biking, opt for the Woom OFF (or another 24 inch mountain bike). If your kiddo is ready to try a road crit, get them a road bike.
For everybody else, get the Woom 5.
High Resale Value
Now on to the biggest objection I know I’ll get from parents: the price. The Woom 5 is NOT cheap.
But it is very competitively priced for what you get. And at this age kids will get a lot of use out of the bike before they outgrow it. So there’s that.
The other thing to keep in mind is that the Woom bikes have an incredibly high resale value. They’ve gained so much populariy in the last few years, there are even Facebook groups dedicated to Woom buy and sell. You should have no problem recouping a good portion of your investment in a few years when you’re ready to sell.
|Top tube horizontal||20.3″|
|Seat tube angle||72.5°|
|Minimum saddle height||26.4″|
|Maximum saddle height||32.3″|
|Crank length||130 mm|
|Weight limit||175 lbs|
|Frame||AA 6061 aluminum|
|Headset||Fully-integrated 1″ ahead|
|Handlebars||58 cm width|
|Grips||Custom Woom ergogrip|
|Tires||Schwalbe Little Joe 24” x 1.85″ – woom edition|
|Wheels||Custom Woom SOOPA DOOPA HOOPS|
|Brakes||Custom Woom v-brakes, Jagwire cable|
Bottom-Line: THE Perfect 24 Inch Bike For Most Kids
With a few exceptions we’ve already mentioned, the Woom 5 is the bike you want for your kiddo. It will enable them to go further and faster with more fun.
It’s a great bike for biking to school, commuting around town, joining in neighborhood races, you name it. The geometry inspires confidence, the high-quality components keep it rolling smoothly for a LONG time, and the light weight will keep your kid smiling rather than whining on the hills.
This is a bike we HIGHLY recommend.