Itching to get your young toddler on a balance bike? Many balance bikes are too big and too heavy for the very youngest riders to handle. That’s why we like the Yvolution Y Velo Junior balance bike.
Its unique design includes a (removable) double rear wheel to aid toddlers as young as 18 months in learning to balance and ride a bike. It also has a low minimum seat height, reasonable low weight, and safety features that we like for teeny tiny riders.
We also like the bike for indoor riding for toddlers of all ages thanks to non-marking rubber wheels. On the other hand, it is not the ideal bike for outdoor or more agressive riding. It is better used as a learning tool and a toy rather than as a real bike.
Review in a Nutshell
- Unique double rear wheel design is ideal for young toddlers
- Rubber wheels don’t mark up indoor floors
- Easily adjustable handlebar and seatpost
- Recessed bolts and smooth surfaces mean there’s nothing to get injured on
- Small and light enough for tiny riders
- Under $100
- Tires aren’t ideal for outdoor riding
- Better as a “toy” than as a “bike”
Price: $71.27 (Last updated: 2020-08-12 at 13:27 – More Info)
Yvolution Y Velo Junior Detailed Review
Sized for Toddlers as Young as 18 Months Old
Who is the Yvolution Y Velo Junior perfect for? Parents of very young riders.
The minimum seat-height (10.5 inches) is low enough for toddlers as young as 18 months to ride. Our 20-month-old tester was able to comfortably sit on the saddle and reach the ground.
The saddle is also reasonably flat with little padding. While this might not be great for older kids, for young toddlers still in diapers, this saddle design allows them to easily get on and off the bike without snagging.
It’s also super light at under 8 pounds, which makes it easier for small toddlers to handle. The heavier a bike, the frustrated tiny riders will become when learning.
Innovative Double Rear Wheel Design Makes Balancing Easy
Our favorite thing about this bike is a double rear wheel. While there are several convertible trike-to-balance bike designs out there (such as the Wishbone 3-in-1), this is the only bike we know of that uses two double wheels placed directly next to each other.
Rear double wheels can be converted to a single wheel once your child is ready.
This design is awesome as it teaches kids to balance (which they don’t get on a trike), but still provides plenty of stability. In fact, the bike will roll and balance on its own for a few moments before toppling over.
Once your child has mastered the double wheels, you can remove one of the wheels to make it a more traditional style balance bike.
Perfect For Indoor and Gym Play
This balance bike is ideal for indoor play. We allowed it to be used for several weeks inside our house and didn’t notice any marking on our hardwood floors.
We loved the Y Velo Yvolution balance bike for indoor play time on a rainy day.
The wheels are made of a rubber-like material over plastic. They roll smoothly on packed surfaces and provide a decent amount of traction, especially when compared with other balance bikes with plastic-like wheels.
That said, we wouldn’t recommend the bike for any serious outdoor riding. (On a very smooth driveway or deck it will be okay). For riding on uneven sidewalks, on grass, gravel or dirt, we would highly recommend choosing a bike with pneumatic (air) tires instead.
Compare the tires on the Y Velo Junior (left) with the pneumatic (air) tires on the Yeddoo Too Too (right). The air tires are much better suited to “real” riding on pavement, gravel, grass, or dirt.
Better Construction than Most Bikes at This Price Point
A lot of balance bikes under $100 are cheaply made, lack durability, and are actually downright dangerous.
The Y Velo Junior is not one of them. I can easily recommend this bike and sleep well at night. The construction is solid, the bearings in the wheels spin smoothly, and the bike won’t end up in a landfill a month from now.
Recessed Bolts and Built-In Steering Limiter Offer Extra Safety
Many budget balance bikes (and even some more expensive balance bikes) will have bolts that stick out and cause a hazard in the event of a crash. The Y Velo Junior has smooth, recessed bolts that kids can’t get hurt on.
The wheels on the Y Velo Junior (left) have recessed bolts. Compare this to the bolts on the Enkeeo balance bike (right). We far prefer the clean and safer design of the Y Velo.
Additionally, the bike has a built-in steering limiter. This keeps young kids who are just learning to ride from over-rotating their bars and crashing.
Easily Adjustable Seat and Handlebars
The seat height is easily adjustable without any tools thanks to a screw knob that allows you to lock the seat into different holes in the seatpost. We appreciate this since it seems like kids often grow overnight and it’s a pain to constantly pull out a tool to adjust the seatpost.
The seat adjusts via a yellow screw knob and the handlebars adjust with an included hex-wrench
The handlebars do require a tool (an included hex wrench) to be raised or lowered, but that’s easy enough to do. In fact, we find that many balance bikes in the under $100 range tend to have handlebars that come loose easily, so it’s nice to see one that tightens solidly in place.
Not Intended for Aggressive Riding or For Older Kids
While we really love the Y Velo Junior for young toddlers, it has a limited useful lifespan. Once toddlers get more adventurous and aggressive, the Y Velo no longer delivers. As mentioned earlier, it lacks pneumatic air tires and tires with tread that would allow it be ridden on more challenging terrain like uneven sidewalks or dirt.
It also has 10″ wheels as opposed to 12″ wheels that most balance bikes have. While this lends to the small size and ideal design for very young toddlers, it becomes a hindrance once kids are 2 or 3. Smaller wheels roll slower and have a harder time making it up and over obstacles.
Finally, the bike lacks a handbrake that we like to see on a bike for older toddlers and preschoolers. A brake is unnecessary for a young toddler but becomes helpful by the time a kiddo is around 2.5 years old.
If you want a bike that grow with your toddler as they become more athletic, or you already know that you want your child to be able to go on outdoor adventures, invest in a REAL bike like the Woom 1 or Yedoo Too Too. These bikes have air tires, brakes, and other components that make them better suited to serious bicycle riding.
Comparison Chart: SMALL Balance Bikes
Here’s how the Yvolution Y Velo compares to other balance bikes intended for toddlers starting at 18 months old.
|Bike||Wheel Size||Suggested Age||Seat Height||Frame Material||Tire Type||Bike weight||Brake?||Multiple colors|
|Frog Tadpole Mini||10"||18 months - 2 years||9.5" - 15"||Aluminum||Air||7.6 lbs||Yes||Yes|
|Yedoo Too Too||12"||18 months - 4 years||12"-18"||Steel||Air||8.4 lbs||Yes||Yes|
|Woom 1||12"||18 months - 3 years||10.8"-15.7"||Aluminum|
|Strider Classic Balance Bike||12||18 months - 3 years||11"-16"||Steel||Foam|| |
|Yvloution Y Velo Junio||10"||18 months - 3 years||10.5"-15"||Aluminum||Rubber||7.7 lbs||No||Yes|
|Haro Prewheelz 10||10"||18 months - 3 years||11”-17”||Steel||Foam||9 lbs||No||Yes|
Bottom-Line: A Fun Bike for Young Toddlers
The Yvolution Y Velo Junior balance bike provides a fun and easy introduction to bicycles for very young toddlers. It’s low minimum seatpost height, light weight, and innovative double rear wheel makes it superior to most balance bikes for learning to ride.
That said, it is better suited to indoor and gym riding than outdoor biking. Once kids become more athletic and aggressive, they are better off with a REAL bike. Even then, however, the Y Velo remains a fun toy to play with inside the playroom.
Do More Research Before You Buy
Want to make sure you buy the very best balance bike for your child? Here are some resources to help you make an informed purchase and make sure your child has fun on their bike.