Dirt biking is more of an aggressive type of riding, making most parents think how old you have to be to ride a dirt bike. As a parent, whether it’s for your own interest or your child is asking for a dirt bike, you must have a clear idea if the bike would be suitable for them. If yes, then under what circumstances?
Kids of 3 years old are totally fine with electric dirt bikes. If your kiddo is 4, you can buy a gas dirt bike. Kids within 5-6 years of age are okay riding a 50cc dirt bike with or without training wheels according to their skills and bike controlling ability.
However, there is a lot to know before introducing your kid to their first dirt bike. Getting the right type of bike, things to consider while teaching how to ride, and dirt bike safety measures are equally important for you to know as a parent. This article will cover all this and other information regarding the topic.
Things to Know When Learning to Ride a Dirt Bike
Before you start the training sessions for your kid with the newly bought dirt bike, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind.
Use Proper Gear
Whether it’s only a toy electric bike or a 50cc dirt bike, your kid should wear all the safety gear before riding. It will protect the little one from injuries during falls.
And when it comes to falling during the ride, you cannot do anything about it. But, your kiddo must be well dressed, equipped, and prepared.
As a starter, your kid won’t need much power to ride. So, be sure to lower the throttle power output.
Introduce the Beginner with Controls
The rider needs to know about the controls and where these are. Your kid must have a clear idea about the throttle, brakes, and skill switch. Teach the rider when to use them and how to use them.
Choose an Open Area
During the early few days of training, it’s better to allow the kid to ride in an open area with minimal trees or rough surfaces.
It will help the kid to take over the bike’s control. Once the kid masters how to deal with the bike, you can allow the rider to bike on regular dirt biking terrain.
Types of Dirt Bikes
More or less, there are primarily 6 types of dirt bikes. Although each type doesn’t have a kid bike edition, still it’s worth knowing about all these bikes.
These bikes are for close-circuit racing competitions. Its long-travel suspension level has one of the most visible differences, along with the frame and body being lightweight and knobby tires.
Dual Sports Bikes
Unlike other types, dual sports bikes are ideal for riding on both on and off-road conditions. And these bikes are legal to ride on the street. Most dual sports bikes aren’t made for the competition.
It’s between motocross and dual sports bikes. Made for events and high endurance, you can ride an enduro bike on the streets without any formalities.
It is a dirt bike but converted for street use (remember dirt bike street legal procedure). Similar to Enduro and Motocross bikes in frames and body, these bikes have smaller wheels. The braking system is more like a regular road bike as well as the suspension settings.
These are specially designed dirt bikes for pro riders. Unlike regular dirt bikes, trail bikes don’t have any heat. Because the rider won’t sit down while riding down extreme terrains, the frame is pretty lightweight compared to other bikes.
As the name tells you, these bikes are for long driving where you will have to pass both smooth and rough terrains. Adventure bikes come in single or double cylinders that range from 650 to 1200cc with 4-stroke engines.
Choosing the Right Bike for Kids
While choosing a dirt bike for your kids, you must consider the age, skills, type of terrain where they will mostly ride on, etc., factors. The thing is, your kid shouldn’t feel frustrated with the very first off-road dirt bike.
As the hand strength of your kiddo isn’t the same as a teenager or an adult, the handlebar should be comfortable for the tiny hands. It must have a tight and comfortable grip to hold onto.
A dirt bike with easy to operate throttle will significantly improve the overall riding experience of your kid. An effective throttle would help the little one to maintain a steady course.
Comfortable Height and Size
The size of the bikes should not be too large or small that would make the kid feel uncomfortable. A bike with a comfortable and friendly posture would make the riding pretty easy and enjoyable.
Kids under 10 years old would be more than happy to ride a 2-stroke bike. A 4-stroke engine bike fits teenagers and skilled riders well.
Considering Age Groups
Bikes won’t be the same for kids of all ages. This section will exactly specify what type of bike your kid would need as the first dirt bike.
Even though most doctors are against giving toddlers bikes, parents still want their toddlers to ride on something safer while taking enough precautions.
If you want the same for the apple of your eyes, a 6V electric bike with training wheels should be more than enough as a starter bike. Make sure the speed doesn’t exceed 5 MPH.
Kids of this age group are crazy about riding bikes. And if you want a dirt bike to be their first training ride, an electric or battery-powered junior bike would be the best pick.
Riding at a 10 MPH speed is okay after the initial training ends. Be sure to attach training wheels until the kid can ride the bike without any assistance.
These kids most likely had experience with junior bikes, and they need a bit more powerful ride to improve their skills. A 50cc junior dirt bike would be more than enough for kids of this age group.
Kids of this age are more capable of handling powerful bikes of 70cc. If your kid is riding a 50cc bike for a while, it’s time you upgrade the ride to a 70cc model only if their skills can handle a more powerful engine and higher speed.
A teenager can easily handle a 125cc bike. If the kid is more trained and capable of riding a dirt bike, even a 250cc bike will be easier for him to ride on. If the kid participates in a dirt biking competition, pay attention to the type of bike they need.
Dirt Bike Riding Gear for Kids
Falling is an obvious thing while learning how to ride a bike. And if it’s on dirt bike terrain, the chance is even more. However, you can minimize the chance of injury by giving the kid proper gear to use while riding.
Be sure to get a full-face helmet for the kid. DOT should approve it to make sure the material is tough enough to protect the head during impact. The helmet should fit perfectly.
Mountain bike gloves or dirt bike gloves would do the job pretty well for tiny little hands.
If the terrain has a lot of sand and it’s extremely dry, then you must get goggles for the kiddo.
Your kid would need a pair of quality boots to keep the feet protected on the road.
Although it’s optional, if the kid is going through their initial days of riding a dirt bike, good body armor will give you peace of mind.
Elbow and Knee Guard
During any falls, elbows and knees get hurt the most. It would be best to get well-padded elbow and knee guards to make sure the kid doesn’t get hurt when falling.
Dirt Bike Safety and Kids
- Get a dirt bike of the right size according to your kid’s body height. Seat height is another factor that you must consider to make the ride comfortable and safe. The kid should be able to touch the ground with their feet without any struggle.
- Never allow the kid to go for a ride without the helmet.
- Trail riding is much safer than track riding. Most dirt bike accidents occur on official dirt bike tracks. So, until the kid learns advanced skills to ride on rough surfaces, please don’t allow them to go onto tracks.
- Although I hope that your kid doesn’t consume alcohol, it’s worth mentioning that this is the reason for over 50% of dirt bike fatalities.
After reading this article, we hope you got no confusion about when to introduce your kiddo to a dirt bike. If someone asks you how old you have to be to ride a dirt bike, you got many things to explain to that individual.
Apart from purchasing the right dirt bike, make sure you invest in quality bike gear to make your kid’s riding sessions safer.