How do you ensure that your child likes to ride its bike, come rain, sunshine or snow? In our opinion it’s by giving it a bike which it likes and which works well throughout the seasons!
Disclosure: The woom Bike was provided for free to us for this review. As you know: I’m keepin’ it real and tell you how it is - I maintain full editorial control of the content published on Hiking in Finland. Read the Transparency Disclaimer for more information on affiliate links & blogger transparency.
That we are a family which ride their bikes year-round I wrote earlier this year, and now I want to shed a bit of light on the latest addition to our bike shed: The woom 5. woom makes bikes exclusively for kids, and that you can see in their products: They are made for the needs of kids, and not just some fancy, miniaturised version of an adult bike. The woom bikes are light, safe for the rider and safe in traffic, and there’s a host of functional and pretty accessories available for the bike. That they do it for kids you can see for yourself when you have a woom bike in front of you, as around 85% of their bike parts are individually designed and produced exclusively for woom, customized to fit the needs of small anatomies.
Now we have owned several non-woom bikes for our kids before we made the switch, and I have done plenty of research on the topic, too. One thing you’ll read in review after review is that the lighter a kids bike is, the better it is for the child. From our own experience with some very cheap kids bikes which were heavy as two bags of cement we can confirm: The lighter the bike, the more fun the rider has. woom bikes are around 40% lighter than comparable kids bikes, so as an ultralight backpacker this is obvious very positive, too. But enough about facts and stats, lets dive in to our subjective observations of riding the bike for almost three months.
Now our son was already riding a woom 4 which he and we loved, but the one thing which became obvious as time went on was that the bike got too small for him. The woom 4 is made for kids between a height of 115 and 130 cm, though realistically I’d say that after 125 cm one should switch to the bigger bike. The woom 5 is made for kids between a height of 125 and 145 cm, and for our son it’s right now the perfect bike. Where in the past I had to say several times on a trip “Please cycle faster!” nowadays, since he’s on the woom 5, I have to ask him to slow down. He’s soooo fast on the new bike that he really likes to challenge us to races, and often enough wins! Thanks to the adjustable seat post and the vario stem the bike grows with him, and we hope that he’ll be able to ride this bike for a year or two (and that simply depends on how fast he grows!).
Going fast also means he needs to brake, and the the V-Brakes on the bike are so good that it takes little effort for him to stop safely. The SRAM X4 8-speed derailleur and the easy grip shift make switching gears easy as pie when we go up hills or ride into the wind, and the tires it comes with have a low rolling resistance and great grip from asphalt to single track trails and gravel roads. The Geometry also is great, because he can easily get on and off the bike and if he wants to stand on his feet, for example when taking in a view or waiting at a stop light, the top tube is at a friendly height.
Just a few words on assembling the bike before we wrap up this review. The bike is delivered in a 120 x 62 x 22 cm box and weighs around 10 kg (the bike itself is 8,2 kg light), and it comes with all the tools you need to assemble the bike. You can add a host of useful accessories to the bike, from the mandatory Fenders (which I yet have to install!) over the Kickstand to the bell. We also got a Size L woom Helmet in the same colour as his bike, and while the previous helmet had some shortcomings we hope this one will survive the next Finnish winter. It is, other than the problem with the extreme cold, a great helmet which is well ventilated, easy to adjust and our son can open and close it easily thanks to the magnetic buckle closure.
All in all our son and us are very happy with the latest addition to our bike shed. He enjoys cycling now even more (as he can go so fast) and a lot of his friends have come up to him and wanted to ride his cool bike. I keep on repeating myself, but he cycles fast thanks to the bigger tires and the correct size for his height, and I think we’ll try to squeeze in some bike trips before winter is coming as he seems to be able to easily ride 40 km a day with some ice cream and Pulla breaks in-between. I also intend to go ride some easy single trails with him here in Vaasa, as he has enjoyed the short bits where we were riding in the forests a lot.
So to sum things up, if you want that your child enjoys cycling then the best thing you can do is get them a bike which makes them want to ride. The woom 5 definitely is such a bike for our son, as he loves to ride (fast!) on it, be it to school, to the beach or the ice cream parlour. The bike is safe, handles really well, is specially made for kids with great attention to details and easy to maintain for me. We are looking forward to many more rides together, both in town and on trails!
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