by, April 18th, 2009 at 10:38 PM (1235 Views)
Well, took my son to the PowerKids Duathlon today. He won the 10 year old boys division. The race was a 1/2 mile run, 2 mile bike, and 1/4 mile run. I felt kind of bad for him on the bike because mom naively assumed that all the kids his age would be on mountain bike type bikes. I was surprised at the number of sophisticated racing bikes some kids 10 and under had. A girl that had a nice-looking racing bike won the 10 and under division overall and looked like a mini-pro on her bike. My son hung in there the best he could and averaged about 16 mph on the mountain bike which I think is pretty good for a 10 year old kid. Still, I felt bad for him trying to keep up with the kids on the road bikes. Without me saying a word, he is smart enough to know the difference between the two types of bikes and the advantage of a road bike.
I'm not sure what to do next time. On the one hand, I want my child to feel like he has a level playing field when he competes. Should I be willing to shell out several hundred dollars for a road bike that he may only use once or twice and may outgrow next year? I really wanted to wait until he was 14 or 15 and had grown before buying him a true road bike. At least he'd get some mileage out of it.