Review: Early Rider Trailer Runner XL Balance Bike for Kids 2 to 3 Years Old


Standing apart with the glory of more than a decade and a half, The Early Rider Ltd. was established in 2006, with the sole purpose of designing bikes and two-wheelers for kids. Meticulously crafted and beautifully engineered, these bikes can be your kid’s best friend when it comes to their physical growth, furthermore improving their hand-eye coordination. Being a company headquartered in Oxfordshire, England, you can be sure about the product quality they’ve maintained for the last 14 years. Built with a hand-brushed, lacquered aluminum frame, faux-leather riveted saddle, and knobby tires, the Early Rider Trail Runner XL is a comparatively larger balance bike. At the price tag of $249, one can definitely consider it beauty on wheels.


Pros and Cons


  1. Steel frame guarantees safety and durability.
  2. Tubeless pneumatic tires provide a flat-free and long driving experience.
  3. The footrest provides rest to the feet while strolling for long hours.
  4. Lightweight
  5. Carbon-fiber seat post and faux-leather riveted saddle give the bike an attractive yet classy look and ensure it’s lightweight.
  6. Sealed bearings along with an integrated threadless aluminum headset compliment the very nature of this beauty.


  1. Handle brakes unavailable.
  2. Not recommended for larger-framed kids or toddlers on the taller side.
  3. Cleanly riveted yet exposed bolts might create hindrance while strolling or normal walking.


The bike comes in a silver shade with an awe-inspiring style that radiates energy and excitement. Made from aluminum, the Early Rider Balance Bike will cost you a shocking 249 bucks. With a wheelbase of 12″/14″, the bike is ideal for kids 2 to 3 years old with a weight up to 55lbs or 24.94kg.


The bike weighs around 8lbs or 3.63kg and has an adjustable seat. Adjustments can be made to the saddle from 13″ to 18.5″. The quick-release clamp makes the seat adjustment very convenient. The bike even comes with a detachable handlebar limiter and air-filled rubber tires.


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Paint Job

The Early Rider Trailer Runner XL Balance Bike, also referred to as the Alley Runner, is classified into two subtypes, the sports or the basic model and the pro or the premium model. The glossy steel frame on the sports model and aluminum frame on the pro model gives it a shiny chrome visual appeal. Not to mention its robust and functionally sophisticated features, which serve as a complement to the Alley Runner, giving it a “one of its kind” tag. With a glossy silver finish and matt black-rimmed foam tires, your kid is sure to have a lot of fun on this two-wheeled miniature beauty. The absence of different color options might appear to be a downside, but the available color combination is applaudable and worth every penny. Not much of a difference is observed between the ‘sports’ and the ‘pro’ model when considering the paint job. Prized for their beauty and utility, both models have a superior quality paint job that’ll keep your bike miles away from rusting. Also, the fun stickers and shiny color-ups add to its overall beauty.


Materials and Strength

As stated earlier, the two variants are constituted of different materials, steel and aluminum being the respective ones. Keeping in mind that the Alley Runner is designed specifically for toddlers, the weight of the two bikes doesn’t exceed a mere 8 lbs, thereby ensuring effective handling at the hands of a 3-4-year-old, making it light and sturdy. Despite being well riveted and carefully aligned, the “sports” model has to protrude round bolts that can hinder a child’s leg while walking and strolling. In contrast to this, the advanced ‘pro’ model uses flat bolts that are much safer.


Safety and Stability

Compared to the other bikes of the same price range, the Early Rider Trailer Runner XL Balance Bike has a lot to offer in the divisions of safety and standardized stability. Having an average size and ultralight weight is one of the many factors that make it a class apart and probably more versatile than other competitors. With a weight of 7.9 lbs, the Alley Rider is the lightest in the market for old preschoolers. While quick and light-weighted, the only downside of the Alley Runner is the lack of brakes. But it is not a deal-breaker as the test riders had no issues in stopping the bike. Another drawback of this model is its narrow handlebar which might create some difficulties for taller kids of the same age group. Both the models have a pre-fitted handlebar grip to serve the gripping function. However, the quality of the grips can be different in the two models, which is reasonable considering the price difference.


Wheel and Comfort

Available in both 12″ and 14″ wheel variate, installed with pneumatic mountain tires, the Alley Runner very well serves the purpose of an all-around fit for a 2-5-year-old. The bike has a set of rubber-based tires, which are ideal for multiple terrains. Though the foam tires provide less traction and less cushioning than the air tires, the foam tires will work just fine on pavements and standard roads. Having a little less than two dozen spokes in the wheel, along with a 10″ wheelbase, the Alley Runner is sure to provide a sturdy grip and traction, quite enough to compensate for every turn and bump on the road.


With an adjustable seat height ranging from 15″ to a peak of 19″, the well-served function of this bike is proven again. The saddle is ergonomically designed and made out of carbon fiber, meticulously crafted to make sure that kids can ride for numerous hours without getting irritated.


The handlebar has perfect gripping, thereby ensuring effective and well-managed control for a toddler. Pneumatic tires with aluminum rims and notched fork ends offer a quick assembly without any hassle.


The absence of a footrest is reasonable considering the overall inseam height (14.7″) of the vehicle.


Extra Features

The bike comes with an adjustable saddle and a steering limiter when it comes to the extra accessories. As for the customization options, the manufacturers provide a plethora of options such as grips, helmets, gloves, belt gates, brakes, saddles, and much more.


Speaking of the warranty, the company provides a one-year warranty on the parts. Considering the competition in the market, I think it should be increased at least up to two years.



The Early Rider Trailer Runner XL Balance Bike is beautiful to look at in all its pristine, sturdy, resilient, and high-quality details. The paint job is elegant, classy, and durable, and so is the basic structural framework. Magnificently crafted and equally well displayed, this beauty with its 12″ and 14″ inch wheels could prove to be your kid’s best friend and a well-orchestrated learning tool.


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