Or rather, you're gonna get worked up. And a lot of it. The derailleur is very important for comfortable, easy
and enjoyable ride, which is why you'll find it on kids' and junior bikes from size 20 upwards.
A bike with a derailleur is a big thing for little athletes. It means they've reliably grown up
to their beginner's bikes and are already proficient cyclists who can handle another
component. Although mastering a derailleur can be a bit of a challenge in the beginning, it's
a key skill that allows children to better control and use their bike and one that they are very
quickly get used to.
What is a derailleur anyway?
The derailleur is one of the basic and very important components that fundamentally
The gearbox is a fundamental element of the bike's handling. Simply put - a derailleur works by,
when you press the lever on the handlebars, it moves the chain over the sprockets, which are
on the rear wheel and pedals (or just the rear wheel). It allows the cyclist to
change speeds and thus adjust the resistance on the pedals depending on the terrain and performance.
Shifting on children's bikes
On children's and junior bikes, the chain is shifted only at the rear. When the child uses the lever on the
handlebars, the derailleur moves and shifts the chain at the back of the bike to another cog. Different
The different sized wheels then cause each wheel to turn at a different speed with the same pedalling rhythm.
The larger the wheel the child chooses, the less resistance there is on the pedals and the pedalling is easier but the ride
slower. Conversely, the smaller the wheel, the greater the resistance on the pedals and therefore the more demanding the pedalling
and more speed.
If this is the first time your child is using a derailleur, the principles of the derailleur need to be carefully explained to them.
explain and familiarise them with its use. Therefore, before the ride, show him how to
how the lever changes the speed and how it affects the movement of the bike. Explain to him in which
situations in which the derailleur can help him and how to use it correctly.
Let the child try the gearshift before riding. Lift the rear wheel, turn it
the pedals and let the child shift gears. This will give him or her a better idea of how the gearshift works and also help him or her practice the necessary movements. It is also important to try the gearshift while riding. For the first ride, always choose a quiet, level place where the child will not be distracted. It is important to take into account that the child will tend to pay a lot of attention to the gearshift at first (often even bending his head towards it), so it is essential that he does not have to deal with steering and braking coordination at the same time and that he is not in danger of hitting an obstacle. Let your child experiment with the derailleur, try different speeds and teach them how to shift properly so they don't put unnecessary strain on the chain. The child learns very quickly, so he or she will soon know how to manipulate the derailleur for a good ride.
Shifting tips and tricks
It is essential to teach your child that he/she must shift at the same time as pedalling, not when the chain is in traction. When
when going uphill or on rough terrain, it is advisable to change to one of the larger wheels, and reduce
the speed and the effort. On flat ground, he can then select the middle to smaller wheels and when riding
downhill, the bottom half to the smallest wheel. So, in simple terms, the bigger the wheel,
the higher the climb and, conversely, the smaller the wheel, the higher the descent.
A derailleur will make a big difference to your cycling life and extend the length of your trips.
With a derailleur, your child can find the appropriate weight for a comfortable and smooth ride, and
especially on longer routes, to minimize fatigue and maintain a comfortable pace.