At Strider Sports International, we’re enthusiastic about bike riding. Some would say we’re even a bit obsessive.
But we’ve channeled our cycling mania to rethink the way a child should learn to ride a bike.
As a parent of two boys, Ryan McFarland became frustrated with the drawbacks of traditional beginner’s bikes.
"Tricycle tip-overs" and "training-wheel wobbles" create a fear, hesitancy, and dislike of bike riding. And, after tinkering with several ideas, the answer hit Ryan: Balance and coordination should be taught before pedaling.
Yes, the traditional methods of learning to ride a bike have it backwards. Tricycles and training wheels place too much of the focus on learning to pedal.
Bike riding becomes a breeze when you teach your child balance and coordination before pedaling.
The patented STRIDER™ Balance Bike (Pat. No. D629,049 & Pat. Pending) has been meticulously designed to teach your child balance and coordination. From its lightweight design to its center of gravity and low seat height, the STRIDER™ is a bike your child can easily control. And most importantly, the STRIDER™ is a bike that will develop glittering confidence and a lifelong love for bicycling. Dare we say it will become your child's favorite toy?
Born into a mechanical family, Ryan McFarland’s grandfather was a race car engineer and competed against racing legend Al Unser. And Ryan’s father, Joe, owned a motorcycle dealership.
This early exposure to vehicles and all things mechanical influenced Ryan -- at the age of five -- to ride dirt bikes. And later in life, he added mountain bike, dirt bike and stock car racing as a hobby.
With these experiences under his belt -- in addition to a natural inclination to tinker -- Ryan invented the world-renowned and U.S. Patented Thudbuster suspension seat-post for bicycles. TheThudbuster is widely recognized as the premier suspension seat-post design in the biking industry. And the inventions continued when Ryan also developed a U.S. Patented suspension system for wheel chairs.
Today, Ryan combines his passion for his children and bike riding by bringing you the STRIDER™ Balance Bike.
Love and enthusiasm drove Ryan to buy a 12” pedal bike for his two-year-old son. But frustration set in quickly once Ryan discovered that traditional bicycles and tricycles were simply too big and unsafe for his little boy.
Ryan's mission became to build a bike that his son could ridewithout injury or fear.
The first step was to head down to his local K-Mart to purchase the smallest and lightest bike he could find. Afterwards, Ryan went home, stripped off the components from the frame, cut out the upper frame rails, lowered the seat, cut and re-welded the handlebars and cut down the seat-post. (And of course he painted it to match his dirtbike!)
|The Three Amigos: Ryan, Joe and Gene|
Voila! STRIDER #1 is born.
At this time, Ryan did not intend to start a company. He simply wanted his son to have the best bike riding experience possible.
But several other parents inquired about the bike prompting Ryan to start Strider Sports International, Inc, with Gene Woodle, a longtime friend, motorcycle enthusiast and patent attorney. Ryan also partnered with the very first person who turned him on to the joy of riding on two wheels -- his father Joe McFarland.
And the three amigos have been on a wild ride ever since!