- 1 Hoverboard for 3 Year Olds
- 1.1 Safe Hoverboards For Three-Year-Olds
- 1.2 Adjustable Speed Hoverboards
- 1.3 General Specifications For Maximum Safety
- 1.4 Conclusion
Hoverboards are not designed for three-year-olds, so finding one that they can safely ride is quite difficult.
Children of this age are generally safer riding an electric scooter for several reasons:
- Motor skills are not fully developed
- Average weight is under 40 pounds
- Reflexes are not fully developed
- Do not fully understand operation or dangers of the toy
Hoverboard for 3 Year Olds
Toddlers need to develop strength in the trunk muscles before attempting to ride a toy that requires complex movements to guide it.
But if your three-year-old just must have a hoverboard like his older siblings, here are some general guidelines in what to look for. Keep in mind, there are other options for bigger or smaller children, see 4 year old and 2 year old for more info.
Safe Hoverboards For Three-Year-Olds
If you are unable to find a hoverboard that matches all the preceding guidelines, your toddler can still enjoy the thrill of the ride with a little improvisation.
Hoverboard to go-cart
The Baley Hoverboard Hover Kart attaches to hoverboards with 6.5”, 8”, or 10” wheels. This transforms the hoverboard into a go-cart for your toddler to ride.
This negates the minimum weight capacity since the frame will weigh more than enough to make the hoverboard cooperate properly.
The possibility of falls is eliminated since the child is sitting, and toddlers can guide the cart with the attached bar.
The extra length of the frame reduces the likelihood of personal impact if the cart collides with another object.
This allows them to join the bigger kids in the fun of riding without putting them at unnecessary risk of injury.
Adjustable Speed Hoverboards
If possible, it is safest to get a hoverboard that has adjustable speeds. This will allow you to start your toddler out at speeds slow enough to match his undeveloped reflexes.
Toddlers will need to learn how to steer even if the cart frame is attached to the hoverboard.
They will need time to understand which motion produces the intended result. A board that can be slowed down to an appropriate speed can help them develop these skills while keeping them safe.
Then the speed can be increased as their abilities increase.
A hoverboard such as the Tomoloo is a great choice. This hoverboard can be controlled by a smart phone app to place the speed at beginner settings.
This board is powerful enough for a fun ride without being too wild and dangerous for a little kid. They can ride on the go-cart attachment until they are big enough to ride standing up.
You can start them out at slow speeds until they are skilled at guiding the contraption, and gradually increase speed as they get bigger.
At the least, a hoverboard equipped with a learner mode will provide some safeguards against accidents caused by too much speed.
Always make sure your child is wearing an appropriately sized helmet when riding, even if the hoverboard has been converted to a go-cart.
There is still the possibility of impact with a larger object if your child gets carried away and forgets to watch where he is going.
There is also the possibility of inclines tipping the cart over which could injure your child.
Helmets are usually adjustable and can be used for several years if there is no direct impact to the helmet.
Always replace a helmet that has experienced a direct impact since the force of the impact can compromise the helmet’s level of protection.
Knee and Elbow Pads
Skinned knees and elbows may be a rite of passage, but they’re certainly no fun. There is no need for your child to experience this type of pain when a simple pad can keep his knees and elbows safe.
These Knee pads and elbow pads are for more than protection against skinned joints. Hard falls can jam these joints causing:
- extreme pain
- limited mobility
- joint deformity
Cushioned pads help to protect the joints against a direct hit in the event of a fall.
Equally important as elbow and knee pads are wrist pads. In the event of a fall, reflexes make us through out our hands to catch ourselves.
This is the body’s way of protecting the head from blunt trauma.
The problem is that this is an excellent way to fracture a wrist, especially in young children whose bones are still a bit soft.
Wrist pads help to absorb some of the shock from, the impact and provide at least a modicum of protection against fracture.
They also help to protect the palms against concrete burn if one lands on the hands.
Finally, we will consider the proper footwear toddlers should use when riding. Whether they ride in the traditional fashion o in the go-cart style, they need sturdy, comfortable shoes.
Their shoes should not be too large or too tight; a snug fit is best. No open shoes or flip-flops should be worn when riding a hoverboard.
For toddlers, Velcro shoes are usually best since untied shoelaces pose a risk in themselves. The sole of the shoe should grip well; slick-soled shoes will increase the risk of falling.
If possible, the top of the shoe should reach above the child’s ankle to provide stability to immature joints. This will reduce the likelihood of a sprained ankle or torn ligaments.
General Specifications For Maximum Safety
The safest hoverboard for a three-year-old has:
- A maximum speed of five miles per hour
- A minimum weight capacity of thirty pounds
- Four and one-half inch wheels
- The ability to self-balance
We will look at the reasons for these guidelines to help you better understand the risks of three-year-olds riding hoverboards.
Five MPH Limit
Your toddler’s hoverboard should not go faster than five miles per hour because his reflexes are not developed enough to adequately steer the board away from obstacles.
He may not have the proper muscles strength or motor skills to turn the board using only the motion of his hips.
Nor does he have the foresight and good judgement to avoid danger.
He only knows the thrill of the ride, not the dangers associated with it. He doesn’t know to watch for uneven terrain or breaks in the concrete.
He doesn’t have the ability to think through the proper responses if the board gets into trouble. He may not know what to do if the board ventures onto the road.
The faster the board goes, the greater the chance that he will run into something or be thrown off. This can inflict severe injury.
The board needs to go slowly enough that you can keep up with him on foot and help him stay out of danger while he enjoys himself on the ride.
Most hoverboards have a minimum weight limit of forty pounds. Few three-year-olds meet this requirement.
With a weight less than the minimum weight limit, the hoverboard may not sense when your child is standing on it. This may cause it to work erratically or not at all.
Erratic functioning can throw your child off and result in serious injury.
Not reaching minimum weight also means that your child’s ability to guide the board will be compromised.
The hoverboard may not sense the signals to stop or turn if your child is not heavy enough. It is important to your child’s safety that all manufacturer warnings and recommendations are followed.
Four And One-Half Inch Wheels
It is extremely difficult to find hoverboards that have wheels smaller than six and one-half inches. But for your toddler’s safety their hoverboard’s wheels should be no more than four and one-half inches.
The reason for this is that the larger the wheels, the faster the board goes. We have already discussed the danger of faster speeds with children of this age.
It is simply too dangerous to allow a toddler to ride a hoverboard at speeds exceeding five miles per hour.
Most hoverboards with 4.5” wheels run between three and five miles per hour. This is the safest speed for children under five years old.
Most of today’s hoverboards can self-balance and this is most important for your three-year-old.
Toddlers do not have the fine motor skills or proper control of the trunk muscles to balance themselves on a moving object.
They may not even be able to keep themselves upright on the board once it is moving. This is a big enough challenge for adults, let alone toddlers.
If their hoverboard does not balance itself, it will make it much more difficult and dangerous for them to ride.
A fall on concrete or pavement can cause serious or even fatal injuries. For maximum safety, make sure that your child’s hoverboard can balance itself.
Most hoverboard manufacturers recommend that riders be at least six years old because of the complexity of maneuvering these machines.
They are just more complicated than a three-year-old is capable of handling. Severe injury can result from ignoring manufacturers’ warnings.
However, it is extremely difficult to explain to a toddler why he can’t enjoy the same things everybody else enjoys.
The preceding options provide a way for your toddler to be included in the fun without needing a trip to the ER.