Bikes are a quintessential part of American childhood, but given the number of accidents that happen, there's a legitimate reason for parents or guardians to pause before shelling out cash for a set of two wheels. One company featured on Shark Tank, Guardian Bikes, has set out to reduce those stats and give kids a drastically improved level of safety.

The key is in the brakes

Guardian Bikes developed a braking system the founders describe as being similar to anti-lock brakes in cars. The award-winning SureStop design uses just one lever rather than two to control your child's stop, fully engaging the back break but intelligently adjusting how much to engage the front brake. That basically means that your kid can't slow the front wheel down too fast, reducing the chances the bike will flip forward and send your child over the handlebars.

At the same time, because you do get brakes working on both the front and back wheels, the bike stops faster than if you used only rear brakes. The positioning of the lever on the right side is based on research that showed Guardian Bikes that 80% of riders grab the lever on that side, either because of fear of using the left lever or because of right-hand dominance.

But don't miss these features, either

Another safety element Guardian Bikes has put into their design is a lighter frame that extends the wheel base and lowers the bike's bottom bracket. Those changes move your child a little closer to the ground, which makes balancing a little easier. With better balance and a frame that's not so heavy, kids both learn to ride faster and have better control.

Your options

Right now, Guardian makes three main types of bikes, including:

  • 20-inch single speed
  • 20-inch geared bikes
  • 24-inch geared bikes

You can find the right size for your child using the company's website. And pssst. The company is putting the braking system into adult bikes, too. We'll just leave that right there as a big suggestion.