I’ve always wondered about scooters. They look like so much fun, but not really for a self-respecting mum. So, when we were sent a Microscooter set for mum and child to try, we sent them off to Tanya and Tabby, a PlayPennies mum and daughter to try out for us.
She had loads to say about the Microscooters, so I’ll let her get right to it. “I was sent the limited edition Microscooter for Tabby with a bright orange base and multicoloured handlebars. These have been quite a topic of conversation with other kids and their mums on the school run commenting on the bright colours. It’s also been really popular with the kids, so that’s a cool start right there.”
Assembling the Microscooters, Tanya says, were one word: Easy. Also, the handlebars pop in and out and the back folds up for easy storage, with both scooters fitting neatly behind a table in the kitchen.
This scooter is different to most kid’s scooters in that it is not steered by turning the handlebars as per the usual design, but is controlled by leaning. You lean the handlebars to the left and it goes left, and so on.
Despite the ease of assembly, it wasn’t all easy going. In fact, it took Tabby a few goes before she got the hang of the scooter.
“With the Microscooter, our first scoot was a failure. She got about two minutes from our front door and got off crying. She couldn't turn the corners and didn't understand the leaning idea. She got frustrated that she couldn't just figure it out and get good instantly and so rejected the idea.”
Tabby fell sick the next day so it was another week before they could try again, but it was the same. Still, with encouragement she did persevere and the following week she asked if she could ride it to school.
“I wasn't sure this was a good idea - it could mean that I would have to carry the damn thing for two miles there and back - but I had to give her the benefit of the doubt.”
Tanya loved her scooter. “My scooter was awesome and it can be used by Tabby as soon as she is confident enough to do so. This means it can really work well for everyone as the adult scooter is as brilliant as the kids one.
Look, you probably think that an adult scooting beside their kid to school is a bit sad and dodgy right? Well, yes and no. I am not going to lie to you and tell you that I was NOT self-conscious because I was, but I ended up having so much fun that I honestly didn't care by the time I got home.”
Tanya is of the opinion that if you have ever ridden a bike, you’ll be fine. It’s easy to balance on, and zooms really fast. She does say it hits your ankles when you carry it over sidewalks and crossings, but at least she’s developed superb reflexes when crossing the road!
On their first ride to school, Tabby met up with a friend who was on her scooter, and this gave her the impetus she needed.
“She sped up, got more confident and was hurtling along gleefully when we reached the school. Her friend's mother was utterly bemused by me riding a scooter but did agree to try it out. I held her dog, she scooted with the kids. She came back with the same idiotic grin as I did - it is FUN.”
And it is tiring. Part of the whole scooting thing is that you will get fit doing it. Especially if you keep going and actually do some exercise on it.
“We have gone for long scoots along the beachfront and I have to tell you that my hips and bum do hurt from the up and down of scooting. And I have been so out of breath going up the hill to her school that I've had to stop and get it back. Now I can do it but that is because I have built up fitness as a result. I am dead impressed with this as I never expected to work as hard as I do to get moving. The only downer is that I am either too heavy or fat because I can't get the scooter to freewheel down hills! It goes for a bit and then stops. Bah Humbug.”
The scooters have another feature worth mentioning - built in brakes. It's a flap of plastic that sits over the rear wheel. You use your foot to press down on it so it slows you and stops you. “You can pretty much screech to a halt without flipping over forwards - a bonus in my view. You obviously need to have your feet in the right place though - you have them too far forward or backward on the base and then hit the brakes and you could flip backwards or forwards. It takes practise but works a charm. So it has taken days of doing little stops and goes with Tabby to get her used to using the brake instead of her foot on the ground (or the scooter crashing in to the wall).”
Would you buy these? We asked Tanya. “Yes”.
Is it worth the price? We wanted to know. “Definitely”.
Well, that sounds great to me.