Over the course of the summer we took the kid and his new favorite bike to a variety of trails that would allow him to test the bike in different conditions, but on trails and features he is familiar with. This would be his first experience on a full suspension bike and all of us were eager to see how it would work out.
His current bike is a hardtail from a quality manufacturer, but given the high weight and his low strength we have often watched him struggle through rock gardens. The back tire bounces around and his ability to choose lines is overshadowed by the need to just hang on and survive.
With this in mind his mom and I would take turns leading and sweeping with our boy riding between us so we could make observations on his body movements, bike movements, and the overall effectiveness of massive weight reduction, air suspension, and kid-friendly ergonomics.