A bicycle is a great way to be alone with yourself. But it’s also a great way to spend time with your nearest and dearest. We’ll break down the best options for riding safely and comfortably with kids.
Selecting equipment and gear
The right equipment will make your cycling experiments safer, more comfortable, and more enjoyable for everyone involved. You’ll need specialized equipment. For example, a child’s seat or a bike tow. But there is no need to buy a huge amount of children’s cycling clothing – unless you decide you need it.
The most important criterion for choosing a helmet is that it should fit well. You can visit your local store and choose one that will fit comfortably on your child’s head.
Since your passenger is not actively moving or overheating, ventilation is not as important.
Make sure you put the helmet on correctly – your forehead should be protected. To avoid overtightening the straps and pinching the skin, you can hold your finger between the chin and strap as you tighten it.
Sunscreen and/or light clothing that covers your legs and arms can help you avoid sunburn. Children strapped in a child safety seat also have a very vulnerable neck.
Remember that your child will not be moving while riding. He will need an extra layer of clothing to keep him comfortable.
Your child can get very cold when riding in the winter, including in the bike trailer and electric cargo bike. Wrap up your child well.
A ski overall would be a good option. A balaclava, worn under the helmet (remove the helmet inserts if necessary), will help protect the ears and nose.
Children under the age of four or five usually ride as passengers. Fortunately, they’re still small, and driving them with the proper equipment isn’t difficult at all.
Most child seats have a system of attachment to the back of the bike, similar to a bicycle rack. There are some seats that have a front-mount system-usually they mount on the top tube of the bike, between the saddle and the handlebars.
Make sure your bike has the necessary attachment points for a child seat on the frame (most child seats have their own attachment system to fit most bikes).
A child seat is a great choice for outings in good weather and will fit most children from nine months to three to four years old. The weight limit is usually 18-20 pounds.
When installing, make sure the seat is no farther from the axle of the back wheel. Having weight beyond this point will seriously interfere with bike control. With a wide handlebar, either straight or raised, it will be easier to control the bike.
Front-mounted seats don’t affect bike control as much, but you have to ride with your knees wide apart. It works for a couple of kilometers, but it is not a good option for long rides.
On safety: Very important – clothes with flapping ends, feet, fingers – all this can get into the spokes of the wheel. All trailers have protective side panels, and most seats have footrests and locking straps. Untied shoelaces, scarves, or elastic mittens can create additional risk. Also periodically check the tightness of bolts, eccentrics, and other connections on your cycling equipment.
During long rides, regularly inquire about the morale and physical condition of your passenger. If necessary, support both with stops and snacks. Adults usually “start to get tired,” but a child can get tired instantly, get frustrated, and start crying. Or just fall asleep.