Bicycle lovers not only enjoy riding a bike, but they are in a hurry to encourage their children towards this activity as soon as possible. The sooner a child masters the skills of cycling, the sooner it will be possible to get out into family cycling trips. But very often parents wonder: ‘’When is the right time for biking with a baby?’’ In this article, we are going to figure it out, find out what special bike accessories adults may use for their kids first. However, remember that the baby’s safety on the road is the most important thing in this regard.
How Soon Can I Bike With My Baby?
The proper age to start biking with your tot is 12 months. In this case, it is reasonable to follow the advice of pediatricians and child psychologists. They recommend that parents can cycle with their toddler only when he has learned to sit confidently and long by himself. By the age of about 12 months, the baby’s spine is already strengthened, the neck is strong enough to keep the helmet during a ride. However, besides the child’s ability to sit, it’s necessary to take into account such an essential point as his very attitude to cycling. During his first bike trips, he may probably feel fear and stress. But usually, children immediately perceive this type of movement with great pleasure.
Choices for Cycling with Kids
Nowadays parents may choose between different options to ride with their kids. We are going to consider vehicles for both infants and older kids.
Is cycling with newborns possible? A lot of parents are very concerned about this question. But to ease parent’s life, we would highly recommend spending their money on a bike trailer that is designed with a high-quality suspension system and covered with a cloth or plastic material. Such a container is attached to the rear wheel of an adult bike and reliably protects the baby.
However, don’t use helmets for newborn babies if you ride them in a trailer. They might be too heavy for them. That’s why it’s advisable to use a special soft headrest for baby’s head. So, biking with a newborn is possible only in a kid bike trailer.
At the age of one or over, you can put your child either into a bike trailer or a bike seat.
A bicycle seat for a child should be equipped with protection for the baby’s feet so that their legs do not accidentally get into the moving parts of the bike. The seat should have a high back and reliable seat belts that can support the weight of the child if he falls asleep. Nowadays you may choose between front and back-mounted baby kid seats.
Another product which is becoming popular is a cargo bike or in other words a family bike. There are two options for this kind of bicycle with front loading and rear loading. One of the most widespread models of a cargo bike is “long tail” bicycle.
A family bike is quite stable which allows you to ride with two kids simultaneously. It features big storage and electric options. The last ones are especially beneficial for riding up and down. Unlike baby bike trailers, children can easily talk with their parents on a cargo bike.
By the age of 2.5-3 years old, you can start putting a child on a tricycle. At first, you may show your kid how to pedal, brake and turn. At the start, you have to support the baby’s back and help him to direct the three-wheeler bike.
Such a kind of transport is more stable and it’s quite difficult to fall off it. In the beginning, your kid can come off the bike, so it’s crucial to put on a high-quality and comfortable helmet on the baby’s head. So, if your child already runs, jumps and kicks a ball, then he is ready for a tricycle, and he can easily pedal.
Then, everything will depend on individual baby’s skills, abilities, his physical development, the frequency of cycling and of course parent’s patience. If we are talking about the age at which a child can first ride a bicycle, keep in mind that a baby has to walk and to be strong enough to sit on his own and hold the handlebar. Usually, by the age of 5-6 years, a baby can comfortably ride a two-wheeled bicycle. Just keep in mind that the size of the vehicle must match the baby’s growth and weight.
So, it’s up to you which of the options mentioned above are the best for you. In our opinion, all of them are worth the parents’ attention. But first of all, choose that product which will fit your baby’s age and size. To sum it up, for babies under 12 months it’s better to use a child bike trailer, and for older kids – a cargo bike, front-mounted or rear-mounted baby bike seats.
Basic Safety Rules and Tips
1. You can cycle with a baby if he already can hold his head without your help. For riding in some accessories in particular in baby bike trailers, your little one has to sit by his own.
2. If you decided to cycle with a baby, you have to buy a lightweight helmet due to your baby’s head size. It will help to prevent or minimize head injuries in case of an accident.
3. Fasten your baby with a safety harness. Buckle on all the straps and clasps every time you want to bike with a toddler.
4. Clarify if your bicycle is compatible with a bike trailer or bike seat since each bike model has its construction and design.
5. Assure yourself that your bike is equipped with footrests that prevent getting baby’s feet into the wheel spokes during a cycling trip.
6. The choice of baby bike carrier also dependable on the place where you live. But always steer away from a lot of traffic while you are cycling with your tot. Allow your child to ride a bike only in safe places such as on the pavements, bike paths, not too busy sidewalks near the house or along the park paths. Always be near your little one to control the situation. Never let your kid cycle on the roadway.
7. Extra weight may also cause wreck of a bicycle or weaken some of its parts. That’s why always check all the bolts on your bike before you want to cycle with your child.
8. Before cycling with your tot, assure yourself that you are familiar with all the laws of your district. For example, there are countries which forbid to cycle with children who are under 12 months while other ones demand to put on a helmet which isn’t very appropriate for infants.
Cycling with children is a fantastic activity that makes parents and kids closer. At present, parents may choose between different options. Today’s market is full of many products such as baby bike seats, trailers, cargo bikes, tricycles that are worth buying. All of them are designed for a certain baby’s age. Many adults wonder how to bike with newborns. For this purpose, baby bike trailers have been invented.
So, if you are a big lover of cycling and want to make your life easier, we will highly recommend you all of these goods mentioned above. But remember that all kinds of bike carriers and bicycles have to meet all safety standards and requirements because baby’s safeness is above all.