Taking a young child on a bicycle ride is a good way to show them the fun of bicycling. This video is a good example of a front mounted children’s bicycle safety seats. Kids bike seats back mounted are also popular and discussed here. However, there are several safety “violations” in the video. Can you spot them? We’ll mention them at the end of the article.
On the positive side, notice the clearance Mom has for her knees. The seat is no impediment to her her leg movement either when pedaling or when she stops and has to balance the bike. With the seat front mounted, mother’s arms offer additional protection to her child and she has control of the child’s movements. More importantly, it is easier to handle the weight of a child when it is positioned in front of the rider and between her arms.
This video demonstrates a center mounted children’s bicycle safety seats. It has the same advantages as the front mounted typed but positions the child closer to the rider and more in line with the rider’s center of gravity. Like any other activity we do with children we should always put safety first. Safety becomes a concern if we want to have the child ride the same bicycle we do. Some parents may not feel comfortable with the child riding behind them.
With a rear mounted children’s bicycle safety seat on a bicycle the center of gravity is changed and some parents are concerned, rightly so, that movement from the child may make balancing and controlling the bike harder. The higher the seat is above the rear axle and the weight of the child are factors to consider when purchasing a child carrier for a bicycle.
Design changes have made it possible for parents and children to enjoy safer and more comfortable bike rides. Even when all the safety precautions have been taken, like helmets for both parent and child, safety check of bike before going on ride and proper clothing and footwear, there still may be a concern with the child riding behind the parent. You can also buy a balance bike for your little kid to learn balance first and then try regular one. The balance bike does not have any pedals and your kid can learn more easily to balance. We will be discussing more about how to choose a good balance bike in UK later in this article.
Many parents want to be able to see their child. Others feel it is easier to steer, balance and control the bicycle with the child in front of them. The solution for parents with these concerns may be the center mounted or front mounted bicycle safety seats. Center mounted child carriers position the child directly in front of the rider and on the cross bar of the bike.
Front mounted child carriers mount on the handle bar stem and position the child well forward. This positioning allows for unrestricted leg movement so no knee knocking on the carrier. The front or center mounted carriers also offer the child the added protection of the parents arms. Personally, I have ridden many, many miles on a bicycle. Sixty to one hundred mile rides were not uncommon. I know from experience handling any additional weight, be it from cargo or a child in a safety carrier, is easier when the weight is in front of me.
Advantages to having the child ride in front of the parent. The child gets a better view and will likely enjoy the ride more. Because the parent can control and observe the child’s movements there is less chance of losing one’s balance. Experts agree mounting the carrier in the center versus over the rear tire provided better stability and protects against unexpected weight shifts by the child.
It is always a good idea to check as many sources as possible when researching a purchase. I recommend checking the Consumer Product Safety Commission website for information on the products you may purchase. To the Mom in the first video we would make the following safety recommendations:
Rider should also be wearing an approved an approved helmet. In fact, we strongly recommend all riders of any age and skill level wear a helmet. If the bike does not have a chain guard, and the bike in this video does not appear to, a clip or elastic band of some sort should be used to hold long pants or trousers close to the leg to prevent fouling the chain. Catastrophic accidents can occur when the chain is suddenly jammed by a pants leg. The bicycle will stop immediately, often throwing the rider forward over the handle bars. A rear-view mirror, which can be easily attached to a pair of sunglasses, will allow the rider to monitor traffic coming up behind them.
What is Balance Bike
A balance bike is a two-wheeled pedal-less bike that teaches kids as young as 18-months to balance on two wheels. The aim of a Balance Bike is to focus on learning how to balance and to then let steering come naturally. There are so many reasons to choose a balance bike instead of a bike with stabilisers or a trike as your child’s first bike. As well as improving balance, steering skills are developed as the child has full control over the handlebars, and therefore direction, of the bike. After a brief learning period, toddlers and kids learn to ride, jump and coast on their bikes with no assistance from their parents.
By having no pedals the child can concentrate on learning the art of balance by sitting on the saddle and propelling themselves forward with a striding motion, keeping one or two feet on the ground at all times. Most cycle instructors agree it’s best to learn to balance first, before moving on to pedaling unaided. As balance improves, the number of pushes needed to move around will reduce so that within no time at all your child is ‘scooting’ along, with their body weight positioned to give stability. Balance bikes are a replacement for tricycles and training wheels as they are designed to be used during the ages that a child would typically ride a tricycle or use training wheels.
You will know when the child has learn to balance as they will confidently lift both feet off the ground while they whizz along. Your child will have more control over their bike and will learn to slow down and stop properly right from the start. Before you know it they will be coasting around and it won’t be too long before they’re ready to move up to a first pedal bike.
Advantages of balance bike
Balance bikes involve not only physical activity and entertainment, but also education of even the youngest children. Balance bikes give children independence as they are able to just drive around without the aid of bothersome stabilizers, feeling awkward, and unsteady. They are lightweight and simple, yet focus on the fundamental skill development of balancing on two wheels. Balance isn’t the only useful thing your child will learn from one of these bikes. The bikes are great helpers when it comes to introducing basic traffic rules, using caution, and developing situational awareness. Read More