Spring is here! And that means, you guessed it… bike rides. Now that we’ve added two wee ones to our family, it can be a bit difficult to have a truly relaxing, enjoyable ride. To aid my family and yours in achieving this goal, I’ve outlined a few simple steps that I’ve found helpful:
1. Find a safe place to ride.
Like a paved bike path, or a low traffic road with a wide shoulder. This way you won’t be worried about cars buzzing you or rocks and sticks throwing you and your little ones off balance. Another great option to help you feel comfortable are lights. The Bontrager Flare R can bee seen from over a mile away in daylight, which is very reassuring.
2. Gather your gear.
You’ll want helmets for everyone and perhaps riding gloves as well. Comfortable, weather appropriate clothing is also a must. You may also want to invest in a bike rack for easier transportation.
3. Strap in the kids.
There are many child seating options available for your bike. Choose the option(s) that you and your children feel the most comfortable and happy with. The three main types are a seat that attaches either behind the handlebars or saddle, a seated trailer, or a tow along bike. The seats that attach work best for infants and smaller toddlers, the seated trailers for larger toddlers and small children, and the tow along bikes for children around four years and up. Each option allows your child more freedom of movement and ability to watch their surroundings as they grow.
4. Be prepared.
Water and snacks are a must, especially with smaller children. From fruit bars to baby formula, a quick bite to eat can help keep everyone from getting cranky. And of course, STAY HYDRATED!
A fifth and optional step would be to head to a destination. Luckily, we live near a paved bike path that connects most of the city. We can travel to a park, an ice cream stand, or a river. Looking forward to the destination can keep the kids calm, if needed. Even without the stop, these steps should assist you in relaxing and enjoying a ride with your family… or at least keeping sane while doing so.