Your child– wearing a helmet– can ride in a bike trailer (those little carts with wheels that you pull behind your bicycle) beginning no sooner than 12 months old. “Before you put your child in a bike trailer, she needs to be able to stay up progressively, and she has to have a helmet that fits properly,” says Howard Reinstein, a pediatrician in Encino, California, and representative for the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).
The League of American Bicyclists cautions that a rear-mounted bicycle seat (the kind that attaches to your bicycle right behind your seat) make the bike less stable. When you leave the bicycle, the weight of the provider and your child can cause the bike– and your child– to fall over.
Bike trailers might be more pricey than rear-mounted bike seats, but they’re more secure. They can also be used to carry groceries and other cargo when your child is not with you, and they have a higher resale value, according to the League of American Bicyclists. You can safely pack your child into a trailer by yourself, however to put her in a bike seat safely takes two individuals (one holding the bike, the other holding the child).
When you buy a trailer, the League recommends that you try to find one that has a ball and socket joint where the bike and trailer fulfill– this avoids the trailer from tipping over if the bike does. The trailer should likewise have three- or five-point harness seat belts. Before every ride ensure to strap your child in firmly.
When you pick a helmet for your child, look for a label that states it fulfills Snell, ANSI, or CPSC security requirements. The League of American Bicyclists also recommends that you bring your child into a specialty bike store where a salesperson can help you find a helmet that fits properly. The helmet must fit comfortably, indicating it should not rock backward and forward or side to side. The straps need to be adjustable so that you can tighten them under your child’s chin (never ever leave the helmet straps open or loose). If you can twist or pull the helmet in any direction and it comes off your youngster’s head or the buckle loosens up, the helmet will not work security in an accident.
Make certain your child understands that your policy is “no helmet, no bike ride”– and prove the guideline by following it yourself. Wearing a helmet can safeguard you and your kids from serious injuries.