In order to ensure your child can ride safely, be sure to equip them with the necessary accessories to protect them in what will be a new environment for them.
A helmet, elbow and knee pads, lights, a safety flag … a number of items are available to help your child get started with cycling safely!
1. Body Protection Gear for Children
In the case of children, body protection is even more important since they have less balance and are less experienced than you on a bike. It’s best to purchase a child’s helmet, as even when not required by law, it is strongly recommended to protect the child’s head should they fall.
You can also equip your child with elbow and knee pads if you wish to protect these sensitive areas or if they need the confidence provided by these additional protective items.
2. Improve Your Child's Visibility
There are many accessories available to improve the visibility, and therefore the safety, of your child. You can mount bike lights and reflectors on their bike.
Your child must also be able to make themselves heard in case of danger or to alert pedestrians to their presence. For this purpose, we recommend mounting a bell on their bike.
Lastly, in order to increase their confidence in the presence of vehicles, equip their bike with a safety flag. A safety flag is a small reflective flag that attaches to the rear of the bike and folds out to the side, forcing vehicles to pass by at a further distance from your child.
3. Instilling the Right Habits in Your Child
It’s not enough to buy your child a helmet. You must also teach them to wear it each time they ride their kids bike. To help them make this a habit, start by wearing one yourself. The best sermon is a sample!
Also take the time to show them how to adjust it in order to avoid wearing a helmet that is too loose or too tight, which renders it ineffective.
Teach your child how to correctly signal their turns using arm signals. Help them understand that their arm is like the turn signals on a car and that it can be very helpful to extend one’s arm to alert others on the road that you will be turning.
Lastly, your child should learn how to stop by the side of the road safely. If they have a flat tyre, or must wait for you at a given point along your ride, your child should know how to place themselves out of harm’s way. Show them how to stop a bit off the road so as to park their bike without risk of danger.
4. Things to Check Your Child's Bike Before a Ride
A brief check of the bike before setting out for a ride can save you much bigger problems once you’re already on your way.
Check a few simple items on your child’s bike. Make sure that the seat and handlebar are adjusted to the child’s height, that the tyres are inflated properly, and that the brakes and lights work properly.
Also, make sure to regularly check that any accessories are properly attached and that there is no play or unusual noises or rattling when riding. In case of uncertainty, don’t hesitate to seek advice from an expert!
Bike safety is never to be taken lightly, and especially as it applies to young cyclists who are sometimes intimidated by the presence of vehicles. Take the time to properly prepare your child for their first rides by installing safety equipment and teaching them the basic principles of safe cycling.