Whether it’s your child’s first bike or the 10th one, you should always make sure that the bike in question is sturdy and safe enough for your child to ride comfortably. It should also be able to withstand any possible minor accidents they might face.
Knowing If A Bike Is Safe: Does It Meet The Criteria?
To be considered safe, the bike should have a few characteristics. These include:
1) The size must be right for your child. This does not mean right for the child’s age. It means right specifically for your child. When your child sits on the bike, their feet should just be touching the ground, and the handle bars should be easy for them to reach without stretching their arms too much. Their knees should not knock against the handle bars when their feet are on the pedals. As you can see, it depends more on the build of the child than their age.
2) The brakes and chain guard should be in proper working order. This is of course a must-have for any bike whether an adult’s or a child’s. Kid’s bikes usually employ coaster brakes as they do not have the hand strength to depress hand brakes. Coaster brakes are foot brakes that are engaged by moving the pedals backwards. If you have older children, you may see hand brakes on their bikes. Be sure to test all brakes on a bike before letting your child use it. The chain guard is the piece that covers the chains of the bike, and it should not knock against the chains themselves when the bike is being cycled.
3) The wheels and frame should be sturdy. Wheel rims made of metal alloy or aluminum are recommended for kids’ bikes, and those from steel and chrome are not. This is because the latter two surfaces make brake pads more slippery when wet, posing a possible braking failure. The wheels should spin thoroughly and freely when you test them, and should not knock against or touch other parts of the bike. As for the frame, it should be strong and it should be aligned with both the front and back wheels.
Just by checking for the simple things above, you can ensure your child’s bike is safe for their use and prevent any serious accidents or injury. Of course, be sure to get a good helmet and even knee pads for your kids to further make cycling a safe activity for them!