You may love to bike and enjoy the outdoors. However, when you have an infant or young child who cannot independently ride a bike, you certainly won’t get much time to do this. Unless you look into a baby bike trailer! You can hook it up to your bike, and then you and your child can enjoy a trip to the park, down a paved trail or even to a close store.
An advantage is that your infant will like the movement and things to look at. If you don’t feel comfortable not having eye contact with your little one, there are mirrors that can help you see your little one while you bike. The fresh air and movement may lull the little one off to a lovely nap.
How difficult are they to use?
If you like to bike in your area, and love the exercise and fresh air, a bike trailer may be exactly the thing for you. The trailers are lightweight, so easy to pull, and balance quite well due to their desing. You won’t feel a great deal of extra effort is needed physically.
The trailers are designed to be easy to hitch up so you can get up and go quickly. Some people find that there is even room in the trailers for groceries or small amounts of things so you can also haul items home with you. Plus, there is room for a little one’s favorite stuffed animal or blanket. Double trailers are also available so you can carry more than one child at a time, which is helpful for families with more than one child.
Safety with trailers?
The trailers themselves are designed so that if you were to fall from your bike, or it were to tip over, the trailer would not tip over, unless you were at high speeds. The key is that the connections between the bike and trailer are separated by pivots so they can move independently. The trailers aren’t tall, so the passengers are always close to the ground which reduces the distance to fall, were it to tip.
When you think about biking with your child, can think about other options. There are bike seats that go on either the handlebars of your bike, or on the back of your bike. Both greatly change your balance and the way your bike moves. The child passenger is higher up in the air, so there is more distance to fall if the bike should tip.
Also, carefully consider the kind of traffic you intend to travel in. While the trailer may be easy to use and comfortable for you and your child, traffic can always be a hazard. In any situation, traffic should be considered. Avoid heavy traffic areas, heavy traffic times and chaotic areas for bikes. Consider more sedate areas for riding safety.
What ages can use the bike trailer?
According to the recommendations by the trailer manufacturers, your child needs to be able to sit up on their own in order to ride safely in the bike trailer, and most recommend that your child be at least 12 months of age, though by six months most babies can sit up on their own. Many recommendations say that if the trailer is being used like a stroller, and not attached to a bike, a child sitting up on their own is safe, but to wait until a child is a year old before pulling them behind a bike. Helmets are always a wise idea as well.
What To Look When Buying Baby Bike Trailers
When you start researching trailers, you will find that there are many options out there, so you will want to think about what will be the best for your needs. Not only does the size of the child matter, but the type of riding you want to do, the roughness of your road, what you may want to haul as well as the child, and how else the trailer may be used. Some people chose trailers that can also haul a great deal of gear, in order to continue using after the children outgrow it.
- Can it be used as a stroller? Many trailers can be used as strollers when detached from the bike, which adds to the appeal and usefulness.
- Do you need it to become more compact for storage? Can it fold up so it can be put in a car or a smaller space in the garage?
- What size trailer do you need? For one child or two? To carry more items than just a child?
- What kind of support for smaller children?
- How hard is it to get a child in and out of?
- Are there some sort of bumpers to add to the safety?
- How many points are the harnesses for the child? Five point? Generally, five point is what is recommended and reported to be most comfortable for the child.
- If you choose a double trailer, how are the seats arranged? Will the children slide together or is each child held individually?
- What kind of cover does it have? Does it have a screen? Does it also have a clear solid cover to protect the child from wind or rain?
- What kinds of seats and backrests? Can these be removed for cleaning?
- How does it allow for airflow so it doesn’t get too hot or build up condensation?