I Go To School By Bike

     

Tips for Biking, Bonding, & Safety this School Year

Are you interested in promoting an active, healthy lifestyle in your children where they can learn independence while becoming safe and responsible young people? Biking khổng lồ school can be a great way khổng lồ start & it is never too early lớn get your kids riding bikes!

If you are new lớn commuting by bike or you vày not know many other children who bike to school, the idea can be a little scary. Liv is here to lớn help. We have enlisted the guidance of Liv Ambassador Moms Jessica Downing và Nadine Davis for a little insight on how to lớn get started, bicycle safety and the benefits of biking with your kids to school.

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Bike lớn School- Nadine & Reese

Getting Started: More Kids on Bikes!

More kids on bikes means more FAMILIES on bikes và more fun bicycle bonding adventures! Why not start out by making every day an adventure by biking to lớn school?

Bike lớn School- Nadine & Reese Quote

To begin with, discover the best route lớn your child’s school on your own. How long is the ride? Are sidewalks, greenways, bike paths or xe đạp lanes available on the route? What is the traffic like during the time of day your child goes to và returns from school? Are there steep hills on the route to lớn school?

After finding out what kind of ride you are working with, evaluate your child’s ability. How long has your child been riding? How much control vì they have over their bike? What is their current fitness level?

What about equipment? Is your child’s bike in good working order? Does their xe đạp still fit if they have been growing? Making sure your child has the right size and type of bike for the ride khổng lồ school could make the difference between a pleasant experience và a difficult one.

Our two Liv Ambassador Moms ride to and from school with their daughters, age four & eight. They both agree that the younger your child is when they begin riding to school, the easier it is to keep up this heathy habit. Jessica says daughter Lucy (4 years old) does not know any other way to lớn get lớn school, “Before she started riding a pedal xe đạp this summer, she would ride her balance bike. Before she did that, we took her to preschool và daycare on a bike seat or the Chariot, so she"s really never known any other way.”

Nadine rides with daughter Reece (8 years old) less than a mile lớn school via xe đạp path and recently upgraded her lớn a bike with 24-inch wheels that helps her roll a little faster and makes the ride more enjoyable. In the mountain town near Vail, Colorado where Nadine & Reese live, they are disappointed that more classmates vị not ride their bikes khổng lồ school. “Reese has noticed that she is one of only 3 children who ride bikes lớn school. This is different that her last school where a lot of kids rode bikes. At 8 years old, she wants to bởi something to get more kids on bikes. Gotta love it!”

Bicycle Safety

Bicycle safety is the most important part of helping your child ride lớn school.

First of all, make sure they have appropriate gear:

Helmet that fits! Your child’s helmet should fit màn chơi on the head, tight enough that it doesn’t move around và straps pulled snug under the chin.Closed toe shoes. Flip-flops, untied shoe laces or strappy sandals are not appropriate for riding because they could get caught in the chain or other parts of the bike.Bright clothes/ reflectors. Wearing bright clothes or having reflectors on your bike will make the child more visible khổng lồ other riders và vehicles on the road.No loose clothing. If your child has baggy pants or loose articles of clothing (like a jacket tied around the waist) it could get caught in the chain. Instruct your child to roll up their right pant leg (the gears are on the right side of the bike) và pack unneeded jackets into a backpack or basket.Lights.

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If your child goes to lớn school early or returns late (if in an after-school program), make sure they have bike lights with working batteries.Bike Lock. Some schools now have “bike lockers” for safe storage of bikes at school. If your child’s school has bike racks, make sure your child has a sturdy bike lock và he/she knows how to properly lock the bike to the rack.

Teaching your child how to lớn inspect their xe đạp prior to lớn riding it & the rules of the road is going to lớn make them a more independent, knowledgeable and safe rider.

“ABC” Safety Check: Before every ride, check your tires for proper AIR pressure, squeeze the BRAKES to make sure your brakes are working properly and kiểm tra the CHAIN lớn make sure it shifts into every gear. As you perform routine maintenance on your bike, tell your child what you are doing và why. They will pick up on it and will feel super confident knowing how to lớn work on their bikes.Yield to lớn Pedestrians: If riding on the sidewalk, bike path or greenway, yield to pedestrians and communicate. When riding up behind a pedestrian say, “Rider back.” If passing say, “On your left.” When riding with your child practice communicating with pedestrians.Ride in a Straight Line: Nadine says her and Reese talk about riding in a “predicable line” on the way to school và being aware of other riders và vehicles.Ride on the Right: If riding on the road, you & your children should ride on the right hand side & follow the same rules of the road that cars would. Obey traffic signs and signals, look back & signal before turning.Take caution at intersections, crosswalks & driveways: Using sidewalks, bike paths & greenways are the safest ways lớn get your children lớn school, especially if they are young và less coordinated on the bike. Make sure to take extra caution at intersections, as motorists don’t always expect to lớn see bikes (moving at higher speeds). Tell your kids to lớn make eye liên hệ with drivers lớn make sure they are seen and communicate “all-clear” when it is safe lớn cross.

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So, when is it safe lớn let my child ride to lớn school by themselves? This all depends on you, your child, the length of the ride to school and the amount of traffic on the way khổng lồ school. Some areas organize group rides to school that allow your child lớn ride with other kids and moms. Generally, one parent will be the leader và another will sweep, picking up kids along the way to school. This is a great way lớn get your child used lớn riding in groups, following the wheel of the rider in front and making predictable line choice. As the children get older, more confident and aware of safety, the parents duck out & the kids will size a “bike bus” where they ride together as a group và look out for one another.

Benefits of Biking to lớn School

1. Bonding over Bikes

Biking to School- Jess & Lucy

Liv Ambassador Moms, Nadine & Jessica treasure the time they spend with their little ones every morning and afternoon. Being able giới thiệu something that is so important in each of their lives with their daughters is priceless. Plus, as Nadine notes, “It is a fun way to lớn start the day & so much better than doing drop-off in the car!” Jessica shares drop-off duties with her husband, but is grateful on days where they can all make the trip as a family. As all parents know, there is no exact science to building a better relationship with your child. Jessica says, “When I just asked Lucy if she likes to ride with me khổng lồ school, she said, ‘No, just with Dad,” so, apparently we need lớn work on relationship building!”

2. Increased Health & Fitness

Quote- Jess và Lucy

Kids who walk or ride their bike to school benefit from that extra activity before a day of sitting at their desks. Not only have they used up some of their energy, but they are on their way khổng lồ leading a more fit and active lifestyle that will translate to all aspects of their lives. Nadine says her daughter’s cycling addiction has gone above and beyond just riding khổng lồ school. “Reese loves riding bikes and has attended the local Vail Mountain xe đạp Camp for some great experience riding on dirt. We have also ridden RAGBRAI in Iowa for the last two years together on a tandem. The RAGBRAI experience has been amazing & I can tell Reese is proud of riding big miles & being a part of this epic ride.”

3. Independence và Love of Bikes!

Biking to School- Good Habits

Children who learn how to ride their bikes to lớn school have more confidence in the ability lớn take care of themselves. By giving children a little adventure on their bikes every day, parents are cultivating a love of bikes that will lead to good habits và an enriched future!

Share your photos & stories of commuting with your children by bike by tagging us on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter!