Cycling to School

Cycling to School

 

If you live in an urban area and you have children (older than 2), chances are you’ll be faced with doing the school run on a regular basis. There are many ways to get your offspring to school but walking or riding have to be the most convenient, with cycling being the quicker option. Even a 10 mile+ round trip stands a good chance of being quicker on a bike than it would in a car or on public transport. If you are lucky enough to live within a few miles of your child’s school then cycling has to be just about the best option there is.

 

With this in mind we thought a brief post about some of the ways in which you and your child can get to school on two wheels might be useful.

 

If you already own a suitable bike and your child isn’t old enough to ride safely to school on their own bike then a either mounting a seat onto your bike or using a towed trailer or a ‘half-wheeler’.

 

Child seat mounted to rack.

Want to cycle to School? A child seat mounted on a pannier rack is a simple solution

 

The rack mounted child seat is the cheapest and easiest way, assuming you already have a rack and a bike strong enough to carry the weight. It does raise the centre of gravity of your bike a fair amount so you do have to be wary of this. Also, if you’re child starts moving about a lot it can be a bit alarming!

 

Cycling Oxford

Two up. Cross bar mounted forward facing child seat allows for one adult to ride with two children, as long as one is still quite little.  (Photo credit: tejvanphotos)

 

A toddler trailer buggy solves the stability issue and removes any concern about bike strength. They can also be towed by any bike (although we wouldn’t recommend towing a trailer behind your £2k carbon road bike) so aren’t restricted to those with racks. Ordinarily the trailers have two wheels and a forward facing seat with a light weight canopy similar to those found on prams and push chairs. They do increase the width and length of your bike and are therefore less suited for those needing to ride on the road alongside motor vehicle traffic.

 

 

 

Bicycle Trailer Recall

Towed Bicycle Trailer  (Photo credit: USCPSC)

 

The Half Wheeler is definitely the better option if you have a child old enough to sit safely (and hopefully peddle) on a normal saddle without any security. Generally we’d only recommend this option if your child is already riding a proper bike safely. The benefit is that you don’t have to ride at their speed or stop when they do (all quite important for the school run). Although bike length is increased, width is not so you don’t encounter problems with bollards or gates etc.

 

Half Wheeler "is a kids bike that hooks u...

Half Wheeler “is a kids bike that hooks up to an adult bike to help teach kids to balance” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

If none of the above options is right for you or they’re just too “normal” then take a look at these two ideas. Before you ask, no, we don’t stock either of these bikes.

 

High street-Oxford Adult and two children cycl...

High street-Oxford Adult and two children cycling with cargo load with trailer (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

A Burley Piccolo behind a triple tandem

A Burley Piccolo behind a triple tandem (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

If you’d like advice on the various “child friendly” bike transport options for the school run (or any other family activity) come and have a chat with us in the Cycle Centre. If you’d like an assesment on what would work best for your existing bike, then just bring it in.

 

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