Top tips for safe bike riding

child-558798_640Despite the cooler weather most toddlers and small children still enjoy heading outside for a bike or scooter ride!

Bikes are great for fitness and fun but what can you do to ensure your children are safe when riding?

Explore your suburb and find a bike path your whole family can ride on – according to the Bicycling WA website, people of all ages are now allowed to ride on footpaths (April 2016).

Children under 10 should cycle with responsible adults.

Don’t be fooled by the BIG bike

Ever been tempted to purchase a bike your child can grow into?

Just imagine trying to run in shoes too big for you. Pretty dangerous isn’t it?

The same applies to bicycles. It’s important to choose a bike that is the right size for your child.

Looking after your bike

No matter what age your kids are, they’re not too young to start learning how to look after their bike.

Teach them to go through a bicycle safety checklist each time they go for a ride. Not only will this demonstrate good practice, they will be able to flag issues with their bike before it becomes a problem.

Hopefully this will transfer to when they get older and start to drive a car!

Helmuts hug your head

Wearing a helmet when riding a bike is a legal requirement in WA. You should ensure that your child’s helmet fits correctly and meets the Australian Standards Mark (AS 2063.2 or AS/NZS 2063).

Helmet should be light (less than 350g is best) and of a bright colour to increase visibility when out on the road. Avoid second hand helmets and replace the helmet if it has been subjected to a severe blow or is showing signs of wear and tear.

Here are some great song to sing to your little ones to help then understand why helmuts are important:

Polly put your helmet on (To the tune of ‘Polly put the Kettle on’)

Polly put your helmet on,

Polly put your helmet on,

Polly put your helmet on,

Let’s go for a ride

My helmet (to the tune of ‘Pop goes the weasel’)

Round and round the path I go,

I always wear my helmet,

No matter where I ride my bike,

On goes my helmet.

More information:

SDERA’s Smarts Steps program has a great range of road safety education information and resources for families and anyone transporting young children. The resources include ideas for parents and carers to help young children develop skills, behaviours and attitudes to become safer while travelling as passengers, pedestrians and users of bikes and wheeled toys.

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