The easiest way to carry your child on a bike is by using a bike seat. But finding the right one that is safe and reliable enough might be a challenge. We have compiled several tips that might help you choose the right bike seat for your children, considering the kind of bike you have, safety features, etc.
Tip Number 1: Know The Different Types of Bike Seats
Before choosing your child’s bike seat, you must first know the different types of kid’s bike seats and their respective advantages and disadvantages.
There are three (3) types of bike seats commonly found in the market: front-mounted, center-mounted, and rear-mounted.
- The front-mounted bike seat is situated on the front handlebars of the bike;
- The center-mounted bike seat is located right in front of the rider and is mounted on the crossbar of the bike;
- The rear-mounted bike seat is located behind the rider.
Tip Number 2: Bike Seat That Fits Well With Your Type of Bike
Most bikes are compatible with bike seats, meaning it is upon your preference where you want your child to be placed on your bike. Below are different type of bikes and the type of bike seat that I recommend:
A front-mounted bike seat is perfect for hybrid bikes. This bike seat position enables you to communicate with your child and gives them a lovely view of the road while riding.
Just like the hybrid bikes, front seats are ideal for the cruiser bikes, as they allow ample space between the rider and the handlebar.
Mountain Bikes go through many challenging terrains. Therefore, choosing the best bike seat for your mountain bikes requires careful consideration to avoid accidents. I recommend mounting the bike seat in the front or center instead of having it in the rear. This position eliminates the need to check on your child’s safety regularly while on the road.
Tip Number 3: Safety First!
Above anything else, safety should be the priority in buying your child’s bike seat. You must check if the bike seat meets the safety regulations and make sure that it has passed several tests conducted by recognized testing authorities.
Do not buy bike seats for children with a suspicious certification or approval. More so if the manufacturer does not provide any safety certification. Avoid buying bike seats that are self-tested. We’ve noticed that many Chinese-manufactured products are often self-tested.
Do not jeopardize your child’s safety. Sometimes branded and more expensive bike seats are ideal to buy than those cheaper and risky ones. Remember that you want what’s best for your child!
Tip Number 4: Choose A Bike Seat That Has Easy to Find Spare Parts
Undeniably, there are times that bike seats get to be replaced due to age and everyday use. Replacing its parts such as straps and other components can be economically-wise rather than replacing the whole thing. So make sure that the bike seat you choose has readily available spare parts in your local store or online.
Tip Number 5: Plan Ahead
If you are planning for a fun ride, choose a front or center-mounted bike seat. This allows you and your child to communicate with each other and enjoy the view without any distractions. Front and center-mounted bike seats are best for many activities such as off-road riding, getting your child to school, and even exercising with your child on your bike.
FAQs: Frequently Asked Questions on Choosing A Child Bike Seat
Got more questions? We gathered additional information that might help answer them. Read below.
What is the recommended age for my child to use a bike seat?
Although each child is different, the recommended age for a child to use a bike seat is 1-4 years old. The primary factor to consider is the neck strength of your child. Do not put them on a bike seat if you feel that they cannot withstand the road bumps that would affect their neck. You will know when is the right time to have your child ride on a bike seat. Having them wait for a little longer when they’re ready is better than risking an injury.
What are some safety measures we should consider when buying a child bike seat?
Below are a handful of safety measures you should consider when purchasing a chile bike seat.
- In choosing a child bike seat, make sure that the body straps hold your child securely in place while the bike is moving and do not come loose easily.
- Make sure that there are footrests. Footrests keep your child’s feet away from the moving parts of the bike.
- Enough support and protection on the rear and the sides of the child bike seat are necessary.
- Check if your child’s bike seat creates an uncomfortable feeling for your child. Your child bike seat should be appropriately cushioned to avoid your child hitting a hard part on the bike seat when on a bumpy road. Also, a long fun ride can make your child fall asleep while riding; that is why getting a headrest is a great option. Children aged under two years old usually fall asleep due to the movement of the bike.
Is there a maximum weight and height requirement for a front-mounted child bike seat?
There is a maximum weight limit set by each country for a front-mounted child bike seat. In the United States, the weight limit is 40 lbs, while in Europe, it is 15 kgs. The child’s weight in a child bike seat does not necessarily affect the bike’s performance, but the height becomes a problem for children over 4 years old.
Help your kid learn and appreciate biking here.
Still in doubt with a bike seat? Try a child bike trailer instead!