Parenting responsibilities can sometimes be a lot to deal with. And this also affects maintaining a healthy routine to make time for other activities that you enjoy, such as bike riding, running, etc. However, parents who like cycling or bike riding have one less thing to worry about now. Bike trailers and bike seats are two of the most common means to keep your children with you every time you go on a ride.
These carriers not only keep your little children comfortable but also ensure their safety while enjoying a bicycle ride. In addition to that, these bike carriers also allow you to keep a watchful eye on your children.
There are bike seats that have two different types, rear-mounted bike seats, and front-mounted bike seats. And then there are bike trailers that are attached to the rear of the bicycle.
Let’s Discuss the Features of These Carries and Which is Safer; Bike Trailer, or Bike Seat?
There Are Two Main Types of Bike Seats:
- Rear-mounted bike seats
- Front-mounted bike seats
Rear-Mounted Bike Seats:
Rear-mounted bike seats are the most common type of bike seats. In addition to that, they are suitable for children aged nine months to six years. In rear-mounted bike seats, you have three designs to choose from, which are available in several sizes and shapes. Additionally, some models of the bike seats offer superior comfort by providing excellent back, side, and sometimes front support as well.
However, there is a universal drawback of all rear-mounted bike seats, and that is how the additional weight affects your bike’s handling. It can make the bike feel too heavy and then too hard to keep it under control. This one downside of rear-mounted bike seats can risk the safety of you as well as your kid.
Front-Mounted Bike Seats:
Front-mounted bike seats serve as a great carrier when you want to bond with your little one on a bike ride. They encourage closeness between you and your child and enable you to experience new worlds in front of you. In addition to that, front-mounted bike seats also come in various designs, such as with either a cantilever off the seat tube or the front steerer tube, a direct top tube mount, straddled bar mount, or a combination of these seats. However, most of these designs don’t fit well on traditional road bikes.
Furthermore, front-mounted seats allow your child to have a clear view of the road ahead and enjoy the scenery. However, a front-mounted bike seat means that your child is in the full face of the wind, which can be dangerous. You can prevent this by using a visor with the front-mounted seat.
Additionally, one common disadvantage of using bike seats, whether front-mounted or rear-mounted, is that getting on and off the bike gets complicated. Furthermore, a downside of front-mounted bike seats is that the passenger will have to squeeze in to provide adequate space for you to maneuver the bike handles easily.
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Safety Features to Consider:
Here are a few safety features to consider before you buy a bike seat for your little one:
The height of the child bike seat ensures that the bike seat doesn’t get in the way of the rider. Especially, for front-mounted bike seats, the height should be low enough so that it doesn’t block the view of the bike rider.
Foot guards in a child bike seat keep the feet of the little passenger protected. A dedicated space with safety straps allows the children to strap in their feet in foot guards to protect them from injury.
Make sure that the bike seat has extra padding because it makes the bike seat more comfortable. Additionally, it also protects the child from injury by coming in contact with the frame of the bike seat.
Bike trailers are a safe option compared to bike seats, and they have become an increasingly popular choice. If you have multiple children, extra luggage, or you’re just looking for a safer alternative to a bike seat, then a bike trailer is what you need. Furthermore, bike trailers come with multiple safety features, as well as extra space to store some luggage, such as a lunch box, or some shopping bags. Bike trailers come in various sizes, and you can attach them with a pivot bracket thread on to the skewer near the rear wheel dropout of your bicycle. This way, the bike trailer moves behind the bike like a lorry trailer.
Additionally, almost all bikes are compatible with bike trailers, and you can easily attach one to your road bike. However, make sure that your bike trailer is lightweight so that your legs don’t have to make too much effort in towing it.
Furthermore, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, bike trailers are a lot safer than bike seats because of their safety features. In addition to that, some models of bike trailers can be converted into strollers, and some have ski options too. On the other hand, bike seats are suitable only for children who can sit unaided.
However, the downside of bike trailers is that they are much more expensive than bike seats. Additionally, the passenger is seated at a distance from you, which can be a safety risk for some parents.
Safety Features to Consider:
There are some safety features that you need to consider before purchasing a bike trailer for your little passenger:
A wide wheelbase is essential because it keeps the bike trailer balanced. It also prevents the bike trailer from tipping over when you turn. It also protects the bike from rolling over in case of an accident. However, the wheelbase shouldn’t be too broad that it makes it harder to park the bike in smaller parking areas.
Almost all bike trailers come with a five-point harness that you strap your baby in for protection. A five-point harness keeps your child from losing balance or falling in case your bike hits a road bump.
A roll bar is another vital safety feature that you should look for in a bike trailer. It protects the bike trailer from collapsing inwards if it rolls over in case of an accident. Additionally, a roll bar provides essential durability to a bike trailer from all sides. It also ensures the safety of the bike trailer as well as the passenger.
In conclusion, it’s all a matter of user preference. By considering the safety features of bike trailers and bike seats, you can decide which carrier meets your safety requirements.
Compare The Best Child Bike Trailers
In the market for a bike trailer? Check out this guide comparing the features of some of the best ones in our opinion.
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