Prevention is always better than cure. In a hobby or sport as strenuous and dangerous as mountain biking, children should always be accompanied by adults even if they already have prior experience or training. The situation may slightly be different from practising on a neighbourhood road as compared to a trail or terrain on a distant hill or valley.
The security and safety of children should be given the first priority in enjoying this type of hobby; thus, we take this opportunity to give you some friendly reminders on how to keep kids safe while mountain biking:
Bike frame size should be according to the child’s height
This is information that every parent should know. Allowing kids to ride a bike not suited or fit for them entails a lot of risks or danger. To determine this correctly, allow your child to dismount the saddle up front and check whether the crotch area doesn’t touch the upper, vertical frame next to the handlebars. You will know that it isn’t the right frame if the crotch area makes contact with the steel frame.
Prior adjustment of the saddle height for kids to reach the pedals
It is always a practical way for kids to use their upper body weight to make contact with the ground during emergency brakes. Following the suggestion mentioned above will not only give children a comfortable ride while pedalling on a trail but also prevent them from falling or crashing directly to the ground in case of accidents. Parents should make sure that once children dismount the saddle going forward, they’ll be able to use both feet to stop or reduce speed when there are sudden obstructions.
Loosen the front brakes and tighten the rear brakes
Conscious parents should know that once children press very hard on the front brakes, the bike will turn upside down in a stumbling position. This is because the rider’s weight will have so much impact moving forward, making the bicycle heavier forward. It cannot be avoided that if children lose control, they’ll normally want to suddenly stop the bicycle. Loosening, it will have little impact forward, thereby preventing future accidents. It is best to use the rear brakes, instead.
Always wear a helmet including elbow and knee protective pads
The head is a very sensitive part of the body, especially with growing children. Wearing a helmet not only protects the skull but also keeps overhead objects to bump into the temple. Likewise, wearing body pads prevent scratches and or bruises from minor accidents while on a trek.
Ride in tandem with kids
One parent and one child policy should be taken into consideration during a mountain biking ride. Instruct kids not to separate and go-ahead from the group.