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Child Safety: Bicycles and Tricycles

Table of Contents


Topic Overview

Many parents who ride bikes like to include their young children. Riding tricycles is also a fun outdoor activity for preschoolers age 3 and older. To avoid injury from these activities, consider the following safety measures to protect your children.

Biking and using bicycle carriers and trailers

A baby or young child in a carrier that is attached to an adult's bike is at risk for serious injury, even when you use all the latest safety equipment. Uneven road surfaces, cars and other vehicles, or unanticipated problems can endanger your child. It is best to wait to bike with children until they have the balance and coordination to ride along with you on their own bicycles. Usually, this is around ages 4 to 7.1 Do not allow children to ride in the street until they are 10 years old, are skilled riders, and consistently observe the basic rules of the road.2

In certain circumstances, biking with a child trailer has fewer risks. If you are really set on biking with a baby or young child, the following suggestions can help you minimize the risk of injury:

Tricycles

Tricycles and similar three-wheeled toys provide exercise and entertainment for many children. Keep this activity fun and safe by following these tips:


References

Citations

  1. American Academy of Pediatrics (2011). Biking. Available online: http://www.healthychildren.org/English/healthy-living/sports/Pages/Biking.aspx.
  2. American Academy of Pediatrics (2009). Keeping your child safe. In SP Shevlov et al., eds., Caring for Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to Age 5, 5th ed., pp. 457–506. New York: Bantam.

Other Works Consulted


Credits for Child Safety: Bicycles and Tricycles

Current as of: September 20, 2021

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
John Pope MD - Pediatrics
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine


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