While winter seems to be sticking around a little bit longer than we’d like it to, we are ready to hit the trails for biking with my kids. Sometimes we bike around the neighborhood parks with a pit stop at the playgrounds, but we usually prefer to bike for longer distances without having to go through city traffic on our favorite trail, North Branch Trail. We ride the complete 18 miles from Botanic Garden until the city at least once every year. We take short breaks, go out on short hikes and just cruise through the beautiful woods.
These longer rides require additional bike gear to avoid any aches, pains, and complaints. In order to have an enjoyable bike ride with your kids whether it be road cycling or mountain biking, you need 5 basics:
- snacks, and
The bike accessories we use, ensure to have all five of these.
Gel bicycle seat cushion cover
Our first obvious choice of accessory is gel bicycle seat cushion cover. Considering we spend at least 2 hours on the bike, kids have these gel cushions on their seats. The first time we went out for a long ride, everyone was in pain when we got back home. I immediately purchased these gel cushions and they’ve served the kids well for the last 2 years. They fit on any sized seat and can be tightened so that it doiesn’t shift.
I only other hand need a little bit more than a plain gel cushion. I have wide hips and require larger support than regular narrow bike seats. This cruiser saddle was a perfect switch from my regular seat. It has a larger surface area yet doesn’t bother when pedaling. It doesn’t hurt my sitz bones like a regular bike seat does. I never have pelvic pain after a long ride.
Bicycle bag with see-through touchscreen mobile case
I purchased these bicycle bag with see-through touch screen mobile case for all of us. Even though its most prominent feature is the touchscreen mobile case, it’s not just a mobile case. It has a quite spacious storage. We pack our wallets, lock chains and keys, wet wipes or tissues, a small water bottle and other odds and ends kids would like to bring along. I love the see-through plastic touchscreen. I usually turn on my “Map my run” app to track our ride. I can check the map, monitor our distance and mile. If I get a call that I think is urgent, I pick it up on speakerphone. You need to tightly wrap the velcros so that it doesn’t shift.
Wireless speedometer and odometer
I use “map my run” app to track our rides but my kids also need to know their speeds and distances themselves. We have these wireless speedometer and odometers attached to their bikes. It’s really easy to attach the wireless sensor and the magnet on the bike. Kids can track the time, their distance and speed in their own terms.
Water bottle holder
Since our bike rides are getting longer, having enough water to keep hydrated is essential. There isn’t any stores along the way to stop by. It’s not really easy to attach any water bottle holder on to every bike either. Bikes these days have fancy designs with weird frames. I got these twist and sip water bottle holder for all 3 of us. I didn’t screw them on the body of our bikes. Tying them with zip ties tightly on the frame worked perfectly. They firmly carry our big water bottles and it’s really easy to grab the bottles to drink while riding our bikes.
Bonus: Reflective bike stickers and neon spoke lamps
These last two accessories are both for safety as well as decoration. Even though we try to complete our rides during daytime, we have reflective bicycle stickers and neon bicycle spoke lamps to helps us be visible. If you want to go fancy, these spoke lights with changing patterns is impressive.
Finally, we never go out biking without out essential biking accessory: Helmets
Also, see my earlier post about this bike trainer harness to teach your kids riding a two-wheel bike without breaking your back.
Who else loves biking with their kids? Do you have favorite trails you ride?