Teaching your child how to ride a bike for the first time can be a rewarding experience for both of you. However, teaching the how-to of bike riding isn’t enough. Teaching your child about bike safety is also key. One of the most important components of bicycle safety is finding the right-sized bicycle helmet. Here are some tips on how to fit a bicycle helmet for a child.
Choose the Right Size
There is a variety of different helmet sizes, and as your child grows, it’s likely that that he or she will need progressively larger helmets. When starting out, experiment with a number of helmet sizes. Place the helmet on your child’s head, and make sure that it doesn’t easily rock from side to side. The helmet should be snug, but not so snug that it’s uncomfortable.
Another way to check the size is to view the position of where the helmet sits on the head. The front edge of the helmet should be approximately one to two fingers' width above the eyebrows. If it’s not, it may be too big or too small.
Adjust the Helmet’s Straps
The next step is adjusting the straps of the helmet so that the helmet is secure. The straps should form a “V” shape on each side of the head, with the ear being inside of the “V.” With the chinstrap buckled, you should be able to fit one or two fingers comfortably under it, but no more. Additionally, the helmet should not be able to rock back and forth at all.
If the straps don’t have a locking device on them, the side buckle may have a tendency to slide, which can be a major problem. Always check your child’s helmet straps for property fit before each and every ride.
Make Sure Your Child Has Everything He or She Needs for Safe Riding
A helmet – while perhaps the most important – is not the only part of riding safely. Make sure you also teach your child about these important things.
- How to make hand signals
- Why rear bike lights are a must
- All about Iowa’s bike laws
It’s also important that you always set a good example for safe riding, and always wear your helmet and follow cycling laws, too. Doing so can help both you and your child avoid an accident.
Refer to our bicycle/pedestrian blog to learn more about cycling safety in Iowa. And if you’re in an accident, don’t hesitate to contact Walker, Billingsley & Bair at (888) 435-9886.