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Kids trailer: safety & advices for cycling with an accessory
Do you want to go for a ride, a trip or simply commute with your children but they are not old enough to use their own bikes? The kid trailer accessory might be just what you were looking for! While this solution is very practical, it requires some time to adapt. Let’s get into it…
What is a kids trailer and how can it be used on your bicycle?
Definition and uses
A kids trailer is simply another way of defining a bike cart for children’s transportation.
It’s a one or two-wheeled system that you can add to the back (and in some cases the front) of your bike- it can be used to carry different types of loads.
The most common use of this accessory is to transport kids. It is possible to transport up to 4 children, which is about 100 kilos/ 220 Ibs of total charge.
This system can also be used for other purposes such as animal transportation and even professional usage for food or parcels deliveries, tools carriers & more…
Clearly, this setup allows you great flexibility on top of a large charging capacity.
The advantages of this solution
But why choose a bike trailer when complete cargo bikes exist? Well, having a trailer has several advantages:
A cart allows you to transport the loads you want according to your needs. We can even say that, in certain cases, it replaces the trunk of a car!
The cost of a trailer is much lower than a complete cargo bike. In fact, if you already own a bike, all you have to do is buy a trailer!
If you want to transport your children by bike, a trailer is the perfect solution because it is comfortable and safe. Most children’s trailers are equipped with protective metal cabins. These protect your kids from potential dangers or bad weather.
This solution is modular, meaning that you can easily and quickly remove the trailer from your bike if you no longer need it. It will be easier to store it in a small place.
Things to keep in mind when cycling with a trailer on your bike
Length and width
One of the disadvantages of a bicycle accessory is the length, but also the width! Indeed, when you add a trailer to your bike- you logically increase the total length of your bike. The bike becomes more difficult to handle and you’ll lose some dynamism. You will have to be extra careful when turning, as you will have to keep in mind the extra length. Plus, because the add-on sits at the back you’ll have to get used to not seeing the charges.
You’ll also have to get used to the weight. This option will add at least 15 kilos / 33 lbs to your weight. And if you also carry loads (children, groceries etc.), you will feel a big difference. It will slow you down, especially when riding uphill or against the wind!
Also think about the braking distance which will increase with the weight. You will have to plan widely to be sure to break in time.
Safety with children
Even if there is a protective cabin on your kids trailer, you must not forget about safety.
When your little ones are on board, they must wear a helmet (mandatory until 12 years old). Especially because you will not be able to keep an eye on them since they are behind you. We recommend, for example, the Abus child bike helmet for great protection.
Moreover, the bike cart is very close to the ground so it is possible that it doesn’t appear in the field of vision of higher vehicles. It’s therefore advised to install flags on the sides of your cycle, preferably in red or orange for better visibility. We also recommend reflective strips, lights or reflectors to be seen at night.
An original example: AddBike+, a kids trailer placed in front
To avoid having to change your habits too much, there is also a bicycle cart called AddBike+, which does not differ much from a standard cycle.
Indeed, this two-wheeled system is placed on the front of your bike replacing your front wheel. It allows you to carry up to 35kg/ 77 Ibs of load. Moreover, if you add one of the different modules proposed, you will be able to carry your child, your dog or any other load without ever leaving them unsupervised.
The AddBike+ is equipped with a double patented tilting system called Curve-Assist. It allows the wheels to incline sideways, while the base remains parallel to the ground during a turn. It will give you a dynamic and manoeuvrable three-wheeled cargo bike, similar to a classic one. The system can be intimidating for some, but with a little practice you’ll get used to it very quickly!
This solution is barely longer than a standard bike and its width is equal to the handlebars, which makes it easier to ride. You’ll just have to tame the tilting wheel system… But that happens in no time! 💪
In addition, all modules have a secure metal frame that protects your children or your belongings. But also reflective strips that allow you to be seen when it is dark.
You now have all the elements in hand to choose the perfect bike cart for your daily commute 🙂