Ajda was again joined by Janja from Pedosana - the centre for infant and child development. Their topic this time were outdoor activities with children. They discussed the accessories for outdoor activities, when an activity is appropriate and what to look out for.
Bike seats for children can be front or rear-mounted. A front-mounted seat is suitable for children up to 15 kg, while a rear-mounted seat can hold much more, up to 25 kg. From a parent's point of view, it is more difficult to steer the bike if the seat is at the front (especially behind the handlebars), as it interferes with the knees and therefore with propelling the bike. A front seat is also more dangerous in the event of a fall.
But of course it depends on the family's decision and what is more suitable for the route. An advantage of a front seat is that the child can see the surroundings better and may find it more interesting. But for longer journeys, the rear seat is definitely preferable, as it can change the angle of the seat - which comes in very handy if the child falls asleep on the way.
When to put my child on a bike?
When it is appropriate to put your child in a bicycle seat depends on your child's development. Sitting up unassisted, or at least getting on all fours, is a sign that the spine is strong enough. Then make sure that the seat is correctly positioned - that the legs are supported and the child can rest their arms, it is also mandatory that the seat is securely fastened and the helmet is worn.
Balance bike, scooter
A balance bike is a great tool for giving your child the experience they need to ride a bike on their own. It gives the child a sense of balance and body coordination. Two-wheeled (rather than three-wheeled) balance bikes are recommended. If the child masters the balance bike, they will master cycling very quickly, without the need for an intermediate bike with auxiliary wheels.
The right time for a balance bike is when the child is walking well or 6 months from the first steps. It is important that the child already responds to your call to stop, but also that the child shows interest in the balance bike. Children learn motor skills on their own, so give them time and don't force them.
It is good if the seat of the balance bike is adjustable in height. When the child sits down, they should reach the floor with their whole feet, keeping their knees slightly bent. The handlebar should be lower than the chest so that the child can lean forward more easily.
The same goes for a scooter, but the child should be encouraged to use both legs to ride, as otherwise one half of the body develops much more than the other, which can lead to injury and pain. The height of the handlebars is important, and should be at chest height, so that the arms are in extension of the shoulder ring.
For hiking, a backpack is recommended from the moment the child is sitting up independently, before that a carrier. With hiking chairs it is also very important that the child has adequate leg support and that there are enough stops while walking.
Parents are sometimes too goal-oriented. First and foremost, it is important to listen to the child and accept it if the child cannot manage a long distance. It is very important to respond to the child's needs and not to force. Also, the pressure on parents can be great when they compare their child with others. It is good for a child to have the opportunity to gain different experiences, but it is far from necessary to be the best or to progress particularly quickly in something.
Malmo the deer is very nice to the touch and the little ones love how he shares his sweetness on all sides of his antlers!