Family Cycling Blog:

More and more parents and kids are discovering the recreational, transportation and health benefits of cycling together.

Family Cycling is fun.

And the fun can start young. We discuss the family adventures, the gear that families use, and how to use it safely.

Turn kids from passive, parent-powered passengers into active cyclists themselves as they grow.

Submit Your Family Cycling Photos

Cycling together as a family can be more fun and meaningful than the most epic tour. And the photos you take make irresistible blog fodder -- and we mean that in a really good way.

We love to collect photos of the products that make bikes part of the family. Send us anything from that photo of your child first learning to ride, to that photo of the whole family out on a cycling. Submit your family cycling photos here and we'll let you know when we publish them.



The Latest From Bike Child Seats

Mark and Archie Head to Work

Mark and son Archie have an 8 mile commute by bike to work.  “He loves the top bar seat as he can constantly ask me questions along the way!”  Love the stylish helmet and boots Archie!

Jack’s Ortileb Panniers for Sculptures and Fun in the Park

As we continue on with our Summer Ortlieb, Tubus, Racktime sale for another week, we will be posting user contributed photos that show various uses of these products.  Here is a good example of a set of Ortleib Back Rollers  Classics being put to some good use.  The bike child seat looks to be a Bobike front child seat, a model which we plan on carrying soon at BikeKidShop.com.

First picture (2nd on post) of just the bike, there is a 35 lb figurative steel sculpture in the panniers. You can see the hand sticking out.
Second pic it is full of snacks and diapers!


Josie’s Kona Ute Schoolbus

Some great photos of happy kids on bike to school commute with a Kona Ute.

“Rideshare home from school. The new village school in Sausalito”

Richard’s Xtracycle Peapod – Stroller Ready

Richard sent us these photos of his son on an Xtracycle with PeaPod and a stroller attached on the PeaPod. It sounds like he is a real fan after a few months. He included this video of his adventures with the Xtracycle.

Speaking of the PeaPod, we are kicking off our Fall Inventory Reductions. We happen to have some overstock off the PeaPod at the moment. Click through to our PeaPod page for details.

Dear BikeShopHub People:
Earlier this year, when Xtracycle kits were no longer available in the shops here in Australia, my partner and I, after searching the Internet, found you! We ordered a Free Rad kit, a PeaPod, and a 2nd Snapdeck, and the rest has been history. We are now a 2 Xtracycle family, and I ride mine every day, for any reason!
Thanks, Richard Monfries (PS: I wear your BikeShopHub.com T-shirt when I’m out and about on the bike too)

'The Blobinnator' - that's what my 5 year old son Max has called my Xtracycle.

Oscar Likes the Strider Balance Bike

Last year, we saw that Strider Balance Bikes were a big hit with the kids at the Hullabalo. So we decide to bring out 2 of them this year. Our friend Brent of Fratelli Pizza has been eying one for his son Oscar. Oscar is definitely sold. I’m not sure when his birthday is, but seems like a good idea for Dad.

Tandem Wheelie and Trailer Train

I love wheelies. I’m not so good at them anymore, but I’m a sucker for them.

Last night, I had a dream that I was doing a wheelie on an adult tricycle. Please leave your psychoanalytical theories in the comments.

Brown Cycles of Grand Junction Colorado makes KidzTandems, which are tandem bikes with the stoker position in front, and the captain position in the back. I’ve seen these before, but never got the point. Then I saw this:

KidzTandem Wheelie

Hallelujah! | Photo: Brown Cycles

I get it. I totally get it now.

Pedalgogy: Balance Bikes and Training Wheels

A couple of years ago I was at a local bike shop buying a bike for my future stepdaughter who, at the time, was an eight-year-old girl who did not yet know how to ride on two wheels.

We asked about training wheels, and was told by the owner of the shop that it was not possible to put training wheels on a bike with a rear derailleur. Simply not possible, he claimed, because derailleur gets in the way of the struts, or the brackets, or the other thingy. Anyway, I just accepted it as authoritative truth. Then I set my mind on teaching the kid to ride on two wheels from the get go.

In the past week I’ve learned two things.

First, it may have been for the best that we didn’t use training wheels.

Strider Childs Balance Bike

Strider Child's Balance Bike

In fact, I now believe that training wheels are at best a crutch for people who should have learned to ride at a younger age. At worst they are an impediment that keeps young kids from transitioning to full competence on bikes.

Fighting words? Call it the zeal of a convert. Last week I was introduced to balance bikes. I took a close look at a Strider Child Balance Bike, I talked to a sales rep, and I watched a couple of YouTube videos.

That qualifies me as an Internet pseudo-expert. So pity the next person who gives me half a reason to go off half-cocked about how best to teach a child to ride.

I was pretty badass on a tricycle, but I was seven or eight years old when I finally learned to ride a bike. I now have to wonder whether my tricycle and training wheels stunted my progress toward two wheels.

The other thing I learned this week is that, contrary to what was said by Mr. Bike Shop Owner Who Shall Remain Nameless, you absolutely can put training wheels on a bike with a derailleur. I did it.

A derailleur living in haromony with Sunlite Adjustable Training Wheels

A derailleur living in harmony with Sunlite Adjustable Training Wheels

I can see how it could be potentially problematic with the struts, but top training wheel engineers in advanced research labs have solved that problem.

We have two kinds of training wheels here, and both worked on the child’s bike that I used for testing. The Sunlite Adjustable Bike Training Wheels had the most clearance from the derailleur. The Wald Bike Training Wheels worked as well, but might have had difficulty working on another bike with a different derailleur or a different bottom dropout design.

So, fine. If you must. Put training wheels on your kid’s bike, if only to prove a certain bike shop owner wrong. Just don’t be surprised when the kid who learned on a Strider leaves your kid in the dust.


For the testament of another convert, check out Learning to Ride: Balance Bikes by John Coe.
Also take a look at this recent photo of Eden on her Skuut Balance Bike over at PedalPoweredFamily.com

Xtracycle and More

Geoff had been prepping a bike with the intention of adding an Xtracycle FreeRadical to it, Biketrailershop.com had a Xtracycle sale during the spring of 2009, this sale was just the motivation that Geoff needed to make the move an order himself a FreeRadical. His intended use of the Xtracycle was like many, to carry stuff, but like many before him Geoff soon realized that he had just hit the tip of the ice burg.

Tom’s Kid Karrier

Check out Toms kid karrier a.k.a. a customized Xtracycle. You don’t necessarily need to have a pull behind kid trailer to haul the little ones around. Tom used his fully out fitted Xtracycle with Magic Carpet and all and added 3/4″ thick walled copper tubing and wrapped PVC.

This is a great Xtracycle conversion, using low cost materials that can be found at the local hardware store. Many extras can be added to the Xtracycle to customize it for almost any need. Tom is using this for three kids now, in a few years, two, then maybe just one will fit on there, but for now it works great for three, and I love the roll bar look. Thanks for the photos Tom and great job!