We fathers, have a duty of teaching our children about the dangers on the road, even as we teach them how to cycle. Cycling is one of the best ways to keep fit, move about at relatively high speeds, and still avoid destruction of the environment. Also, you get to ensure that your child learns that his actions have an impact on the environment.
However, for children to travel back and forth school safely nowadays is pretty much a problem. There are more vehicles on the road now, than there were, say, a decade ago. That in itself means that the competition for roads has gone higher.
Cyclists now face more dangers while on the road, than ever before. Teaching your child to recognize these dangers, will help him understand why he needs to practice safe cycling.
Yesterday I ran onto a fairly informative resource I’d like to share with fellow cyclists and parents.
I find it really well designed and info it gives easy to understand. I even gave it to my kids to read and tried explaining that it’s not just they who are taking part in traffic, but their worrying parents at home too. Please share to your loved ones as well.
Some probably more known resources:
Danger from falling
When your son is riding his bicycles on an uneven surface, which is what he will be using many of the time to avoid traffic, the danger of falling is very high. Slippery roads also contribute to the problem. The slipperiness may be because of bad weather. Excessive speeding while cycling may also make him lose his balance and he will eventually fall.
Your son needs to realize that having an extensive cycling experience does not mean that he is exempt from falls.
You should therefore ensure that he learns how important it is to wear protective gear. His helmet will protect his head should he happen to fall on his head. Kneecaps and hand gloves may also come in handy in helping to prevent excessive injuries.
Dangers from vehicles
The vehicles on the road pose a great danger for your son. They are certainly a cause for worry for most fathers.
Your son should therefore learn how to read the traffic signs and follow them. Not doing so may end up causing an accident and being the cyclist, he will lose. He should also wear visible clothing especially in the late hours. This enables the other road users to see him and avoid hitting him.
Most countries have designated cyclist lanes. Have you taught your son to respect the role of these lanes? It will be much safer for him to use them and avoid cycling on busy roads where accidents are more likely to occur.
Your son should also learn that over speeding would not get him where he is going faster all the time. If he loses control, and hits a car, he is going to be in a lot of trouble. Extreme riding tricks are also better left to an official riding track. You want your son to remain healthy all the way into adulthood!
Dangers posed by criminal elements
Teach your son to pay attention to his environment. Some criminal elements abide everywhere. These people are the stuff of nightmares for every concerned father.
Ensure that your son, like mine, learns that he should avoid strangers and follow his gut. Your children should be suspicious of anyone who tries to run them off the road or follow them. Unless they have to, they should also avoid isolated cycling lanes, especially when they are younger.
As a father, you need to learn about safe cycling tips and pass them onto your children. It is how you keep them safe as they cycle.