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Cycling: need to get my mojo back... help please

(35 Posts)
asicsgirl Tue 19-Aug-08 14:55:54

when ds1 was little he sat in seat on back of dp's bike. now 3, he loves being on back of tandem.

now ds2 is here and expectation is i will take him on back of my bike. i used to (road) cycle quite a bit before dcs arrived, tho' not as metal-head as dp. but haven't been out on bike since i was pg with ds1. we used to go on great cycling hols and have fantasy of doing this as a family.

but... i feel terrified of taking ds2 on bike sad we live in v hilly area which never used to be a prob but there is little in the way of flattish quiet roads for me to practise with him and i'm worried my bike handling skills aren't up to it sad most accidents i used to have just involved me and the kerb, or just fouling up gear change and falling off, etc blush

ds2 only 3mths atm so i have time to prepare... if i knew how to! anyone got any tips?

Takver Tue 19-Aug-08 19:47:36

What about a trailer - less wobbly and more protection around your DS - plus I guess if you're planning on hols then you'll need somewhere for luggage.
Or indeed both DSs in the trailer with DH pulling? Then you can concentrate on getting back into the swing of cycling without having to worry about your ds at all, and once ds2 is bigger maybe add a childseat.

asicsgirl Wed 20-Aug-08 10:32:30

yes trailer is a good idea. do you use one? can you tell if the dcs are ok, crying, cold, whatever?

muddleduck Wed 20-Aug-08 11:54:38

Sorry to hijack but what sort of tandem are you using for ds1? My ds1 is also 3 and I'm not sure what is best at that age. Does it combine with the seat that you have for ds2?
I also used to take ds1 alot when it was just him and have not been on my bike since ds2 was born.


asicsgirl Wed 20-Aug-08 12:27:18

hi muddleduck! it's a normal tandem but dp has fitted kiddy cranks to it and a special toddler seat (from somewhere is the states) that ds1 is strapped into. cutest thing you ever saw. don't think there is room for the baby seat too but there will be when ds1 is big enough to sit on a normal child's saddle.

muddleduck Wed 20-Aug-08 12:31:44


I really want to be able to take both boys out (3 and 1) and can't get my head around what the best option is. There were some threads on this a few weeks back but they just confused me even more blush. Maybe I just need to go to my local bike shop and be pathetic. Or maybe I'm just being unrealistic that I can manage both of them at once. hmm

Lazycow Wed 20-Aug-08 12:42:23

Well a trailer would work for both children and as others have said would be useful for luggeage on holidays where your dh takes one of them on the seat.

asicsgirl Wed 20-Aug-08 12:47:34

i have seen people with older child in front (between your legs iyswim) and younger child in seat on back...? i can ask dp about this when he comes in, he will have lots of ideas. recently i asked him what he thinks about to try and get to sleep and he said 'i think about different ways of arranging bicycle components' hmm

muddleduck Wed 20-Aug-08 12:57:31

Thanks. smile

I feel bad at hijacking so returning to your original question, maybe you should go out on your own a couple of times with some sandbags or similar where your lo will go to get used to the different weight distribution and then see how often you crash grin.

snickersnack Wed 20-Aug-08 13:05:57

I asked yesterday about the one in front, one behind option - consensus was it might be a bit heavy. I've seen people doing it in Italy, and they were ok, but it was in Lucca where there's little or no traffic.

Have you contacted [[ Cycle Training UK}}. They do short sessions to help you improve or regain your confidence. I think it's pretty cheap - mine was free as my local authority paid for it. I had cycled at university but was terrified at the idea of dd on the back of my bike. A really really really nice man turned up at my house, fitted the seat to my rack for dd, strapped her in, showed me how to get on, and off we went. After an hour of cycling around together and him giving me tips on what to do, we cycled back home round the South Circular, and I've never looked back since. Definitely worth giving them a call to see what they offer in your area.

snickersnack Wed 20-Aug-08 13:06:24

Or indeed Cycle Training UK blush

asicsgirl Wed 20-Aug-08 13:42:27

snickersnack the cycle training sounds like a brilliant idea. i did something v similar when i had to go back to driving after several years off. i will get in touch with them when ds2 is the right size! in the meantime muddleduck your idea is good too! i def need to get my general cycling confidence back too so this might be a good way of getting potatoes back from the shops in the meantime grin

snickersnack Wed 20-Aug-08 13:46:21

Hope they can help. Could you let me know what your dp says about one on front and one on the back? I really want to be able to cycle dd to preschool when she starts in Sept but it's going to involve some kind of multi-child transportation solution. Am very tempted by a bakfiet - never come across them before - but think I'd have to work hard to justify the cost!

asicsgirl Wed 20-Aug-08 13:53:58

just googled bakfiet - how cool - the dutch really do have an answer for everything cycling don't they.

or go the whole hog and get one of these!

i will ask dp tonight. might be tomorrow before i get a chance to post his wise words tho' grin

muddleduck Wed 20-Aug-08 13:56:43

Do either of you know what age/weight you can use the trailers to? Similarly what age can we start with a tag-along? I can't find clear guidance anywhere and want to make sure I get something that will last a fair while.

asicsgirl Wed 20-Aug-08 13:58:25

don't know but i can ask dp this too... grin

Lazycow Wed 20-Aug-08 14:01:07

The trailers seems to last until around 5 years old I think though if your child was very big they might be a bit squashed. Ds went in a trailer last month (he's 3.8yrs old) and there was tons of space for him.

Once they are older (say 5/6) they are usually OK on a tag along. Shortly after that they can probably ride their own bike I'd say.

cheesesarnie Wed 20-Aug-08 14:02:14

i got a new bike a few months ago and was scared as hadnt riden for about 14 years.i got on-fell off before got to end of our path,wobbled along road pooing myself with lots of cars behind me,didnt go far until i turned around and went homegrin.ive got a trailer which i practised with in the garden!ive only taken it out once though-ds was easy to hear-i kept shouting you ok.hes laid back saying yeah!but i kept going half on pavement with trailer(ds didnt say he was wonkygrin)so need to practise!our road is very busy but all the others behind us are quiet country lanes so maybe i should push it till i get there to practise and get confidence going.

asicsgirl Wed 20-Aug-08 14:05:48

lol cheesesarnie at you shouting to ds. when ds1 was little in the child seat dp used to say he could feel little fingers scrabbling on his bum... prob looking for snacks in dp's back pockets knowing ds1, lol

no garden or quiet lanes to practise in here unfortunately. well there are quiet lanes but they are all about 1 in 4, lol

asicsgirl Wed 20-Aug-08 18:47:46

have added pic of tandem to my profile grin

snickersnack Wed 20-Aug-08 20:46:39

Ah yes, both of mine have a tendency to ping my knicker elastic when they're on the back of my bike. Highly amusing.

cheesesarnie Wed 20-Aug-08 23:00:43

love tandem

asicsgirl Thu 21-Aug-08 18:16:38

snickersnack dp says one on front one on back is quite difficult to manage cos of weight distribution. he also says it's hard to get impartial advice on different carrying options as everyone has their own prefs/ prejudices!

he also mentioned tricycle conversion kits - i used to see a woman in york riding a trike with 2 kids on back between the wheels and this might do the trick if you wanted to convert a solo into a trike! you can also use them to convert the front (so you have two wheels in front, one at back) it seems. alternative to bakfiets??

muddleduck/ cheesesarnie - dp got lots of tandem advice - and advice on family biking generally - from precision tandems - he bought the kit from them to put ds1 on the back and speaks really highly of their service!

Takver Fri 22-Aug-08 17:46:30

Sorry to come back in, have been off at beach lots grin.
Muddleduck most children seem ok on a tagalong from about 4.5 yrs, some earlier if they have long legs. Trailer works up to about 6yrs max from friends DCs, though I think most children seem to be on tagalong or own bike before then.
Tagalongs are fab IME as your DC gets to do lots of the pushing, I used to bribe with snacks for extra hard pedalling up hills when I had two on a double tagalong . . .
I have used tagalong that attaches to seatpost and one that attaches to the pannier rack, I much prefer the pannier rack one as it feels much more stable, in fact it was recommended by friend who works in bike shop for this reason. Mine is an Islabikes one, but there are various on the market.

frogmama Fri 22-Aug-08 20:00:36

Hi there, Ive taken my DD out on my bike (1st time Id ridden since a child) from about 6mths, I have a BOBIKE MINI which fits on the front of the bike and My daughter sits between my arms which is lovely and feels so much safer, I also have a wind/fly screen that goes with it for extra protection. Its just grand!

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