ABC's of Bicycle Safety with Mike and Aiden
Aiden is here to bring you the ABC's of Bicycle Safety!
Safety starts with you! Before you head out on your bicycle you should have some basic skills and safety knowledge to keep you (and others around you) safe. Before you jump on your bike, go through an ABC Quick Check:
A is for "Air" - Check the air pressure in your tires, spin the wheels and make sure the tires are not worn out.
B is for "Brakes" - Check to make sure coaster brakes will stop the bike by spinning the back wheel and applying the brake. If the bike has hand brakes check to see that the levers don’t hit the handlebars when squeezed. Lift one tire up at a time and spin it; squeeze the levers to see if the tire stops. The brake pads should be clean, straight and contact the rims properly.
C is for "Chain" - Spin the pedals and cranks to see if the chain drives the rear wheel. The chain should look like metal not rust or black gunk. If the bike has gears check to make sure the gear levers and derailleurs (gear-changing mechanism) work to shift the chain between gears.
Quick is for your quick releases - make sure all your quick releases are closed tight.
Check is for, well, checkin' on everything else - Give your whole bike a once over, looking for weird dents, mystery rust spots, missing pieces or loose bits.
Some other safety guidelines to teach kids early on:
- Always wear a helmet and make sure it's fitted properly (1-2 fingers between the strap and the chin, 1-2 fingers MAX between the eyebrows and the brim).
- Know and obey all traffic laws, signs and signals.
- Stay to the right. Ride in the right portion of the rightmost lane or trail in the direction you are traveling.
- Look and signal before you move. Always scan behind you before changing lanes or making turns.
- A continuous arm signal is required prior to a turn or lane change and while stopped waiting to turn. It's tricky to let go of the handle-bar the first few times so make sure they get some practice in first!