Monday, September 16, 2013

The Seat that Saved my Summer (as well as spring and most likely fall)

My daughter is getting older now and able to bike really well.  When I bought her her first BIG  bike from the bike store...not a Toys R Us bike this time (not that I didn't love the Toys R Us one that she had before), I bought myself a bike too.  That summer I ended up not using it too much.  But this spring I was sure that it would be my time.  There are just so many positives to biking.  However, I now have one problem: how to transport my son.  He has an adorable tricycle he received from his grandparents for his birthday, but it just can't quite keep up.

Now, I am not a professional bicyclist by any means. In fact when I bought my bicycle, just after buying my lovey her first real big girl bike from Bike Line. I went back and said "I just need to be able to keep up with her so give me your cheapest bicycle." There were no used bikes so I really did just buy the cheapest there.  Then I didn't even use it, save once or twice for the first year or so I had it.  So needless to say, I was rather lost when it came to toddler-toting bike devices.

Ahhhhhhhh, Amazon.  How I adore thee for thwarting so many of my crises.  My search began with trailers that you attach to the back of your bike.  Super cute and great idea I thought.  I've seen people with those.  I know you have too, but reading some reviews I started to get worried that it would flip or something. Scary! Plus these roads around us don't really have that much room for biking.  I would be terrified a car would not see the neon yellow/green and orange cart in time to swerve or anything!  I think I would bike looking backwards more than forwards! 

Then was the search of bike seats.  I was thinking the ones that sit behind you, but my mom freaked me out about those years ago.  She has always said that they aren't safe.  I have no idea why (and thinking about it they are probably perfectly safe), but it has become ingrained.  So I was hesitant even as I entered it into the search bar.  Then I came across and subsequently ordered the WeeRide LTD Kangaroo Child Bike Seat.

I'm loving it and loving riding my bike. We ride to pick my son up from school. When my daughter rides the bus to her school, I bike my son to school.  I've gone on a couple 8 mile rides through the hilly park with him aboard. And this past weekend, we biked somewhere between 35 and 40 miles, stopping for lunch in the middle. So I think I finally have enough information to make an informed review (beyond YAY!)

**By the way, I have not been asked to provide a review.  I am doing  it completely of my own volition because I am just so excited.**

Of course it has it's pros and cons as does anything, but for me there were far more pros than cons.  If you are a professional or hardcore cyclist, you may whole heartedly disagree. And I get that.


Easy installation.
It took me almost no time to put the seat on.  It is a matter of installing the bar in two parts, connecting the parts and putting the seat on.  I even did it with my son hopping around me out of excitement and my daughter biking circles in the driveway urging me to hurry. Super simple.

A feeling of safety.
 I love having my son in front of me.  We both feel much safer this way.  It is very mama bear-baby bear.  And he feels like he is biking in a big hug.

The ability to bike with my daughter to my son's school, pick him up, and bike back.
We love doing this now when she doesn't have too much homework, weather permitting.  (And it's mostly a very slight downhill 3/4 of the way home.)

It adds extra weight and resistance to a bike ride, adding some strength training to your cardio.

The weight limit is 40 pounds.  Unfortunately, I did not come across this seat until my son was already 35 pounds (thank goodness, he didn't have some kind of crazy growth spurt over the summer), but all that extra weight really feels good.  It makes uphills more difficult but in a wonderful work-the-extra-dessert-off kind of way.

It looks so cute!
I mean seriously....look at us:

 I get a lot of smiles and "awwws" whenever we go out.  People turn around in their bikes as they pass us and when people are biking the opposite direction you can see their faces visibly soften as they smile at the adorable-ness that is this bike seat.


It adds extra weight and resistance to a bike ride, adding some strength training to your cardio.

Yup, this was one of the pros as well.   But it could be a con depending on how you look at it.

It changes the way you peddle.  

In order to accommodate the seat in between your leg, you must peddle with your legs and knees at a rather awkward angle.  When my daughter ends up riding behind me, she giggles that I look like a frog.  (Hey maybe that's a bit of a pro - it provides entertainment for loved ones.)

You can't really rise out of your seat like you would otherwise.

Because the seat and your child's helmeted head is directly in front of you, it is hard to get the same leverage that you may get from standing up to propel yourself uphill harder.  (Although I did see this interesting article in which it explains that some people may argue that sitting while riding uphill is faster, although there are times standing is preferable.)  Anyways, I did find a way to compensate by pushing the peddles more forward from a position further back.

So I think, all in all, this seat is really great for me.  I bike for entertainment, to get a bit of exercise while spending QT time with my kids. It is so much fun and I'm always looking for ways to promote a healthy lifestyle while having so much fun with my kids!

Disclosure: This post contains an affiliate link.

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