Socks, shoes, pants, jackets. Getting children dressed can seem like a never-ending list. And now a bike helmet, too? But if they’re going out riding, it’s an absolute necessity.
Every year in the United States, roughly 800 cyclists are killed, while nearly half-a-million cyclists take a trip to the emergency room. Two-thirds of these deaths and one-third of these injuries are face- and head-related.
Here are some ways to help encourage your child to wear a bicycle helmet:
Start them when they’re young
Even when they’re just starting out on a tricycle, have your child wear a helmet. This way, from the very beginning, it’s something they naturally do before getting on wheels. And make this a non-negotiable. Either they ride with a helmet, or there’s no riding at all!
Make picking out a helmet fun
Make it an event! Let them pick the stores they’d like to visit to find the helmet or shop for it online. Allow them to choose whichever their favorite helmet would be–one with sparkles or dinosaurs or maybe it even glows in the dark! If they want to glam up their helmet even more, purchase some fun stickers to place on the helmet.
Make sure the helmet you are purchasing fits properly and is approved by the Consumer Product Safety Committee–look for the sticker inside the helmet.
Lead by example
Don’t instruct your children to do one thing, and then don’t do it yourself. Make sure they see you putting on your helmet anytime you go for a bike ride. No exceptions.
Words of affirmation
Praise a child whenever they put on their helmet. Tell them how smart they are to be putting on the helmet, and how cool they look with it on! When you’re out and about, make it a game to see how many other cyclists with helmets you can count. Being safe can be fun, too.
If you are someone you love has been involved in a bicycle accident, we are always here to help with legal counsel.