As a grandparent, there’s nothing greater than spending time with your grandkids.
There’s something just so amazing about watching those youngsters grow up, while you get to share precious time, stories and experiences with them.
That said, many folks worry about running out of fun activities for the young ones to do, about having the kids show up at the house and suddenly – they’re bored.
Fortunately, there’s an amazing activity that’s affordable and fun for the whole family – bicycling! Let’s take a look at some of the great advantages of biking with your grandkids, as well as some pointers to make your rides even more enjoyable.
Maybe it’s a park by your house, or perhaps it’s some stunning scenery a bit outside of the city. Wherever your favorite slice of greenery is, there’s no better way to explore it than with a bicycle.
You can think of bikes as the great equalizer. No longer can a hyperactive grandkid zoom way ahead of you (we all know how nerve-wracking that is.) Similarly, any slower members of the family don’t have to worry about keeping up, as bikes make going the distance fun and easy.
Best of all, when on a bicycle, you can see so much more of the places you love. When walking, you can at best only see a few miles of scenery before someone gets tired. But on a bike, the possibilities are almost endless.
Even a novice biker can easily do 5 miles in an hour, while older kids can do double that. And if you’re worried about getting tired yourself, consider getting an electric bike. That way, not only will you be able to cruise effort-free for 40 miles, you can race to the front of the pack and show those youngsters who’s boss!
Looking for a great ride near you? Check out this handy list of amazing and accessible bike trails for every region of the United States.
Bikes are great for nature, but they can be even better for making the most of your neighborhood. Think about it this way – if you’re trying to take the kids out for a walk, you can only go maybe half a mile before someone gets a little tired and cranky.
Of course, you could put them in the car, but where’s the fun in that? Instead of getting to explore the town, the kids are just stuck sitting in the back, staring at the headrests and wondering “are we there yet?”
With a bicycle, the journey is as important as the destination. Suddenly they’re getting to know the town you love, seeing things you would miss as you zoom by in a car. Like the old saying goes, this truly lets you stop and smell the roses. And when you stop and get to your destination – be it a movie theater, museum or just the market – parking is easy.
Instead of slowly circling for a spot, dealing with parallel parking and then watching the whole troop of kids scamper around the parking lot, you can simply lock the bikes up in front of your destination and waltz right in.
Here’s an especially fun example that combines the best of both nature and town life: a bicycle picnic! Picnics are a great way to spend the afternoon: you get the fun of the park, the whole family together, and everyone gets to chow down on their favorite foods.
While driving to a picnic isn’t exactly an adventure, walking to your site can be pretty difficult if you’ve got a lot of gear with you: picnic baskets, drinks, food, blankets, maybe even some entertainment options. Luckily, with a bike, you can haul all those things super easily. Just strap on some panniers (bike bags), load them up with your goodies, and you’re ready to go.
For those with an even grander picnic in mind, you can also add a little bicycle trailer, so you can easily haul 50 or so pounds of gear. And with this setup, you and your family can just ride right up to your chosen picnic sight, and then the kids will have fun setting up and unloading all the supplies!
Now that you’ve got a few fun ideas for biking with the grandkids, here are a few other things to keep in mind. First off, always remember to bring helmets! Some kids might protest that they look “dorky,” but this is seriously one area where you need to be firm, and not spoil them; bike boo-boos are no laughing matter.
Make sure the helmets fit snuggly around the kiddos’ heads, and then be sure to put one on yourself. You’ve got to set a good example, after all!
Most kids will happily pedal their own junior bikes. But if one of your grandkids is still a baby or toddler, there’s another great option: the bike trailer. Just as some are good for hauling gear around, others are equally adept at toting your extra precious cargo in a safe and secure manner. Or consider getting a trailer model that’s great for both, and then your options are doubled.
Even if you’re going on a short ride, bring more water than you think is necessary, as well as some snacks. The last thing you want are some crying grandkids who think they’re just too hungry to get back to the trailhead.
And, if your grandsons or daughters are the particularly active sort, and you’re worried about keeping up with them, consider investing in an electric bike. Not only will it help you comfortably ride as long as you want, it’ll keep you healthy and active for many years to come.
Keep all these in mind, and you and the grandkids are sure to make some amazing memories together! Got any questions about biking with your loved ones? Sound off in the comments.
This article was brought to you by EVELO Electric Bicycles, the maker of amazing bikes for people of all ages and abilities.