Bicycling can bridge generations and bring family members together. Here are five ways to make your family cycling trips enjoyable:
1. Find bike paths in your area. Call your town or county parks department or visit TraillLink.com, a Web site that lists hundreds of bike trails throughout the United States and categorizes them by region, surface, and distance.
2. Make sure your family is comfortably dressed and prepared for the elements. In warm weather, for instance, wear lightweight fabrics that wick away moisture and sweat; in cold weather, dress in layers. Also, have everyone stock a backpack to take along on the ride.
3. Don't forget your gear. Take water bottles, sunglasses, sunscreen, hats, bike locks, a tire pump, a pressure gauge, a small tool kit, sandwiches, healthy snacks, and a disposable camera. Be sure that kids aren't overloaded with heavy items that could affect their balance.
4. Make frequent stops during your ride. Take breaks -- especially on hot, humid days -- for drinks, snacks, and picture taking.
5. Chronicle your family's excursion with photographs. Taking pictures is fun for the kids and a great way to preserve pleasant memories. Make sure to let everyone snap a couple of shots, capturing everything from scenic landscapes to family portraits. After developing the film, place the photographs in a special album, and write captions beneath each picture. Your family will never tire of leafing through (and adding to) this book of biking memories.
Additional reporting by Bob Cooper
The information on this Web site is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses without consulting your pediatrician or family doctor. Please consult a doctor with any questions or concerns you might have regarding your or your child's health.