Open post
Yuba Flip Flop Kids Cargo Bike

DIY Bike Lessons for Kids: Easily teach your child to ride their bike!

Do it Yourself: Bike Lessons for your kid How we taught our kid to ride a bike We don’t have a car and bike a lot, so our child has been exposed to bicycles practically since they were born. We weren’t sure what this would mean for how quickly our child would take to riding a bike of their own.  And we were of course hoping to try to maintain their interest in bikes so they’d want to learn. Balance bikes vs bikes with training wheels I learned to ride on a bike with training wheels, as did most people my age.  I have nothing against training wheels, but thought it’d make more sense for our child to first learn balance and handling.  This can be done while scooting and gliding on a balance bike.  I had noticed that some […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Open post
Bicycle hand signal image via Wikipedia

Bike Laws in California (and other traffic laws)

Bike laws and traffic laws for people on bikes, in cars, and people who walk in the state of California I just finished a League of American Cyclists training course, and was really impressed with the depth of information covered in the course.  One important aspect of the training is the law as it relates to how people share the roadways.  This reflects traffic principles, bike laws, and infrastructure in their current state.  I’m hoping there can continue to be improvements that will make it easier for people to walk and bike to get to where they need to go without the fear of being hit by a car.  You shouldn’t be required to drive a 5000 pound vehicle to pick up a loaf of bread and 12 eggs from a grocery store. I’m still learning, and am definitely open […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Open post
Clothink Top Tube Bag for a Child's Bike

Top tube bags for childrens’ bikes: A quick review

Why use a top tube bag for a child’s bike? As parents, we want our children to enjoy their cycling experience.  We had been searching for a way to enhance that experience for our child by finding a way for them to be able to carry their stuff on their own bike.  I looked around for a couple of bags and had found an old bag that we had used before.  It was beneficial because it allowed our child to carry their own snacks, band-aids, and other things deemed to them to be essential.  It also freed us from having to carry the various sticks, leaves, rocks, toys, and other small things that children often collect and carry. The top tube bag location is great.  It allows a child to easily access their stuff, even while riding. The top tube […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Open post
Bike Flag Light Pole, made in Oakland

Riding our light up bike pole lights (aka Bike Beam) in Oakland and Berkeley

Family bike riding around Oakland and Berkeley Our child is old enough to pedal themselves around to school, the library, and to sports practice.  Sometimes it’s hard, but usually we have a good time getting to where we need to go.  We get some exercise, take in our surroundings, wave to neighbors, give names to cats and dogs, and appreciate random sidewalk finds. And we can get around in an environmentally-friendly way. We ride around with a set of bike pole lights that I have been developing for a while.  The bike flag lights make us pretty easy to spot. If you see us, wave and say hello! I made our bike pole lights (aka the “Bike Beam” light) to keep my child visible When we first started riding around on neighborhood streets, I realized that my child was hard […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Open post

Bike safety flags for being extra visible while riding a bicycle, even in the daytime

Bike safety flags can help keep bicycle riders visible The greatest risk for someone riding a bike on roads with automobile traffic is being hit by a car.  I strongly support infrastructure improvements that physically protect someone riding a bike.  Dedicated bike paths and protected bike lanes can help a lot with this. I don’t like putting the burden of safety on the more vulnerable in general.  At the same time, if there’s a low-effort way to improve safety, it’s probably a good thing to do.  According to the NHTSA, the 2nd leading factor in bicyclist deaths is “Not visible (dark clothing, no lighting, etc)”.  Vehicles are getting bigger, which causes more line of sight problems for other users of the road. Adding a flag is an easy and low-cost way of improving visibility, but it does have a few […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Open post
Google map of Berkeley with Slow Streets and Bike Lanes

Bike navigation for cyclists – what’s important

The topic of bike navigation for cyclists came up recently, especially with the release of some new features for Google Maps Lite: With lite navigation, cyclists can quickly see important details about their route without needing to keep their screen on or enter turn-by-turn navigation. At a glance, you can track your trip progress, see your ETA update in real-time, and even know the elevation of your route so you can keep your focus where it needs to be — on the road. Why is dedicated bike navigation important? And what features do cycles need that are not available in turn-by-turn car map apps? There are a few main factors that affect navigation for people who are traveling by bike.  The safety of the road and protection from automotive traffic is probably the primary factor. It’s critical for a bike […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Open post
Kids and Parents biking on Slow Streets in Oakland

Neighborhood Bike Parades That Help Kids Learn to Ride Together

The kids bike parade is a way to let kids play, ride bikes together and learn to ride safely.  Children and adults make new friends and build community by bike. How did the bike parade start? Earlier on in the pandemic, we learned that COVID spread mostly through poorly-ventilated air. We tried to think of ways to still foster social interactions between children with a lower risk profile.  Our family and a lot of others have gone with their kids biking to spend time outdoors.   We started by turning a birthday party into a evening bike ride.  Kids had fun biking together and being able to see each other not on a computer screen! Parents got a chance to ride with their kids and others. Neighbors were treated to a lively mini parade.   A few parents loved the […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Open post
Riding with the kid in the rain

Making it fun: How we bike with our kid in the rain

Biking in the Rain with a Kid Our family doesn’t own a car, so when it rains we often have to still ride our bikes.  This sometimes can present challenges when riding with a kid.  The rain has returned, at least temporarily, in the Bay Area.  So we got out our waterproof outerwear for the rides to school and back.  Here is how we bike in the rain. What we do (for the adults) I’ve been bike commuting to school/work for nearly 20 years now, and my bikes and gear have evolved considerably.  Here is my current setup for biking in the rain: On the Bike Fenders: I have the type that mount to eyelets on the bike and cover a lot of the wheel.  Some of the temporary solutions work ok, but it’s nice having more wheel coverage.  I […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Open post
Protected bike lanes under construction on Milvia St in Berkeley, CA

Protected bike lanes on Milvia in Berkeley

  Protected lanes in Berkeley! I noticed a lot of new construction activity on Milvia Street in Berkeley a few months ago, after visiting Sports Basement and Missing Link in search of a new bike rack.  I was pretty excited to see that it looked like protected lanes were going to be installed.  Recently, coming back from University, it was nice to see the construction taking place around Addison, Center, Center, and along Berkeley High. Why protected lanes? I’ve asked a lot of friends what would make it easier for them to ride their bike more.  Most have answered that they’re scared of automobile traffic.  While painted bike lanes can be helpful, there’s not much preventing a distracted driver from drifting or veering into a bike lane and harming a person on a bike.  Protected bike lanes are great, because […]

Continue readingMore Tag
Scroll to top