Pole position: my favourite front bike seats

Hello friends,

I have been a little bit bored “down under” lately, so I have been preparing some e-mails to my future mummy as I reckon it is really important to have some pre-birth talks, so that she already has an idea of who will turn up pretty soon. I already apologised to her for the fact that before coming to earth I may have to cause her some pain.  Nonetheless, I read in magazines about other women having given birth that it was definitely “a hell of a job” but that the moment they saw their baby appear in the world, it was the most precious moment they ever experienced. These honest testimonies have reassured me as well, because, believe me, for me it won’t be easy either. Although this place down under is far from spacious, it has been my home for quite some time now and leaving this place will likely cause me to shed some tears. However, when I will be able to see mummy’s face for the very first time, I will be so happy. I have been dreaming of how she looks like. As I am rather good looking myself, I reckon the apple won’t fall far from the tree.

Although I have been in inside pole position for some time now, I wouldn’t mind changing for outside pole position in the near future. Therefore, I can’t wait for mummy to take me out on a bike ride and show me off to the rest of the world. As the Netherlands is a real bike country, you won’t be surprised that most parents use this popular vehicle as means of transportation for their children, especially in cities, where it is much more practical to use your bike to cover short distances than to go by car. I didn’t realise that in many countries it is not at all common to take your child along in a bike seat.  Moreover, in some countries, it is even considered dangerous.  Thanks to the extensive network of safe cycle routes, it is very common for the Dutch to do so.

Alike the Dutch Formula 1 race car driver Max Verstappen starting off in pole position in a super fancy car, I have been looking for a fancy front bike seat model and I have found some really COOL models that I want to share with you. “Dutch design” or “Scandinavian Design”, do these labels not sound appealing?

As I have to convince mummy to buy one of these fancy models, I have also done some profound investigation as to their technical details.  After all, I shall have to accompany her when buying this seat. Having a man around is always handy, seeing we are more into technical details. Don’t tell her I said that because that might not make me popular …

Now into the technical details:

Children up to three years old usually sit at the front. As soon as your child can sit upright on its own, he or she can sit in a front bike seat. For most children this is between six and nine months, although some people advise not to start before the age of one.  

After having been tucked away in the womb for such a long time, I cannot wait to feel the wind through my hairs. Furthermore, front bike seats are ideal to cycle with your parent because they can show you everything there is to see while talking to you, cycling along, enjoying the scenery together. According to me, the social aspect of this front bike seat is really important. Nowadays, most people always seem to be occupied by their phones, somehow forgetting to pay each other the necessary attention.

I have been overhearing some conversations of parents discussing the pros and cons of bike seats.

Safety, ease of installation and construction are the 3 key elements when choosing a bike seat for your baby or toddler.

Model above: Hamax Observer Grey-White-Black
Model above: Bobike One mini strawberry red

Model above: Thule Yepp Nexxt Maxi ChocolateBrown

  • Construction & ease of installation

You cannot mount every type of bike seat on a bike. Moreover, mummy will have to buy a bike first before we can even go cycling, so I think choosing my bike seat first and then choosing the suitable bike for mummy is the easiest solution.

When your mummy or daddy already has a bike, I suggest you take the bike to your local bicycle shop and try out the best suitable options as to construction and ease of installation.

Keep in mind that with a bike seat in front, the parent has less moving space, which makes getting onto the bike and cycling a bit more difficult. His/her knees can also easily touch the seat when cycling. In addition, steering is somewhat more difficult. The standard indicates that he/she should be able to turn at least 45 degrees with your steering wheel. Try in the store if there is enough space for this.

That is why mums can also opt for a so-called mommy bike. These have an extra wide handlebar providing the extra space. Mommy bikes often have a lock as an extra feature that you can use to secure the front wheel.

  • Safety: checklist for choosing a child bike seat

I translated a handy checklist as mentioned in the Dutch Consumers Association (https://www.consumentenbond.nl/fietsstoeltje/veilige-fietsstoeltjes) which enables you to evaluate the safety of the seat.

Belts

  • Is there a safe belt on the seat? Your child must at least be stuck at the shoulders and the crotch.
  • Are the straps at least 20mm wide?
  • Can't your child open the belt? If you have to do 2 different actions to open it, for example press something and then pull it, it is good.

Protection and visibility

  • Can't your child get trapped anywhere?
  • Does the backrest also offer sufficient side protection?
  • Does a rear seat have its own reflectors, or reflective stickers?

Footrests

  • Bicycle seats for children up to 5 years old mostly have an integrated footrest, which only makes sense if they are being used. Always secure the feet securely in the footrest with the straps.
  • For bicycle seats for older children, the footrests are attached to the bicycle separately, which provides for insufficient protection between the foot and the spokes, even if there is a dress guard on the bike. Rather opt for a spoke protector in that case.

MY PERSONAL CHOICE

After having gone through lots of bike seat tests, I managed to finally downsize my choice to 3 very pretty models.
Moreover, they ended up top of the list in of these tests, so having the 3 above mentioned key elements covered, I decided to go for the most fancy designs.
Thule Yepp Nexxt Mini Kids Bicycle Front Seat (universal quick-release bracket, fitting both normal and ahead stems)
Bobike ONE Mini Front Kids Bicycle Seat  (universal mounting bracket for stem or frame)
Hamax Observer Front Seat (An innovative bracket ensures easy attachment/removing of seat and wind screen + Adapter bracket for a-head/threadless available)
Can you imagine how all my friends will be impressed when I will show up in one of these?!?

Although I think I’ll welcome some wind through my hairs, purchasing a windshield for extra comfort won’t be a bad idea in The Netherlands as it can get pretty windy and I reckon I won’t have that much hair in the beginning anyway. The colour-assorted combination with the seat looks amazing!  In the Netherlands, a rain cover won’t hurt either.

Last but not least we will also need to buy a safety helmet, but we’ll see about that later.

I need a nap really badly now. Talk you soon. Let me know which model you like best.

Warmest regards,

 

Yours,

 

LittleBoy2Be

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