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Old 08-08-02, 03:06 PM   #1
bikeman
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How have kids impacted your cycling?

I may have missed something, but I don't remember anyone discussing their kids - ages, sex (male/female), do they cycle? do they impact how much, how often you ride. Has your riding changed since kids came along? Etc.

I didn't ride as much when they were little, but of course I do a lot now and try to stay involved in their lives in many ways (like going mountain biking on occasion)

I personally have three children -

Son: Age 25 (out of college and employed - rides Trials and MTB, No road)
Son: Age 20 (in college - rides Trials and MTB and BMX - occassional road - like to class)
Daughter: Age 15 (in high school - occassional tandem with me, MTB)
and of course my spouse: Age is a secret - tandem and neighborhood rides on a hybrid with my daughter or me.

Everyone in my family like bikes in general and my youngest son is working part-time in a bike shop as a mechanic. Great kids and think it cool that dad is a hardcore roadie. Now I just have to convince them to get out on the road with me.

Tell us about your families. If you are single, childless or empty-nester that's cool. Maybe tell us about your nieces and nephews, grandkids, friend's kids that you ride with, etc.

Just curious.
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Old 08-08-02, 03:16 PM   #2
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No kids, just cats. If it doesn't have fur, I'm not having it! I'd screw a poor kid up! Am 24, have a 5 year old nephew. Lots of nephews/second-third-fourth-whatever baby cousins in Montreal. French Catholics..go figure
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Old 08-08-02, 03:24 PM   #3
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I have one daughter who is 7 and loves to ride bikes. I bought a Tag-A-Long (similar to a bicycle but is missing the front tire and has a hitch that attaches to my seat post) 2 years ago so I could take her with me on longer rides. This will be the last year that she can use it do to her height so next year we'll be shopping for a tandem.

We also ride together with her on her own bike. Last night we road about 10 miles together utilizing the bike trail and then explored the state hospital grounds that are near our house. We ride together quite a bit and she also rides her bike with me while I'm out running so she can keep up and have fun too.

I'm racing in the Tour de Tamarack in Meadville, PA on Sept. 1st and she'll be racing in the kid's race there as well. I'm not going to push her into hardcore riding whether road or MTB, but at this point it seems like she'll have all the motivation she needs. She had me explain to her how gears work and loves to watch me work on our bikes.
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Old 08-08-02, 03:33 PM   #4
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My oldest son is now 13 and able to go mountain biking with me. He would rather do BMX, but at least I'm starting to get him to move to the lighter side with me. When the kiddos were smaller it cut into my riding time quite a bit but the last year or so things have picked up. The state I live in has a cross state road ride every summer. It will be quite a feat to get him to turn into a roadie but that's what I'm working toward next...
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Old 08-08-02, 03:38 PM   #5
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We just had first child this last February and it definitely put a kink in my biking habits. I used to be able to just take off when my wife wasn't looking, but now I try to get the biking in whenever I can. So far, the best tactic is to get out of the house before anyone

Now I just need to convince the wifey that the baby is old enough to go in the Burley trailer
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Old 08-09-02, 06:43 AM   #6
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Originally posted by SoreBum
Now I just need to convince the wifey that the baby is old enough to go in the Burley trailer
Congrats on the new addition! Sounds as if a Burley trailer is in the works for you. Make sure you put a helmet on the little one. I saw a guy with an infant in the trailer without a helmet and it scared the heck out of me just thinking about the consequences of not wearing a helmet.

They didn't make trailers when my kids were little so we just used a child seat on the back of my wife's bike. We lived in a small town then and my son loved to ride on the back. He'd get so relaxed that he'd fall asleep and rest this head on my wife's back until they got home. I guess that is what started the whole fascination with bikes in my kids.

BTW Lego Brand and Playmobil make cool little bikes with people with helmets on that fit on the bikes. Fun toys that my kids held onto despite being grown up. Cool to put on the top of the computer
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Old 08-09-02, 07:02 AM   #7
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Originally posted by SoreBum
We just had first child this last February and it definitely put a kink in my biking habits. I used to be able to just take off when my wife wasn't looking, but now I try to get the biking in whenever I can. So far, the best tactic is to get out of the house before anyone

Now I just need to convince the wifey that the baby is old enough to go in the Burley trailer
And to think that I was the only wife called wify.

No kids for us yet. Trying to get in as much biking as we can this year and early next year because I know after that, if all goes well, that I'll have to take some time off. I feel like I'm running out of time way too quickly though!
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Old 08-09-02, 08:19 AM   #8
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Kids have had a positive impact on my cycling. Now that they are all grown (my youngest will be 22 next month) I have a lot more money to spend on cycling stuff.
:thumbup:
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Old 08-09-02, 09:26 AM   #9
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Kids definetly put a squeeze on the time commitment...my 4 year old son likes tooling along on his bike when we ride around the block...and he always asks me how fast I went when I go the road alone...kinda fun impressing junior while he is still easily impressed!

My 1 year old daughter likes the trailer, I think...she sits quietly staring out the front...

My wife is patient enough to let me ride the MTB trails once a week with the guys from the office, but road time is either at 6a Saturday, or before the kids and wife get home...
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Old 08-09-02, 12:03 PM   #10
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It's the kids that got me cycling, 5 years ago I taught the boy to ride a bike and because I live right by a cycle track decided to buy a cheap bike for myself so that I could ride up and down the track with him.

I jumped on the bike and instantly became as young as my son, We used to go riding on the track for a few miles and in those days a few miles was a long way.

The cheap bike has gone (it didn't last long off-road), but has since been replaced with other bikes and a fanatical devotion to bike riding that I didn't know existed within me.

My son is now ten and I have a daughter aged eight, as a family our favourite ride is to catch a train up the valley and use the local Sustrans route to cycle home traffic free, it's 17 miles and the kids love it.
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Old 08-09-02, 12:51 PM   #11
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No kids yet, not human puppys at least. I have my pets. I was going to get a Burley for the dogs but my husband thinks I have lost my mind. I will have to make a tiny helmet for my bearded dragon.......

By the way, what is the age that you can start taking the kids on the bikes (in the trailers, car seat attachments)? I really want kids bad, but my husband says we don't have enough money yet. I was made to be a mommy!!! I can't wait!!!!!
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Old 08-09-02, 01:24 PM   #12
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3 kids. 14, 9 and 7. They are so busy in there activities that I get little time to ride this year. My oldest is a hard core softball player and has no interest in riding, my middle daughter has down syndrome and can't ride yet so we have got her an extension and she rides that way and my little one can hardly wait until she can ride with me. That is cool !!! Hubby is kinda getting into biking. The family does support me though. We do go on family outings on the local bike trail. I do like going out on my own though...clears the head.
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Old 08-09-02, 02:09 PM   #13
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The baby in the pic is my oldest – it was taken over 7 years ago (before I learned to lower a seat post). About the time I seriously started riding. I now have three – 7, 5, and 14 months. I started taking my oldest offroad when he was 5, and now we ride all over together, plus a lot of tandem riding. When he started riding without training wheels I started riding a unicycle – so that we could learn together. I’m doing similar things with my 5 year old right now. A few times a week I take my baby out in a Rhode Gear baby seat on the back of my single speed and hit the hills – he loves the sceanery and the time with dad, and I get serious training miles in. My off road riding has dwindled to once or twice a week, but I still average over 200 total miles a week – most of which is commuting and extensions to commuting.
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Old 08-09-02, 02:35 PM   #14
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Originally posted by Redhed
By the way, what is the age that you can start taking the kids on the bikes (in the trailers, car seat attachments)? I really want kids bad, but my husband says we don't have enough money yet. I was made to be a mommy!!! I can't wait!!!!!
You can take them in a trailer or on a seat when they can comfortably sit up by themselves without tipping over.

Tell your husband that you'll never have enough money for children. You can't think of it as a "bottom-line" financial decision. When we had our first one, we didn't have much, rented an apartment, had one old car, was a school teacher (aka made no money) and we still made it. Despite all the work and toil, it was worth every minute (and dollar that we didn't have).
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Old 08-12-02, 06:28 AM   #15
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i get up @ 5am weekdays and go out early on days off to be with the family. after doing the rides i need to be complete... i get the 7 year old and 4 year old on bikes to go to the park or do a trail or something and just tool around --

with all their activities (baseball, t-ball, karate, soccer, cub scouts, gymnastics....) and soon homework..... many times they want to shoot hoops or practice baseball in the yard....

i don't lead them too much. i ask 'do you want to go for a bike ride?' it has been so hot here this summer that after being at camp in 90+ and humid weather, their energy levels, while not exhausted are limited.
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Old 08-12-02, 06:53 AM   #16
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It was my son that actually got me into cycling to begin with. He's on a local MTB racing team and needed a road bike to train on. When we went to the LBS, I ended up buying a bike for myself, too. At the time, he was 16. We've always had a great relationship and he never minded riding with me, even though he had to wait for me at every turn. He was quick to give me praise and encouragement as my skills and endurance improved, which motivated me even more.

He's 19 now and going into his sophomore year in college. We still enjoy hanging out with each other--we spent a week in Colorado this past spring, just the 2 of us, and had an absolute blast--and I plan on taking advantage of that for as long as it continues (hopefully it won't stop).

I've been a single parent since my son was 2. It was a tough road at times, but I wouldn't trade it for all the tea in China.

Cycling people, both road cyclists and mountain bikers, are perhaps the coolest people in the world. Some of my best times spent with my son have been either riding on the road or at mountain bike races.
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Old 08-12-02, 06:55 AM   #17
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No kids here. But for some reason everyone in my fam is getting a bike...I can't figure it out.
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Old 08-12-02, 08:41 AM   #18
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No kids here. But for some reason everyone in my fam is getting a bike...I can't figure it out.
Gee Matt do you think it's because you've been a positive role model?

Great news. Just don't leave them in the dust when you all go out riding.
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Old 08-12-02, 11:45 AM   #19
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Great idea for a thread!

Biking changes every year with myself and my kids. I have a 6 year old daughter and a three year old son. My son turned 3 in June.

I have definitely had to be more creative at getting my rides in since we started having kids. Getting quality rides in most times is a testimony to my dedication to both riding and to my family. Biking is the only one of my activities that my wife supports 100%, although sometimes she gets a little jealous of the time I spend riding (I had to cut out of this past Saturday's group ride at 50 miles...the time limit set by my wife was up!). As my kids get older it gets easier to get riding time.

My kids love bicycles. We both ride and take care of our bicycles together. Once a week I set up my workstand out in the driveway and we wash our bicycles together. My son has a new Schwinn "Gremlin" and he rides like a fiend. He has already been on two 10+ mile rides with me..training wheels, single speed and all. His big thing now is passing me on our rides. He chuckles with glee as he zips past me. It's fun to see! His sister is driven to tears sometimes on our rides because she doesn't like her brother passing her.

I could talk about this one forever........
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Old 08-12-02, 12:07 PM   #20
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My boy, now 2 years 4 months did change my cycling. The wife and I would go riding quite a bit and all vacations involved taking the bikes along.

Now, I usually ride in the morning before my wife and son wake-up, and one day during the weekend for a couple of hours. Since having him, I've gotten back into road cycling and of course riding with him around the neighborhood.

The best part is when I get home and my wife and son are in the driveway playing. As soon as I get out of my truck, he runs over to the bike with the baby seat and starts saying "Bik, Bik, Bik".

There is a short off-road trail about 1 mile away that he just loves to go to. We'll do a loop and then he begins, "gen, gen" meaning Again, so we usually do it 3 or 4 times.

I must admit, I miss those all day trips with my wife, but at the same time, I can't wait to start taking my son around the neighborhood on his bike w/training wheels.

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Old 08-12-02, 04:46 PM   #21
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My wife doesn't cycle at all, so cycling has always been a solo activity.

The first child got a relatively late start on the bike: started tricycling at 3, using the trailercycle at 4 and a bit her own bicycle that year (she really was interested in her own set of wheels at 5).

Before she was 4, I cycled for commuting and errands, and rode at night, with the occasional outing on saturday. Quite a change from the "before-kids" period when I cycled mostly on weekends.

After she got the trailercycle, we did lots of cycling on saturdays and during my summer recess, gradually increasing distances every year.

We also got a second child in March 2000, and I found that the bicycle was also a good way to get her out of the house where she could easily feel that "we always take care of the crying baby".

Last March, I added a trailer to my stable, and now tour with both children. We have slowly increased the distance covered, and both kids are really keen on cycling. This Summer, I did a one-week loaded tour with the oldest daughter on her trailercycle (60-100 km/day)... and for most of the 3 other weeks, I rode with the "road train" to various regional outings (typically 50-80 km/day around Montréal). There were days when both kids came to wake me up at 6:00 a.m. and ask me for a bike ride!

So I think I do a bit _less_ mileage than I did before. What I'm missing are the long multi-week tours away from everything. But the kids have to grow before they enjoy bike touring even when it rains hard.

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Old 08-12-02, 06:15 PM   #22
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The first child got a relatively late start on the bike: started tricycling at 3, using the trailercycle at 4 and a bit her own bicycle that year (she really was interested in her own set of wheels at 5).
No problem there. Although I triked when I was a kid, I didn't start two wheeling until I was 16.

Of course I'm not letting that happen with my kids.

Emily is 6 and rides 2 wheels (but needs lots more practice). James is 3 and rides with trainer wheels. (Yes I know the arguments against trainer wheels, but we're working on it.)

I can't wait until both kids are competent enough to do a bit of riding with me.
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Old 08-12-02, 06:33 PM   #23
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I often regret not spending more time with my youngest son who is now 27. I was off somewhere bicycling instead. I couldn't get him interested in cycling.

Now my kids are gone and I ride less than when they were young, it's not supposed to work that way. Go figure.

It's good to see so many BF members are including their kids in some way. I wish I had.
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Old 08-12-02, 07:17 PM   #24
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My 7 year-old daughter begs to go to the park and ride her bike. "I just feel like riding my bike," she explains.

My 17 year-old stepson doesn't bike, but he goes for his evening run. Exercise is a new thing for him--intelligent lad that he is, he will make the most of it, I'm sure!
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Old 08-12-02, 07:21 PM   #25
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I often regret not spending more time with my youngest son who is now 27. I was off somewhere bicycling instead. I couldn't get him interested in cycling.

Now my kids are gone and I ride less than when they were young, it's not supposed to work that way. Go figure.

It's good to see so many BF members are including their kids in some way. I wish I had.
Louis, don't give up hope!

I think that your feelings are an indicator that something new is on the horizon. Go for it--call your son. It's never too late!

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