Parents and carers should set a good example, following the Highway Code and teaching children road safety and awareness. Children are not ready to cycle on roads until they are around 11 years of age.
The further information section below has links to in-depth information on choosing a bike and helmet and for cycling routes and road safety training.
Get the right size bike for your child – and ensure both their bike and yours are roadworthy – check brakes and tyres.
Wear a well fitting helmet – they are particularly recommended for younger children. Look for a British Standard Safety Kite mark when purchasing. A helmet which doesn’t fit properly does not offer good protection.
Wear bright clothes and put reflectors and lights on your child’s bike so they can be seen by others.
Daytime riding is safer. If riding at twilight or in the dark always use a working white front light and red backlight, plus a red rear reflector – it’s the law.
Cycle on the road not the pavement – unless it’s a designated cycle path
Adults cycle behind – or if there are two adults, have one at the back and one in front of the children.
Take care at all times – especially at junctions, bends or entrances.
When cycling on the road – follow the rules – don’t jump red lights; signal clearly at all times; ride where you can see and be seen and make eye contact with other road users so you know they’ve seen you, especially at junctions.
When cycling on shared paths – keep left and be alert for walkers, wheelchair users, or horse riders; don’t go too fast and use your bell so others know you are approaching; don’t assume other path users can hear you – give way to others, slow down and stop if necessary.