Keeping your Kids Safe while Riding Bikes

May is National Bicycle Safety Month. A pediatrician offers some safety tips to keep in mind if your child is learning how to ride a bike.

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CLEVELAND - May is National Bicycle Safety Month.

Every year, thousands of children suffer head injuries from falling off their bikes, which is why it’s so important for them to wear a helmet.

And not just any helmet, but one that fits.

“It should ride about one inch above your eyebrows, and the biggest mistake you see in the suburbs is the kids riding with it on the back of their head,” notes Richard So, MD, pediatrician for Cleveland Clinic Children’s. “That’s not going to protect your child. It should be like one inch above, and it shouldn’t rock too much, it shouldn’t feel loose, and you should wear the strap.”

Dr. So said the sooner you can teach your child to wear a helmet, the better.

That way they’re used to wearing it as they get older.

Parents should also wear a helmet to help reinforce the message.

Some other safety tips to keep in mind are making sure your child knows the rules of the road and what areas could be dangerous, like hills.

If they’re planning to ride at night, they should have reflective gear.

They also need to be careful with cars pulling in and out of driveways. It can be easy for a driver to miss someone on their bike.

Finally, double-check the condition of your child’s helmet.

“Helmets, they’re only made to crash once because most of them are made from collapsible foam,” said Dr. So. “If you have a helmet that was a hand-me-down or it’s been in an accident, or it’s from before 1999, you’re better off getting a new helmet.”

Dr So said all the same rules should apply for electric scooters.

Those have grown in popularity and can be even more dangerous in a crash.

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Cleveland Clinic is a nonprofit multispecialty academic medical center that integrates clinical and hospital care with research and education. Located in Cleveland, Ohio, it was founded in 1921 by four renowned physicians with a vision of providing outstanding patient care based upon the principles of cooperation, compassion and innovation. Cleveland Clinic has pioneered many medical breakthroughs, including coronary artery bypass surgery and the first face transplant in the United States. Cleveland Clinic is consistently recognized in the U.S. and throughout the world for its expertise and care. Among Cleveland Clinic’s 81,000 employees worldwide are more than 5,743 salaried physicians and researchers, and 20,160 registered nurses and advanced practice providers, representing 140 medical specialties and subspecialties. Cleveland Clinic is a 6,690-bed health system that includes a 173-acre main campus near downtown Cleveland, 23 hospitals, 276 outpatient facilities, including locations in northeast Ohio; Florida; Las Vegas, Nevada; Toronto, Canada; Abu Dhabi, UAE; and London, England. In 2023, there were 13.7 million outpatient encounters, 323,000 hospital admissions and observations, and 301,000 surgeries and procedures throughout Cleveland Clinic’s health system. Patients came for treatment from every state and 132 countries. Visit us at Follow us at News and resources available at

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