Some of my best childhood memories are memories of me riding my bike. I had one of those huge banana seat bikes. The seat was pink and me and my brother took clothes pins and placed game cards to our spokes. We'd ride around for hours, the click-click-click of our wheels and those playing cards reverberating down the street. Then, of course, we didn't wear helmets or any kind of safety gear. I remember standing up on my pedals with my legs clinched straight in position going down a hill. The inertia and speed took over as I let go of the handle bars and spread my arms open wide. I was flying.
I finally learned to wear a helmet when I was 26 years old. I was one of those "cool" people who thought helmets were dumb. I had enough childhood memories of being perfectly safe on my bicycle that I never considered what risk I might have been taking not wearing bicycle safety gear. My husband, of course, made it a point to show me bike wreck footage of people not wearing protective gear. So then I decided I liked my brain and should maybe be a better example to my kids.
Flash forward to motherhood and I feel a little more inclined to force my child to wear a helmet. We emphasize the importance of always wearing a helmet and the proper safety gear when our kids are being physically active. I am a lot less "free range" than my mom was, but I don't think that is what matters.
I don't know what has changed about the world, but my heart races when my kid lets go of the handle bars.
What matters is that I am able to pass on a love of activity and fun movement to my child. Exercise is so important and, as I have learned, exercise and safety go hand in hand.
When I had kids I made sure that family activity was something we were going to make a part of our lives..
Not everyone knows how to pass on that gift, though, and for those families having resources to help them figure out how to get their young families active is so important. Healthy Families is one such resource! Do you know who they are? They are the ones who hand out the Happy Birthday Baby Book in Arkansas and areas of Tennessee. Now you can find their resources online at their site, HealthyFamiliesNow.net, and they've expanded their database.
Just in time for the Holiday Season, Healthy Families is giving away a Bicycle Safety Starter kit on this here blog. Check out the Rafflecopter giveaway below and enter to win this awesome safety kit for a kiddo you know this holiday season... OH! And get out move!
For more information on Healthy Families and their resources check out www.HealthyFamiliesNow.net!