Stay Warm This Winter
13 November 2020
Winter Cycle Clothing For Kids
So you’ve had a blast riding around on your bike all summer, maybe you even managed some longer or more difficult family rides for the first time? It would be a shame to stop now and just to put your bikes in the shed until Spring.
Now we’re not suggesting heading out in howling winds and riding in the lashing rain. But on cool, crisp winter days there’s nothing better than being out in the fresh air on your bike. To make sure it’s enjoyable and everyone comes home with big smiles you just need one thing - the right clothing.
Winter riding can be a little bit of a ‘Goldilocks’ situation, too many layers and you’ll overheat, not enough and you’ll be too cold. Plan your clothing around layers that can be added or removed to suit any changeable weather.
Wearing clothes that keep you warm and dry will make family bike rides more fun and you’ll be keeping fit and healthy throughout the winter without even realising!
What Do You Need for Autumn/Winter Bike Rides?
We have chosen a few key items, from the socks on your feet to the hat on your head that we think are the easiest ways to stay warm when cycling at this time of year. Included in our list are a few high visibility options too. When cycling to school it isn’t just warmth that is important but also being visible in traffic.
Don’t just think about dressing yourself for the weather, it’s a good idea to dress your bike too! All Frog Bikes are sold with mudguards, now is a good time to make sure they are fitted to your bike. This will prevent a lot of spray coming off the road or trail and soaking you from behind.
Another feature on our first pedal and hybrid bikes is the chain guard. This will also help prevent water from the road making your legs filthy and wet during heavy rain.
Always check the forecast before you leave for your ride. Here in the UK we can experience all 4 seasons in one bike ride, so give yourself a headstart and check what weather you might encounter whilst out.
Our winter clothing list is split into 4 sections. The sections are super easy to remember and will help you to make sure you are warm from head to toe - head, shoulders, knees and toes!
Head: Winter Cycling Headwear
Keeping little heads and ears warm on a bike takes a little more consideration as extra layers shouldn’t interfere with the correct fitting of their helmet.
Always check any additional layers don’t prevent the helmet strap from being secured. You’ll also need to remember to check the fit of their helmet if you take any hats or headbands off to ensure it still fits snugly.
Hats and Headbands
There are lots of options here to choose from, headbands covering your ears up to a full balaclava.
|Peaked cycling caps:|
Great for cooler weather or riding in the rain but they won’t keep your ears warm when it gets very cold.
|Cycling thermal skull caps:|
Perfect for 10 degrees and below and will keep the whole head warm
Warmer than a cap but not as thick as the thermal cap.
A headband can do just the job when the temperature is starting to drop
This would be for those super cold, snowy days.
You know the kind of days, when you can see your breath and even your nose is cold!
|You can even find a fun novelty balaclava like this Chewbacca one from Buff Kids!|
Buffs are a great addition to any winter riding kit bag, they can be worn on your neck or head. You can roll them up to use as a headband if your ears are chilly, or keep them around your neck, ready to pull them up over your mouth to keep your face warm. They’re thin and versatile so are a great addition to your winter kit.
For a detailed review on how to wear Buffs and why they are such a versatile and great piece of clothing for active kids take a look at Get Out with the Kids' Buff review here.
Eyewear - Clear glasses for mud
If your winter rides are in the forest or on trails there is often a chance of mud and dirt being kicked up into your face. If this sounds familiar then clear, protective eyewear might be worth considering. Lightweight, clear lensed glasses will be perfect for protecting your little shredders eyes.
If you’re mainly riding mountain bike trails together you may even want to explore the idea of clear goggles.
Shoulders: Winter Cycling Clothing
Cycling Jacket - Windproof and Waterproof
It’s important to decide what the primary use of the jacket will be before making your purchase. This can be one of the more expensive winter kit items and it’s best to get it right.
Will you be riding in all weather conditions no matter what? If so then the jacket needs to be a good quality rain jacket that is fully waterproof.
If you are less likely to go out on your bikes when the rain is horizontal then a showerproof or windproof layer may be more than adequate.
It’s then worth thinking if the coat will be used on the way to school or in low light. If the answer is yes, you may want to focus on jackets that are also high visibility rather than darker colours.
The best jacket will make your child visible in traffic, keep them dry when it rains and be big enough that you can fit additional layers underneath on very cold days. If a jacket can tick all of these boxes then it will keep them smiling and pedalling all year round.
Being too hot can be just as uncomfortable as being too cold. Make sure you choose the right base layer for those cold days, it could make or break your ride.
Wearing layers is a great way to make quick wardrobe adjustments when you’re out. It often feels super cold when you start riding, then 10 minutes later, when the pedals are turning and the blood is pumping around the body it suddenly feels 5 degrees warmer!
Similar to wearing layers on your body you can also layer up with gloves. If little hands are getting very cold then think about getting a thin liner glove to help to trap extra heat and stop those fingers going numb.
Knees: Winter Cycling Trousers
When it comes to bad weather cycling clothes, trousers are an important consideration. Trousers like jeans will stay wet for a long time. If it’s particularly cold and wet you may want to wear a special pair of cycling trousers whilst riding.
To stay dry go for a pair of waterproof over trousers. Check the width of the trouser at the bottom though, if they are too wide they may get caught in the bike's chain and get damaged. If they are wide at the bottom grab some cycling clips or straps to keep them tucked away neatly whilst riding.
Waterproof Cycling Trousers
If it’s a cold but dry day then just popping an extra thermal layer under their trousers should be sufficient. Once dressed with the thermals on underneath, check that they still have a full range of movement. If their trousers are too tight around the knee it may prevent them from pedalling comfortably.
Bib tights can be just the answer if you don’t want to get your normal clothes wet or dirty. They come up over the shoulder so feel nice and secure and will be lovely and warm on those colder rides. Many adult bib shorts come with a pad, which might be uncomfortable for children so we have sourced one option with and one without a pad.
Toes: Winter Cycling Socks and Shoes
Unlike your torso and hands, layering up when it comes to socks has the opposite effect! Wearing 2 pairs of socks can restrict circulation by making your shoes too tight, this will ultimately make your feet colder, not warmer. A pair of thicker, winter socks that allow for some movement inside the shoe should be more than sufficient on most rides.
If a thick sock still leaves toes a little cold then why not explore the option of overshoes. This extra layer goes over the top of your shoes so won’t interfere with circulation and will create a little more warmth (or waterproofing) if needed.
You may also want to carry a backpack or have a frame bag to carry extra layers. This allows you to layer up or down as you need and always have somewhere to keep those extra items.
A little frame bag like this one is perfect for putting extra gloves, a thin base layer and a buff inside. Now you’re ready for if the weather turns a little cooler than expected.
One last thing to consider during winter weather is if your little one is on a bicycle seat or towing device rather than pedalling for themselves. When you’re not pedalling you don’t create as much heat in your body. If your child is not actively cycling they will need more layers than those who are, especially on a windy day.
So there you have it, we think these extra layers will make autumn cycling fun, even on the coldest of days. With a little extra thought and preparation, the winter months can be the best time to get out on your bike. Being outside in the winter sun on a cold, crisp day is fantastic for blowing away those winter cobwebs and working off those extra mince pies!
Wrap Up Warm And Keep Riding Everyone!