Your Warm Weather Safety Checkup
As we enter spring and begin to look forward to the warm months ahead, the kids will be eager to get outside. Whether it’s road hockey in the driveway, shooting hoops, bike riding or hopscotch, kids love playing outside. And they’ve been patiently waiting for the snow to melt. Below are a few tried-and-tested tips that will help keep your kids safe while they’re enjoying their favourite sports and activities.
1. The Helmet Check
Bike riding is one of the most common activities for kids of all ages. Whether they’re biking to school, taking a quick trip down to the local park or riding the trails in a nearby forest, this is a popular activity. But there are dangers that we as parents need to be aware of. While traffic can be one of the biggest dangers, falls can also put a child’s safety at risk. That’s why it’s so important to ensure they not only wear a helmet, but that their helmet fits properly. Without a proper fitting helmet, your child is not as safe as they could be.
Remember, it’s all in the fit. A well-fitting helmet sits just above the eyebrows. The straps should create a snug enough fit that the helmet doesn’t rock back and forth. You can adjust the straps and use the padding inside the helmet to produce a snug fit. Once you have it where you think it should be, do a quick test. Have your child shake their head. If the helmet doesn’t move, you can take comfort that your child has a helmet that is properly fitted and ready to keep them safe.
It’s also important to note that while many provinces and states require kids to wear helmets when they ride their bike, it doesn’t fully cover all activities that kids love to participate in. This includes skateboarding, rollerblading and riding their scooter. Talk to your children about the benefits of wearing a helmet and teach them that it’s an integral part of their safety. We know the helmet can be perceived as “uncool” by many kids. Spend some time looking for creative ways to show them that a helmet is just an extension of their activity and even the pros wear them!
2. A Quick Playground Inspection
The long, cold and snowy weather can have a big impact on your local playground. The winter weather can actually affect the structural integrity of your child’s favourite playground equipment like the slide or monkey bars. Before you take your kids to the playground to enjoy the sunshine, take a trip their yourself. Do a thorough inspection and make sure everything is working properly. This can bring peace of mind before you let your kids enjoy all the fun that comes with this summer-time favourite.
If you find there are some issues with the playground, call your local parks and recreation department and let them know. This can help keep others in the neighbourhood safe.
3. Test Your Outdoor Toys
With all the excitement of wanting to get outside, kids can be in a rush to grab their bike, wagon, pogo stick or other toys and just get out there. Remember, it has been months since their favourite toys have been in use. Toys that are just being pulled out of hibernation (aka storage), should be tested, especially bicycles. Make sure they’re functioning properly and nothing is out of place. For example, when it comes to their bike, make sure the chain is in tact and working properly, the brakes are not worn out and the handle bars are securely fastened.
Taking a few minutes to do a thorough inspection of your kid’s favourite toys can make a big difference when it comes to their safety.
4. Consider Safety From All Angles
When we talk about outdoor safety, many of us automatically think about helmets or traffic safety. But safety needs to be looked at in the context of what sport or activity your child is taking part in. For example, if your kid is getting ready to enjoy some rollerblading, make sure you protect their hands, wrists and knees with the proper safety gear. Wrist guards, kneepads and gloves can help keep your child safe as they race around the neighbourhood streets with their friends.
Having Fun While Staying Safe
The warm sunny months are around the corner and it’s a time that’s full of excitement, sports and activities with friends. We know your children can’t wait to get outside and enjoy the warm weather. By keeping these things in mind, you can ensure that safety doesn’t get lost in all the excitement and joy.
Don’t Forget the Driveway
While the driveway can seem like a pretty safe place to play, it has its own dangers. Our Stop-it! driveway safety net can help make your driveway a safer place for your children to play. Take a moment to see how it works, see what other parents are saying and and even purchase yours now before the summer months get here!
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