It's a good thing I re-learnt how to ride a bike again last year, or else this Thule riding seat for infants would have been lost on me. After buying the brilliant Thule jogger before my baby was born (you can read about it here), I'm a groupie of this dependable and solid brand, and their bike seat is just that too. In fact, I once wrote an article about a MacBook that survived a 50 000 foot drop from a light aircraft, because it was in a Thule case.
The Thule Ridealong bike seat has a capacity of 22kg, which technically means you could ride with your six-year-old kid safely in the back. While you might not want to ride the Argus Cycle Challenge with your child, it's really great for holidays or even cycling around your 'hood, and opens up a world of riding with your child, when it might have been closed/unavailable before.
For starters, the seat is easy to mount on your bike, and it's easy adjustable and reclinable (so your child can sleep). I've been told that if your bike has cables running down the seat tube, or has rear suspension, it's not compatible for the seat, but don't worry – it seems only the pro bikers have bikes like these, so you should be safe.
I tested the seat out on my baby, but she's not totally sitting solo yet, and not yet a year, so it's not yet advisable to take her for a spin. I did test out the padded straps and reclining features – the former are easy to adjust, while with one lever, the seat reclines so your child can snooze. The straps don't need to be readjusted when the seat reclines.
Since I couldn't take my baby for a test drive, I read every independent review of people who had taken their kids for rides, and I couldn't come across one unfavourable remark. In fact, the Thule rates as one of the best, if not the best, in its category. I'm excited to ride the parks with my daughter, and good news is that you could be riding along with your kid, as next week I'm giving away a RideAlong.
Here are the full specs:
- Seat can be mounted/dismounted from bike in seconds with the universal quick-release bracket, fitting most bike frames (27.2-40 mm diameter round frames and maximum 40 x 55 mm oval frames)
- Integrated protection wings safeguard your child’s hands when the bike is leaned against a wall
- Your child rides safely with the adjustable 3-point harness
- Smooth, comfortable ride for your child due to the DualBeam suspension system that absorbs road shock
- Your child is quickly and easily secured with a childproof safety buckle with large buttons
- Added visibility thanks to built-in reflector and safety light attachment point
- Ensures a perfect fit as your child grows thanks to the single-hand adjustable foot rests and foot straps
- Detachable, water-repellent padding is machine washable and reversible, offering two color options.
- Designed and tested for children from 9 months* to 6 years old, up to 48.5 lbs/22 kg.*Consult a pediatrician for children under 1 year old.
- Comfortable for on-the-go naps with five different reclining options (up to 20°), easily adjusted using only one hand
The seat costs R2 499. For full product information, visit www.thule.com/za. For dealer enquiries contact THULE SA on 0861 1 THULE (84853)