One of our favorite family activities is taking walks around our neighborhood. Knowing the four stages of family walks with young children can help keep things fun (even when mama and daddy might need to exercise a little patience!).
Our family loves to takes walks.
But walks with young children can be a challenge.
There’s nothing worse than being halfway through your neighborhood and having your 30-pound child begging for you to carry her the rest of the way home because she’s just plain tuckered out.
Over the past 7 1/2 years of parenting three girls all born within four years of each other, my hubby and I have learned a few tricks for taking family walks with young children.
It helps to realize there are really four stages of family walks with young children.
This stage will last from newborn through about age 2 1/2.
Family walks will be fun, easy, and your baby or toddler might even nap during them!
At 7, 5, and 3, my girls are all past this stage now, but I often really miss it!
At this stage, your older toddler is beginning to realize that he or she will actually be able to be in control one day!
While children in this stage can still ride in a stroller during family walks, it’s also fun to let them try riding a small tricycle built just for their little legs and arms.
When our girls were younger, it was helpful to have a tricycle that had a handle on the back, where hubby or I could push them if they got tired.
Between 12 and 18 months, children can learn how to pedal a tricycle.
It is so much fun to watch their eyes light up when they perfect this skill and realize newfound independence!
Once they perfect pedaling, they can learn how to steer, and you officially have a child who can ride a tricycle on family walks!
This might make for slower walks at times, but try to keep in perspective that this time is more for family bonding than for hard-core exercise.
We are currently using the The Perfect Fit 4-in-1 Trike with our recently-turned 3-year-old and our 5-year-old as well (when they play nice and share!).
The girls LOVE this tricycle!!
The Perfect Fit Trike is a stroller, push trike, and full trike all in one. It’s a ride-on that grows with your child.
I am a HUGE advocate of not overbuying toys (been there, done that when I just had one kid!), and I love how this tricycle will grow with the child, so there is no need to purchase a different toy for each stage of family walks with young children!
With this tricycle, the parents first push and steer.
As the child grows, the parent can steer while the child pedals.
Once they master pedaling, they can begin steering themselves.
You can leave the push handle, so that the parent can still push if needed (or if you child gets tired halfway through a walk–a perfect feature for our 3-year-old right now!).
Once the child learns how to both pedal and steer, you can remove the push handle, so they feel full independence–and are ready to one-day learn how to ride a bicycle!
The Perfect Fit 4-in-1 Trike would make a great Christmas gift for a child ages 9 months to 3 (and children up to age 5 can use it, so it will last for years to come!). You can find these awesome tricycles at Toys ‘R Us.
Check out how the Perfect Fit 4-in-1 Trike in the video below (or click to the Little Tikes You Tube channel to watch it):
What are your trips for taking family walks with young children?
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Little Tikes. The opinions and text are all mine.