Shotgun bike seats are becoming more and more common. They are designed to fit on any bike frame, allowing your child to sit right in front of you.
Shotgun bike seats are a relatively new invention. The idea was conceived by a couple who wanted to ride their bicycles without using a rear-mounted kids’ seat, which isn’t so safe or ideal for kids between 2 and 5 years old
For mountain bikers, the shotgun bike seat is a great way to get out there with your kids and allow them to experience the fun of mountain biking safely.
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What Is A Shotgun Bike Seat?
A shotgun bike seat is a type of front-mounted bicycle seat where a child sits between the handlebars and the adult riding the bike.
Although there is a “Shotgun” brand of bike seat, the name has become synonymous with any type of front-mounted bike seat where a child “rides up front” or “shotgun” with the rider.
The shotgun bike seat consists of two main parts: the seat itself and the frame that holds it up. Some will come with all the parts you need integrated, whilst others, the bike seat, and the attachment to the frame are separate. You will also find some shotgun seats come with handlebars for your child to hold on to, whilst others do not, or you need to purchase the handlebars separately.
The frame part of the shotgun bike is usually made out of aluminum. Aluminum is durable and lightweight. It also allows the seat to fold easily.
How Do You Use A Shotgun Bike Seat?
To use a shotgun bike seat, simply take it out of its storage container and unfold it. Then, attach it to the frame using the provided instructions.
Once you have placed the shotgun bike seat on top of your bike’s frame, you should then adjust the height of the seat so that it is level with your own seat.
Make sure that the seat is as high as possible before adjusting it to fit your child. Otherwise, you may end up with a very low seat that could cause injury if your child falls off.
Once you have adjusted the height of the seat, you will want to make sure that the seat is firmly secured to the bike frame. To do this, you will need to tighten the straps that connect the seat to the frame.
Shotgun bike seats are easy to install yourself. Just ensure that it is installed correctly before riding, and the straps are tight and secure.
Why Should I Buy A Shotgun Bike Seat?
There are many reasons why you would want to buy a shotgun bike seat. Some of these include:
- Safety – Having a shotgun bike seat allows your child to sit right in front of you, where you can easily see them and supervise them.
- Convenience – Shotgun bike seats allow you to ride your bike without removing your child from the backseat, which makes it easier to navigate through congested streets.
- Comfort – Shotgun bike seats may offer superior comfort compared to traditional rear-mounted bike seats.
- Storage – Shotgun bike seats are much smaller than traditional bike seats. This makes them perfect for storing away when not in use. They can also be folded up into a small package, making it easy to store them away or take them with you when you travel.
What Are The Pros And Cons Of Using A Shotgun Bike Seat?
- Easy to install – Shotgun bike seats are easy to assemble. All you have to do is remove them from their packaging and then attach them to your bike.
- Safe – Shotgun bike seats protect kids allow you to keep a closer eye on your child whilst riding.
- Not For Smaller Kids – Shotgun bike seats aren’t meant for younger children. They are only designed for kids between the ages of 2 and 5, though some are marketed to children as young as 9 months.
What Are The Best Shotgun Bike Seats On The Market?
Today, there are many companies making these front-mounted kids’ seats for bikes, so finding the best of the bunch can become a bit of a mission.
Here are some of the best shotgun bike seats and front-mounted kids’ bike seats that you can buy today.
The original and the best? This basic SHOTGUN kids bike seat helped coin the term Shotgun for kids’ front-mounted bike seats and continues to be the market leader for this type of product.
They are designed for all types of Mountain Bikes, with flat or sloping top tubes. The seat is easy to install and remove and includes grippy aluminum footpegs for junior rider comfort. By fitting the seat half way between the handlebars and the adult seat you should be able to maintain balance.
The Shotgun MTB is suitable for children aged 2 to 5 years (or up to 48 pounds/22 kgs).
You can purchase just the seat or a seat and handlebar combo package which can make it easier for your child to grip on (though shorter riders have noted that this isn’t always as convenient for the adult rider as it makes them sit up too tall!).
The Thule Yepp Mini front mount bike seat is one of the most popular shotgun bike seats available today. It comes with a detachable handlebar strap, which means that you don’t have to worry about attaching the seat to your bike. You simply attach the handlebar strap to your handlebars and then attach the seat to the handlebar strap.
The Thule Yepp Mini has been designed to meet all safety standards set by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). It features a five-point harness system, which ensures maximum protection for your kid. In addition, the seat is made from durable plastic, which makes it extremely resistant to damage.
The UrRider foldable bike seat is another excellent option if you want a shotgun bike seat that will look good while providing maximum safety and taking up limited space.
This seat is made from heavy-duty steel, which makes it incredibly strong, yet light, at just 2.9lbs (1.3 kgs).
This seat is designed to fit any standard-sized bicycle frame – be it a mountain bike, ladies’ bike or foldable commuter bike.
We love that the UrRider is a complete unit, so the soft grip handlebars are included as part of the structure, as well as the foot stirrups.
It has a great weight capacity too, meaning children up to approximately 6 years old or 60 pounds can safely ride in this front-mounted child’s seat.
The Tyke Toter bike seat is one of our top choices when it comes to shotgun bike seats. This seat is designed to provide maximum safety for your child, and it does this in a number of ways.
First of all, the Tyke Toter seat is designed to be used with bicycles with a width of 20 inches or more. This means that it will work perfectly with most modern adult bikes.
The seat and handlebar attachment are in a singular unit that attaches to the adult’s seat stem rather than the tube or handlebars like the other products we’ve mentioned. This makes it super versatile, no matter what sort of bike you ride.
Finally, this seat is made from tough, durable material, which makes it extremely resilient to scratches and other forms of damage. Its slim design stores well and weighs just 2 pounds making it easy to travel with.
The Bomoya F4545 is another good option if you want a shotgun bike seat that will last a long time. This seat is designed to withstand extreme weather conditions.
It is highly adjustable, which allows you to customize it according to your child’s height.
It is also equipped with a set of foot straps that are ideal for your child’s safety and comfort. The seat is made from strong polyester material, which makes it extremely durable.
It is important to note that this seat doesn’t come with a child’s handlebar, you will need to purchase this separately.
The Hamax Observer is a great shotgun bike seat if you want something that looks really cool. It comes in two colors: black or red. Both versions feature a unique design, which gives them a futuristic look.
The Hamax Observer features a five-point harness, which ensures maximum protection. It also includes a padded headrest, to provide additional comfort for your child. This feature is lacking in the products that work only as a seat.
The seat is made from high-quality plastic, which makes it very durable. It is also lightweight, which makes it easy to carry around.
Shotgun Bike Seats – Buyer’s Guide
These days, almost everyone owns a bicycle, and riding a bike is becoming a part of our daily lives. Whether you like cycling for fun or commuting to work, there are many different types of biking solutions out there that allow your child to safely ride along with you.
When choosing a shotgun bike seat for your child, you should take the following into consideration.
When purchasing a shotgun bike seat for your child, you will want to ensure that the particular shotgun bike seat is made from quality materials, such as sturdy plastic and high-quality, durable straps.
You should always choose a shotgun bike seat that has been tested and certified by the CPSC, so that you know that it meets all safety requirements.
Another thing that you should take into consideration when choosing a shotgun bike seat for kids is whether or not the seat is adjustable.
In other words, you should check whether or not the seat can be adjusted up and down, forward and backward, and side-to-side to find the ideal position for you and your child.
Probably the most important thing you are looking for as a parent of a small child is the safety features.
Safety features for a shotgun or front-mounted bike seat include things such as:
- Does the seat come with a harness (not all front-mounted seats do, which is why it’s important to keep your child’s age in mind, their ability to balance independently and participate in the riding experience).
Don’t forget, your child will, of course, need a safety helmet when they are riding with you shotgun. Check out our guide to correctly fitting your child’s bike helmet.
You should also make sure that the shotgun bike seats for kids that you buy are appropriate for your child’s weight. Whilst ages are given as guidance, you really need to base it on your child’s weight and the manufacturers’ guidelines.
On the other hand, a shotgun bike seat that is light enough may not offer sufficient support.
Another thing you should think about is the weight of the shotgun bike seat itself. When choosing a shotgun bike seat for your child, it is best to go for a model that is lightweight enough so that it doesn’t weigh your bike down too much.
Another thing you should consider is how comfortable the shotgun bike seat is. Therefore, if you are looking for a shotgun bike seat for your little boy/girl, make sure it fits their size well and has sufficient padding. A seat without a backrest may become uncomfortable after longer periods of riding.
Finally, you should also consider how much money you plan on spending on a shotgun bike seat for your kid. As mentioned earlier, not all shotgun bike seats for kids are created equal.
So, it is best to shop around until you find a shotgun bike seat that fits your budget and provides the necessary safety features.
Conclusion – Shotgun Bike Seats for Kids
So, when choosing a shotgun bike seat for your child or a front-mounted bike seat, keep in mind that not every seat is created equal. Some may be more expensive than others, but they might not offer the same level of protection or durability.
Your choices may also be somewhat limited by the type of bike that you ride.
You’ll need to find the design that works best for you and your child. Although you won’t get a huge number of years of use out of this type of product, it’s essential if you’re a biking family and want your kids to enjoy the action that you have a comfortable seat that will let them safely join in.
If you’ve invested in the original Shotgun bike seat, here’s how you correctly install it:
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