Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Get fit - and stay safe - walking and biking this summer

Posted July 23, 2020 8:00 p.m. EDT

Photo by Amber Faust on Unsplash

Editor's note: This article originally appeared on Poe Center for Health Education's website.

Kids need at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day – even in the summer. Physical activity is good for both physical and mental health, and walking and biking are two that are fun for the whole family!

But as you bike and walk around your neighborhood, it's important to follow safety guidelines. According to the N.C. Department of Transportation, approximately 16 child pedestrians and 3 child bicyclists under the age of 15 are involved in fatal crashes each year in North Carolina, and hundreds more are injured. We need to take pedestrian and bicycle safety seriously.

Poe’s Tips for Keeping Safe this Summer

While Walking

• Always walk on the left side, facing traffic.
• Wear bright colors so you can be seen easily.
• Crosswalk Safety:
  • A crosswalk is the safest spot to cross a street.
  • Look both ways before crossing the street.
  • Make eye contact with drivers before walking in front of them.
• Be Alert:
  • Remove headphones or earbuds so that you can hear traffic.
  • Avoid distractions like toys or phones.

While Biking

• Always wear a helmet.
• Ride with the flow of traffic and follow all traffic signs and signals.
• Wear bright colors so you can be seen easily.
• Be Alert:
  • Look both ways before crossing the street and when approaching driveways.
  • Remove headphones or earbuds.
  • Always use hand signals when you are turning or stopping.

What about COVID-19?

• The CDC recommends that adults and children continue to get physical activity and encourages walking as a part of your daily routine.
• Remember to practice social distancing. Keeping a safe distance of six feet from others can help reduce the spread of the coronavirus.
• If possible, wear face coverings in outdoor areas. More people are getting outside in parks and on greenways, and it is important to wear face coverings when social distancing is more difficult.