How to Buy a Great Sled for the Kids This Season
Kids love to play in the snow and a great sled can make wintertime even more enjoyable for them. Sleds don’t need to be fancy for them to be fun for children; even a large piece of cardboard can work on low hills! You don’t want your child to use a piece of cardboard as they don’t hold up well and aren’t safe, but the point is that you can find a very affordable sled they’ll love without needing to purchase anything too fancy or too expensive.
To choose the best sled for your child, first consider their age and size. You don’t want one that is too large for them to manage or to take back up the hill, and one that is too small won’t fit them very well and may not slide well with their weight.
There are any number of styles of sleds for children, including round saucers, toboggans which are flat plastic or wood sleds, and traditional sleds which are toboggans with runners underneath. A luge is a type of sled that requires the user to lie flat back and these are usually best for older children or adults. A catamaran is meant for two or more persons who stay seated while in motion; the seat is typically made of a springy material that allows the riders some movements while on the sled.
The amount of control your child needs may help to determine the type of sled you want to purchase. Traditional sleds have a slight steering mechanism on the front that allows children to move the runners as the sled is in motion. A child will lie flat on his or her stomach with hands on the runners. If your child loves tall hills this may be best since it allows for more control.
Round saucers and toboggans are virtually identical except that they need to sit and cross their legs in a round saucer; in a toboggan they sit upright with their legs stretched out, or can lie flat on their stomach. Both typically have handles on the sides to hold; these handles don’t give much control but just allow the child to hold on and stay on the sled while in motion.
All of these sleds come in a wide range of materials and will cost accordingly. A thin plastic saucer is probably the most affordable option, and plastic toboggans are typically the next most expensive. The thinner the plastic, the more affordable they are, but thin plastic may get indented and torn up more easily. On the other hand, thinner plastic means a more lightweight sled which is easier for your child to carry back up the hill. Keep all these factors in mind when shopping for a new sled for your child this winter.