New dad: Should I rock the pump?


I’m a 40 year old father of a two-week-old girl. I haven’t been on a dirt jump / pump track since I was 14. Now that you’ve built the new Lyons funhouse, I’m thinking about a steel P.1 for sale in Boulder. It’s $500 and in good shape. I think you know the bloak selling it.

1) Should I drop the $500 (in light of my recent fatherhood/life changes)?
2) Why?

Thanks (for your advice and for your work in Lyons!)


Hey Dave,

Awesome question, especially in the new-dad context.

Assuming you have the financial means and spousal support, yeah man, go for it.

Some reasons:

– A $500 P.1 is one of the best deals in mountain biking. Unparalleled dollar-to-fun ratio. Readily accepts a baby trailer.

– With your new baby, you won’t have a ton of time (or perhaps inclination) to escape on long XC adventures. Playing in a park like Lyons is like taking the highlights of an XC ride and boiling them down to one acre and 30 minutes.

– Training for XC fitness requires time and energy you won’t have. Shift your focus to skills. Riding pump tracks and safely built jumps, especially on a sweet DJ hardtail, is the fast track to skills enhancement. And you know what else? Fitness is transitory. Skills are forever.

– You can still stay in great bike shape. Try 100 laps on the pump track. Probably the most inclusive bike-specific workout you can do. Add some sprints and short hill intervals, and you’ll be ready for anything.

– Pump tracks are the new horseshoes. (That’s a Mark Weirism.) Everyone is in one spot, hanging out together. At the Lyons Bike Park I see lots of dads with their families. You read it here first: Pump tracks will save the American family.

BTW: I propose a Daddy Loves Pumptracks co-op. We all meet at the park and take turns riding and watching kids. Pin it for a minute, watch kids for three minutes, repeat!

– It will be at least a decade (if ever) until your girl wants to crank out long road and XC rides. But chances are she’ll be ripping the pump track in just a few years. Kids are all about the play-based riding. What a fun, healthy activity — and one you can do together! She might progress into BMX or mountain biking — or not. Either way, you two can enjoy riding together.

And let’s not forget: This will be really fun. Go for it!

— Lee

BTW: The Twins are at 22 weeks and already so fully pinned it’s hard to get ultrasounds. Mini braaap braaap!!!

Know more. Have more fun!

Join the leelikesbikes mailing list:

4 replies
  1. MW says:

    You came on a “Lee likes bikes” and asked if you should buy his favorite model in his quiver…..What did you expect him to say ? 🙂 As a father of two, I spend more time on my DJ/hardtail bike then anything else, its my release, if only for a short ride to the post office, it shakes the shoulders out. Now I spend hours on our pumptrack with the boys(2 and 5) and its a better high than the starting gate of a National.

  2. zach says:

    I too am a father of 2 (5 & 8 ) and let me tell you there is nothing better then going out pump tracking and rocking it with the little ones (especially if you put one in the backyard). You will also enjoy the fact that while you are burning laps you can keep your eye on the little one the whole time which is a huge piece of mind. Get a bike for pump and let the good times roll. Lee I love your train of thought on the rad dads baby sitting club, count me in.

    Happy Pumping

  3. Sacha says:

    You guys are making it so I don’t wanna sell her. Diane swears I’ll want a new one in six weeks. Probably true, but for now climbing trumps and there’s only so much time. Bouldering it turns out is a close second to the pump track for kid friendly sport. Lee let’s hang out soon… head down to the fix for a little pump track play. Can I borrow a bike? 🙁 🙂

Comments are closed.