Comfortable, easy to use, easy to adjust, and easy to love, the Polisport Guppy bike seat is one of our favorites. We especially love the rear pocket for easy storage of keys, phone, etc. Read the full review below for more reasons to buy the Guppy! (Generally only available in Europe.)
Pros & Cons
- Five-point harness
- Gentle suspension
- Recessed helmet pocket (for younger kids)
- UV resistant plastic
- Protective leg shields
- Doesn’t mount to bikes with frames with thick tubes
Polisport Guppy Bike Seat Review – Results of our Test Rides
Smart, safe, easy-to-use and durable, the Polisport Guppy is one of the best rear bike seats we’ve ever tested. Built with UV resistant plastics and a waterproof padded seat, the Guppy is fully equipped to take on the elements, while its mild suspension, recessed helmet pocket, full leg shields, and five-point harness make it a breeze to use.
Unfortunately, the Guppy is not widely available in the US, but for those in the UK, the Guppy is a budget-friendly alternative to the Thule Ridealong and the Hamax Caress. The Guppy does NOT recline like the Thule or Hamax, but performs great in various climates and has a five-point harness as compared to their three-point harnesses.
The seat is available with a rear frame or a rear rack mount, but besides the differences in mounting, the seats are the same.
Buckle and Harness
One of our favorite features of the Guppy is its five-point harness, which is very rare on child bike seats. The harness consists of five straps (two shoulder, two sides and one bottom) that come together in a child-safe buckle that requires two hands to push buttons to open.
The buckle also separates into three pieces – left, right and bottom. This buckle configuration allows for easy on-and-offs as the shoulder straps slide over the shoulders like a backpack, versus over their head which is standard on most seats.
As a comparison, the Thule Ridealong (which has been replaced by the Ridealong Lite) and the Hamax Caress both have three-point harness both require the shoulder straps to be pulled down over a child’s head in order to put it on.
To prevent the shoulder straps from slipping down on the Guppy, the upper portion has a soft, grippy, rubber sleeve. The sleeve works great, but it does make it a bit trickier to adjust the upper straps.
The shoulder straps have two height insertion points to further customize the fit. With our 18-month-old tester shown below we used the higher insertion point, but the lower insertion point (which you can see in the third picture below his shoulder), would have provided a better and safer fit.
Leg Shields and Footrest
Keeping a child’s legs away from the spokes of a tire is essential. The large leg shields on the Guppy prevent a child’s legs from getting anywhere close to the tire, while the foot straps secure their feet away from the tire while also preventing kids from kicking mom or dad! A height adjustable footrest easily moves up and down to provide a comfortable fit, while the slightly stretchy foot strap keeps wiggly feet in place.
Adjusting and using the Guppy’s footrests is very similar to Hamax and they are both easy to use, especially compared to Thule footrest strap which can be challenging to use.
Helmet Pocket, Padded Seats and Safety Strap
The Guppy features a recessed helmet pocket to prevent a child’s head from being uncomfortably pushed forward during a ride. The recessed pocket was the proper height for our 18-month-old tester, but is likely to be too low for older and taller kids. Like most bike seats, however, once a child is taller, their helmet will simply hang over the back of the Guppy’s seat, eliminating the need for a recessed helmet pocket at that point.
For additional comfort, the seats are waterproof and padded with a gel-like padding. In the third image below, you can see how my finger impression remains in the gel padding.
Lastly, for added peace-of-mind, the seat comes with a safety strap to provide a secondary point of attachment. This secondary strap is available on the Hamax Caress rack (carrier) mount, but not on the Thule Ridealong or the Hamax Caress frame mount.
Rear Storage Compartment
One of the coolest and most unique features of the Guppy is its rear storage compartment! It’s so useful for holding smaller items such as diapers, wipes, keys and smartphones.
Rear Frame Mounting Bracket
The rear frame mounted Guppy attaches to the bike via a mounting bracket. The bracket is pressure mounted onto the bike frame via four Allen bolts on the back of the bracket. Aligning the bracket on the frame is easy, but tightening the bolts can be tricky as the rear tire of the bike sits right behind the bracket.
To more easily mount the bracket, we recommend tightening the bolts about 80% with the bracket sideways on the frame, twisting the bracket into place, and then tightening the bolts completely.
To attach the Guppy seat to the bracket, the two mounting bars below the seat simply snap into the top of the bracket. When the bars are correctly inserted, two green circular tabs pop out on the front of the mounting bracket. To remove the seat, simply push down on the lower portion of the bracket and pull up on the seat.
This combination of a mounting bracket and bars is very similar to the systems found on the Thule Ridealong and the Hamax Caress frame mount. All three system are similar is ease-of-use and performance.
Once your rack (not included) is mounted to your bike, the rack-mounted Guppy is attached to the rack by simply tightening one knob. When tightened, the thick plastic mounts below the seat are brought together to clamp onto the sides of the rack. Once the teeth are tightly clamped to the rack, the teeth on the red safety ring on the knob prevent the seat from being becoming loose during a ride.
The mount also allows the seat to adhere to either the front or the back of the rack. While minor, moving the child a couple of inches towards the rider can help to balance out the weight on the bike.
BoBike City Adult Helmet
To facilitate this review, Polisport provided the Bobike child and adult City Helmets (Polisport is Bobike’s mother company). Both helmets provided a great fit, with plenty of ventilation, a dial-adjust internal cage, and durable in-mold construction. Both helmets can be found on Bobike’s site.
The Polisport Guppy is one of our hands-down favorite rear-mounted bike seats and is best suited for active families who need a durable seat that can withstand years of exposure to the elements. Built with UV-resistant plastic and waterproof seats, the Guppy is ready for action. Its five-point harness also offers amazing adjustability and security, while its unique rear storage compartment can be a lifesaver! Compared to other higher-end seats, the Guppy offers the most adjustability but does not recline. The Guppy is NOT widely available in the US.