You definitely want a stroller. My little man loves to be outside and so do I. It’s good for you and your baby to take walks, both physically and definitely mentally! In this post, I’m going to review the two strollers I own: a BOB jogging stroller and a cheap, no-name umbrella stroller. Hopefully it will help you zero-in on what you want.
THE BOB (JOGGING STROLLER)
I never registered for baby shower gifts because I had no idea what to get. I knew I’d want to walk the baby, but the number of strollers on the market made my head hurt, so I avoided it.
Luckily, my mom and sister are thoughtful gift-givers, and they got this running enthusiast a BOB, which is a jogging stroller. My BOB is an Ironman Sport Utility Stroller with a fixed front wheel and an awesome suspension system. It glides down the road, rolling over cracks in the sidewalk and the occasional lazy gecko with ease. It’s like a three-wheeled bike. It has a hand break (like a bicycle) and a hood to keep sun off the little fellow. It’s easy to push, and I love it! But as with anything, it has its upsides and downsides.
- It is large. It does fold, but not that small, and simply will not fit in my MINI Cooper, so it stays at home. I wouldn’t want to push it around a store either because narrow aisles would be difficult.
- It is virtually impossible to put together because the directions are written in Martian. We took it to a sporting goods store (or try a bike shop), and they were successful. (They did it for free too!)
- The baby is in a semi-sitting position, so it’s recommended that you not actually run with the kid in there (too much bouncing) until he/she is about eight months old. Walking is fine after 8 weeks. It does recline but doesn’t lay flat.
- It gets hot in there, especially with the hood down. That’s probably more a function of my environment (90+ degree days all summer long), but he’s warm nonetheless.
- It’s expensive.
- No cup holder.
- It’s comfy. Or it seems comfy. I’ve never ridden in there. It’s not cushy-padded, it’s high-tech gear padded. Lots of shock absorbers and ergonomic seats.
- It’s got a storage area on the bottom that is awesome for lunch boxes, water, keys, cell phones, etc.
- The hood goes low for wind/sun coverage but can also be retracted and rolled up to better catch a breeze.
- The handlebar is a good height so you aren’t hunched over. I like it for walks because it glides well and is easy to take off road, like in the grass of a park. We even took him on a flat hiking trail in it.
- It’s relatively easy to wheel up or down stairs.
Note for the Runner
It’s easier to run without a baby. You can stand up straighter and swing both arms at the same time. You will go faster unencumbered. However, if you can’t ditch the kid (I mean, work out without your love muffin), it’s a nice way to squeeze in a jog. W loves to go on a walk and running lulls him into sleep every time (which has its own up- and down-sides). But the fact is, you have to push the stroller, which is surprisingly tiring, especially if it’s into the wind. You also have to have at least one hand on the handlebar, which means awkwardly swinging one arm at a time. Not that it’s BOB’s fault. It’s a bit rough on the shoulders. I do feel like I’m burning more calories though. (Note: the more you use it to run, the easier it will become.)
Bottom Line: My BOB is like my husband: hypothetically there could be others out there, but I like it too much to bother looking.
THE UMBRELLA STROLLER
What kind of umbrella stroller? Who cares? They are cheap, light-weight, narrow, and fold-able. You need one. You can get it for under $30.
- It will fit in any car (even a MINI).
- It will go down any aisle.
- It isn’t heavy.
- It’s kind of flimsy, which means it won’t over-heat the baby, and it folds nicely. If it breaks, no biggie. It was cheap in the first place.
You want one with wheels that turn in any direction, a small canopy to block (some) sun, and this is key?a pocket! You need a pocket for your keys, cell phone, and toys. The pocket is the only thing that distinguishes one from another.
Bottom line: You can?t live without it.
Q: What type of stroller do you have? What are its pros/cons?