Baby Strollers - So Many Choices, Which Stroller is Right for my Baby?
Gone are the days when mothers of young children had bulging arm muscles thanks to pushing around heavy, unwieldy baby carriages and prams. That's not to say that today's highly maneuverable, lightweight strollers have reduced fitness levels in early motherhood (or fatherhood) - in fact, many modern baby strollers are specifically designed to keep your infant comfortable and secure while you're exercising and keeping fit!
Strollers are something that most mothers consider essential items, particularly once an infant is too heavy for a carrier, if not before.
Making the right choice for you and your child requires you to do your homework and know the important things to check when shopping for a stroller.
Good Baby Stroller Essentials
Safety - All good stroller brands have a safety harness system to keep your baby in the stroller chair whether you're moving fast or slow. A good brake system is also required to safely secure the stroller in one place when you stop.
Weather protection - While it's possible to buy simple (and possibly cheaper) strollers without fancy weather proof additions, an umbrella stroller, with a built-in (and often detachable) hood protects your child from the elements, including strong sunshine in summer. You also need to buy some appropriate outdoor baby clothes - the more extreme the weather in your area, the more important these will be.
Weight and collapsibility - Baby stroller manufacturers aim to produce lightweight strollers that are easily folded and carried when not in use. Many strollers come with a special shoulder strap. Think about your own physical strength when choosing a stroller - remember that you may be carrying shopping and other items in the stroller as well as your baby. If you have to climb stairs to enter your home, you'll need an easily collapsible stroller. There are strollers that are light enough to carry over one shoulder while you take your baby in your other arm (but be careful of course!).
Adjustability - most modern strollers allow you to move your child's seat forward and back (i.e. to recline it when she is sleeping), and sometimes up and down too. Some strollers allow you to switch the position of the stroller seat to have your child either facing you, or facing out.
Double strollers - for parents of twins or parents of a small child with an even smaller little brother or sister, double strollers are a lifeline. Modern technology has come so far that even these come in lightweight designs that are easy to move around. Triple strollers are available too.
Wheel systems - who says that a stroller has to have four sets of wheels? That's right, the three-wheel system is here. Producers of three-wheel jogging strollers in particular say that the three-wheel stroller is much easier to handle (at increased speeds) and to move around corners, etc. Three-wheel systems are safe, of course, but some mothers and fathers find that they feel a little insecure without that sturdy, four-wheel system.
Jogging Stroller Systems
When deciding which stroller system is best for you, you have to consider your lifestyle and routine. If you're interested in keeping fit (and to be honest, with young kids around, you're not going to have much choice) a jogging stroller might be just the thing.
These new fitness strollers are becoming more and more popular, and Dads and Moms can now be spotted running around parks with their kids safely and happily secured in stylish and speedy strollers.
Strollers to use while jogging are generally three-wheel systems, and come as single passenger and double strollers, with all the weather protection features of a regular street or city stroller. The wheels on a this type of stroller are larger, to allow you to do greater speeds. Some strollers even come with a fitted speedometer, so you can tell how fast you're going.
Travel strollers are a welcome aid to many parents on the move with young babies. If you travel a lot, either by bus, air or rail, this type of stroller makes transporting your baby safer and easier. The seat in a travel stroller doubles up as a baby car seat, which simply snaps in and out of the collapsible stroller frame, whenever you need it. The car seat can also be brought onto a plane to secure an infant during a flight.
Strollers can be bought in baby equipment stores everywhere and from online stores. As is the case with most things related to motherhood, the best people to ask for stroller advice are mothers (and fathers, of course) who use them every day. Why not get some recommendations from friends, or on an online baby care forum, before you make your purchase? You can also check out reveiw sites like www.babyproduct-reviews.com to hear what other parents have to say about specific baby strollers.