If you're an expecting parent, you may be wondering what baby stroller to get for your baby. Different kinds of baby strollers are available in the market today. Some are high-end and expensive, while others are more affordable and less elaborate. The thought of purchasing a stroller can be daunting, but this baby stroller guide is here to help.
How to Choose a Baby Stroller
Choosing a baby stroller isn't a decision that should be rushed. There are many things to consider while making this choice, like:
- Features and accessories. Some strollers come with extras like cup holders and phone holders, while others have more storage space or larger wheels. Consider what features are most important to you before making a decision.
- Terrain. The terrain you'll be pushing the stroller over will decide what type of wheels you need on your stroller.
- Budget. Before you even start looking at strollers, decide how much you're willing to spend. Setting a budget will help narrow your choices and keep you from getting in over your head.
- Age of child. If you have a newborn or an infant who needs a car seat attached to the baby stroller frame, look for an option that securely holds the car seat in place. If you have an older baby or toddler who sits up on his own, you have more options like size and weight.
- Baby stroller age. The newer the stroller, the more confident you'll be about their condition and safety.
Types of Baby Strollers on the Market
Some brands specialize in one category, while others offer them all. So, it's essential to understand the different types of strollers available before choosing one.
Lightweight umbrella strollers. Such a stroller weighs just a few pounds so you move it easily. But, most of them don't have features like storage bins and sunshades. They also may not have suspension on their wheels or have full recliner seats, which means they may not be suitable for very young babies.
Convertible or multifunctional strollers. Some baby strollers can transform from a single stroller into a double stroller. Convertible strollers have many great benefits — they grow with your family and save you money in the long run.
Jogging strollers. Jogging strollers are different from traditional strollers in that they're made to be pushed at a faster pace. They have features — like swivel wheels, pneumatic tires, and hand brakes — which make them easier to push while running.
Twin and double strollers. A double stroller is probably your best bet when you have two children. It's an excellent option for children who're comfortable sitting next to each other. The seats are usually similar in size and placed side by side, which allows your babies to interact easily.
Full-size standard strollers. If your stroller is for everyday use, you'll want a full-sized, standard stroller. Full-sized strollers tend to come with more features and accessories than other strollers. They're designed to hold up to years of daily use and accommodate children of all sizes — from newborns through preschoolers.
Baby Stroller Guide
Here are a few desirable features of a good baby stroller:
Undercarriage basket. An undercarriage basket is an important feature of any stroller. It's where you'll store items like diapers and wipes, toys, and snacks when you're on the go with your child. A large undercarriage basket will allow you to bring everything you need for a day out.
Safety harness. Any stroller you buy should have a safety harness to prevent your child from falling out. These come in many different styles ranging from three-point harnesses that go over your child's shoulders and waist to five-point harnesses that also go around each leg.
Car seat adaptability. Newborns can't sit up independently, so they need to lie flat or be propped up in a semi-reclined position. Look for a car seat or stroller combo that allows your child to lie flat or be upright, especially if you're buying something that can take your child from infancy through toddlerhood.
Weight capacity. The weight limits vary by the manufacturer, so check them carefully before you buy. Some strollers can even hold kids up to 65 pounds, which is good if you want to use the same stroller until your child is five years old or more.
Handlebars. Make sure the handlebar is comfortable to grip as you push the stroller. The handlebar should be positioned so that you don't have to lean over too far. Consider purchasing a stroller with an adjustable handlebar so that you can adjust it to the appropriate height for your comfort.
Baby Stroller Safety Tips
Take every precaution when it comes to using baby strollers. Here's a list of baby stroller safety tips that'll help you ensure your baby has a great ride in the comfort of their stroller:
- Carefully check all the parts of the stroller. Make sure the brakes work correctly and that any locks are secure. Also, check for any missing or loose screws or bolts.
- Make sure that you can use your hands to break quickly if necessary. If you find it difficult to break or put your feet down on each side of the stroller when going downhill, you need to adjust the handlebars.
- Use the restraint system every time — even if you're going across the street. Babies may wiggle out of a harness that's not securely fastened.
- Avoid overloading your stroller with too many things — like shopping bags, diaper bags, and purses — making it more challenging to push and control. Keep extra items off the handles where they could interfere with pushing and steering the stroller.
- Don't leave a stroller on stairs, near water, or unsupervised in the sun. Don't hang bags from the handlebars because it can throw off the balance of the stroller and put your child at risk for injury.
- Buckle up your child. Always strap kids in when they're sitting in a stroller, and make sure the straps are snug.
- Keep babies safe in slings where they are secure and close to you but not covered by clothing or a loose fabric from the sling itself, which could suffocate them if it covers their face and they cannot move it away.
In the end, finding the best stroller for your child will be about what works for you. Indeed, some models are probably better than others, but that's not to say that you can't find a great model at a lower price tier. And if the price isn't the deciding factor for you, go all out and spend hundreds of dollars on the latest and greatest.