We’ve done a whole lot of talking about baby strollers, the different types of baby strollers, different manufacturers, different features, but for the most part, we have focused on what is the best for the baby or toddler. But is that all you have to consider? No. Making sure a stroller is the perfect fit for your child is just part of the equation. What you also need to consider is how the stroller or carriage will fit you, or whoever will be pushing the baby. So let’s take some time and talk about some of the things you should factor into your decision.
The best thing to do is to start off with some simple questions. Once you’ve answered those, you have a solid basis to build on, and it should be easier for you to make a final decision.
- Who is the stroller for? Will you be pushing an infant or a toddler? Do you have more than one child that you would like to push at the same time?
- Who will be pushing the stroller? Father? Mother? An older sibling?
- Will the stroller only get occasional use, or will you be using in several times a day, every day?
- What kind of storage space do you have? And I don’t just mean storage space in your home, you need to consider what kind of storage space you have in your vehicle as well.
- What budget do you have to work within? Can you afford a high-end stroller with every available feature and option?
Once you’ve taken the time to answer those questions, coming to a final decision on a stroller that works for your child and for you should be a little easier. With such a huge selection to choose from, I have no doubt that anyone can find a stroller that’s the perfect fit for their lifestyle.
Let’s talk about a variety of features, and then briefly discuss how those features may or may not work with you, depending on your habits and lifestyle.
Height Adjustable Handles: Take into consideration the height of anyone who may spend a lot of time pushing your child in their stroller. If either parent, or a caregiver, is taller than the average person, choosing a stroller with height adjustable handles is the way to go. Spending any amount of time hunched over pushing a stroller, is just going to give you a backache.
Parent Trays: If you spend a lot of time walking with your baby, chances are there will be times when you don’t want to carry a purse, or you may not have pockets. Perhaps you like to take a travel mug with you. If so, make sure you choose a stroller that comes with a parent tray.
Large Storage Baskets: If you don’t have a car, or if you will be doing a lot of shopping while pushing your child, make sure you choose a stroller that has a large, easily accessible storage basket. Remember, you can’t hang bags — or anything for that matter — from the handles of your stroller. So instead of trying to juggle multiple bags, you can use the provided storage basket.
Jogging Strollers: if you’re a runner or a jogger, you can’t just jog with your baby using any old stroller. You need to choose a stroller that’s been designed and manufactured for this specific scenario. These are three wheeled strollers, and they typically have air inflated tires. They are also constructed in a manner that allows you the room for the longer stride that you would use when running or jogging.
All Terrain or Off Road Strollers: Perhaps you don’t run or jog like mentioned above, but you like to get out of the city and perhaps hike. Then you’re going to need a stroller that’s able to handle something more than your typical urban street. All terrain strollers are typically more heavy duty, with oversized, inflatable tires. And again, there are typically three of them. The air filled tires mean for a smoother ride, as does suspension.
One Hand Fold: If you are typically going to be alone when transferring your baby in and out of the stroller, you’re going to want the ease of a mechanism that will allow you to fold the stroller with just one hand.
The Weight of the Stroller: Along with the point above, if you are typically going to be by yourself when perhaps transferring the baby from stroller to car seat, you don’t want to have a stroller that is so heavy, you are not able to lift it into your vehicle to store.
Quick Release Tires/Compact Fold: If you’re not driving a minivan or a huge SUV, you need to take into consideration how much space you’re going to need to store your stroller. If you have limited space, make sure the stroller has the ability to be folded, or broken down to a manageable size, so that you can store it in the trunk of your smaller vehicle.
Double Strollers: If you have twins, or perhaps an infant and a toddler, you should likely be thinking of getting a double stroller. There are options of side by side double strollers, as well as tandem strollers. You can even find double strollers that allow you to individually adjust each seat.
Umbrella Strollers: umbrella strollers are typically not suitable for infants, but if you are often using public transportation or only need to push your child for very short distances, and umbrella stroller is a great option. Due to their small size and light weight, they’re great for getting on and off of a bus, or any other form of public transportation.