Put that Stroller in Park

Put the Stroller in Park

This baby is small enough to face forward in what’s known as the “Buddha carry” with legs cris-crossed and pulled up toward the belly.

Giving up your stroller frees you from the hassle of collapsing it to put in your trunk, and eliminates the ever-present possibility of pinched fingers in those pesky joints.

Proponents of baby wearing know the closeness provided by this act is one you can’t duplicate by other forms of transport. Studies that show carried babies cry less than other babies aren’t restricted to babies in strollers vs. babies in carriers. The results show wearing your baby for three hours a day decreases the overall rate of crying.

Baby carriers promote a special bonding opportunity for mom and baby, as well as for dad and baby, and allow you the opportunity to keep doing the things you love with your baby right along with you. Here are five activities you may never have thought you could do with an infant—until you ditch the stroller.

  • Hiking/Walking. Hiking is great exercise and can help you fight the baby blues by getting some sunlight and getting your heart rate up and your blood pumping. Don’t try this with a stroller! Seek out trails with gentle elevations and even footing.
  • Clothes shopping. If you’ve ever tried to maneuver a stroller around any store except for the grocery store, you know it’s clumsy and awkward. Carrying baby also means you’re largely free from crying while you shop, since baby can feel and smell you. So strap baby on and go find a replacement for those maternity jeans.
  • Sporting events. Navigating a stadium with a stroller is close to impossible, and security regulations mean that you practically have to agree to a strip search to bring it in. Sporting events are great new-parent date nights because it’s noisy and there’s plenty of space to walk around if baby gets fussy.
  • Festivals. It’s really hard wheeling a stroller around festivals where there’s dirt or gravel, or street festivals where you may be constantly forced on and off the curb. These are great things to take baby to because he or she can nap in the carrier while you enjoy yourself. You can even walk around covertly nursing in the carrier when you get more experienced.
  • Sightseeing. When you’re on vacation, many older historical venues and national monuments can be tricky to navigate with a stroller. Be ready for anything by wearing baby so you can go anywhere and get the full experience.

New moms and dads can use carriers as a way to include dad in the bonding experience, and this helps create harmony within the family and confident parents.

When searching for a carrier, be sure to get one that fits and feels comfortable. You should try on several types of carriers to figure out which is best suited for your lifestyle, body type and baby’s temperament. So get moving, put that stroller in park, and swaddle your most precious possession close to your heart while you get out from behind the stroller and live!

Gretchen Latham is a mom of two who lives and writes in Oklahoma City. 

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