Being prepared is better than being in the dark – “Forewarned is Forearmed”.
A simple list that guides you through the purchase of a jogging stroller:
Jogging stroller CHECK LIST
Things to consider: Yes (Y) No (N)
Is a brand name important? Y
Are accessories, such as a cup holder, in-built mp3 crucial ? N
An aluminum frame? Y
Three large fixed wheels? Y
An under seat basket? Y
Roomy baby seat? Y
Does it have to recline? Y
Hand brake? Y
Safety leash? Y
Air filled tires? Y
Think About It
A simple construction – less plastic joints Y
Is it important to be easy to manoeuvre? N
Is it important to be lightweight? Y
Do I need a swivel wheel? N
Does the front wheel have to be fixed? Y
Shall I be able to fold it with one hand? N
Two hands easy fold? Y
Additional storage space – backseat net, large underbasket Y
Am I comfortable with the height of the handle? Y
Should the handle be adjustable? Y and N
Shock absorbers? Y and N
Reflective tape on the canopy? Y
Do I have to like my jogging stroller? YYY
Heavily addicted jogging stroller user’s advice
Best running stroller calls you out for the run and is a home for your child.
Your comfort, safety and reliability are the most important factors. Don’t overpay for a brand name, as it will not affect the quality and your running comfort. The ideal one should be simple in construction, lightweight and stable.
Capability doesn’t mean real space for a child:
A stroller with impressive capability of 75lbs might be short for 2 years old. Check the real seat’s height and width. The models with a highly curved canopy roof offer more space for a child.
Stroller seat – roomy and reclining
The roomy reclining seat for a baby is a must. Check the recline angle; make sure there is enough space for the legs in all positions.
Long legs drop is a good feature to have and it may be used longer.
Wheels and Tires – fixed and air filled
Don’t expect your jogging stroller to be super- maneuvering. It should be stable and easy rolling. Choose a fixed front wheel over a swivel, if you’re serious about sports.
Tires need to be inflated same pressure, make sure to check the pressure from time to time to avoid veering.
Handles that suit your height
Adjustable or not-adjustable is a matter of taste and luck: if a fixed stroller’s handle perfectly suits you, congratulations.
Keep in mind: the taller you are the higher handle you need. Make sure you can grip it nicely with the 90 degrees angle in your bended elbow.
Fixed Wheel over Swivel
Running means speed. Speed means risk. When it is risky, you want everything to be double-checked and double-fixed. Last think I want when rollerblading with a stroller is to think: “What if the front wheel goes unlocked”? Even if you’re just running, a swivel wheel increases a risk of the wrong alignment.
Go for the fixed front wheel. No compromises!
Canopy – spacious, with generous sunshade
Highly curved roof ensures more space below it. It is beneficial for bigger kids. Some models allow unfastening the canopy from the back and pulling it forward almost to the edge to customize the shadow.
Shock Absorbers – nice to have but not vital
You need shocks mostly in two cases: firstly, when you’re rollerblading with a tiny baby (which I don’t recommend anyway, but still I know how much it’s tempting) and secondly, when you’re running/walking on the paved trials with rough terrain.
If your daily routes are smooth asphalted terrains, shock absorbers are just nice-to-have thing.
Accessories: no frills but real life
Sacrifice all unnecessary but cute accessories; they are excess, but very tempting in a shop, e.g. a stroller’s umbrella or a cup holder.
Pay real attention to a spacious basket and quality rain cover. Still, most of the real life stroller accessories, such as a weather shield, pocket pump, bike bell, cup holders, and headlight can be bought separately.
Test Drive is a GOOD thing
You need to try your future stroller, push and hold it and put your child inside to see how comfy he is.
While a test drive, check how well it rolls (try to push it with just one finger) and what balance and road adherence are (push an empty stroller away from you and see if the stroller rolls straight).
Hang a bag of 11lb on the handle and see if it remains standing still and performs no overturn.
My advice is to fall in love with a proper jogging stroller and get started running with your baby!
Elena Filatova has done more than 5000 miles walking with the baby stroller while being a mom of her little boy. Weight Loss Walking, Rollerblading with the Stroller and Invisible Fitness on the Go made her slim and fit – and gave an idea for a life changing Strollnetics Fitness Blog for the sporty moms Walkingmama.