Jogging prams, running buggies – call them what you will but they do exactly what they say on the tin and we’re getting loads of enquiries about them at DeWaldens Pram Centre. But it’s not just a matter of lacing up your trainers, popping baby in the buggy and heading out on your run unprepared.
Your very first consideration should be how to run safely with your running buggy from DeWaldens Pram Centre and that's exactly what we're about to fill you in on!
Can you run with a normal pram?
Let’s firstly answer a question that we get asked a lot at DeWaldens Pram Centre: can you run with a normal pram? The odd mini dash to catch the bus while you’re pushing your pram aside, it is not recommended that you use a standard pushchair or stroller for regular running.
Running buggies and jogging prams are match-fit and designed for the job and are therefore safer and easier to run with.
Speak to your doctor before you begin running with your buggy
Your body needs time to recover after giving birth so please speak to your doctor for the health all-clear before you begin running with your buggy or do any type of exercise for that matter. Pushing yourself too hard too soon is not the way to get fit.
Timescale-wise, it's usually six weeks for a standard birth and 12 weeks for a C-section. But this comes down to you and you alone can can vary from person to person which is why seeking medical advice is absolutely essential.
At what age can a baby safely go in a jogging buggy or pram?
The general advice around what age a baby can safely go in a jogging buggy or pram is six months, although received wisdom says that you might want to wait until they are around eight or nine months old to be on the safe side.
Your baby’s neck muscles need time to develop so that they’re strong enough to sit up in a pushchair, as well as handling the speed and the bumpier ride they might well experience while you’re out running.
Carrycots and car seats are a no-no for jogging and running
The British standard for pushchairs requires manufacturers to include a warning stating that you shouldn't run or jog with an infant in a car seat or carrycot.
You should avoid carrycots because they're almost always only suitable up to the age of six months, so your baby is still too young.
Car seats can hold your baby quite high on the chassis, altering the pushchair's centre of gravity.
Wrap up baby nice and warm
Your heart will be pumping and you’ll be glowing or sweating buckets depending on the intensity of your workout but baby is just sat there, so the general rule of thumb is to wrap them up in an extra layer over that which you would do were you out walking.
Ensure the pushchair seat is upright
Please make sure that it’s set in an upright position when you start running. This is the safest position for your toddler and the most stable position for the buggy when you’re pushing and running with it.
Benefits of running with your baby
Being outside can really boost your mental health. Heading out with your baby in the running buggy is a good place to start because it gets fresh air in your lungs.
No more worrying about leaving your child in the gym crèche while you workout, or leaving your partner to struggle alone with your other kids.
Neither will you have to carry your keys, wallet or phone stuffed into your pockets when you can pop them into the buggy's basket instead.
Jogging prams and running buggies are also a great healthy and greener alternative to taking them for a drive in the hope that the movement and thrum of the engine will send them off to sleep because it might have the same effects.
It might also be a useful exercise if your toddler has suddenly decided that they want to give up daytime naps!
Your running buggy key feature check list
Running buggies and jogging prams will often be marketed as ‘all terrain’ or in ‘off-road conditions’, like the Out n About Nipper Sport V4 Running Pushchair .
Here are some other key features to look out for, and remember that the wording may vary slightly depending on the make.
Handbrake or handlebar-operated brake
This will let you slow the pushchair down without having to break your stride.
Three wheelsThis gives the pushchair a slightly narrower or streamlined appearance, like the Thule Urban Glide 2 Jogging Stroller.
Lockable front wheel
This makes it easier to steer while running, especially over gravel or rough terrain.
This will help to absorb any bumps that you’re speeding over.
Large pneumatic or foam tyres
This type of tyre makes for a more comfortable ride than hard plastic wheels. Don’t forget to pack a puncture-repair kit with you if they're air tyres on your running buggy.
The handlebar needs to be far enough away so that you don’t kick the axle between the wheels when running, so an adjustable one is key.
Sturdy five-point harness
A vital feature to ensure your wee one stays securely in place while you’re travelling.
It’s also a good idea to invest in a wrist strap if the buggy doesn’t come with one supplied. It will keep you attached in case you lose your grip.