Safety should be the first priority on any parent’s list when it comes to choosing products that will be used for children. Jogging strollers are a great way to get the whole family involved in health and exercise and can start in the early stages of childhood if a parent knows how. Since not all strollers are created equal, it is essential for parents to pay attention to what they are buying long before they buy it. Some parents have no idea what the difference is between a regular stroller and a jogging stroller, so we have come up with a few guide tips to ensure you as the parent make the very best choice for your family.
Safety: What to Look For
Parents are the sole decision makers in what stroller is bought and included in their exercise routine. Wheels, harness, hand strap, hand brake, and suspension are all extremely important. When choosing a proper and safe jogging stroller, here are some tips on what to look for.
- Wheels – What type of wheels are best used for jogging, does it swivel or is it a fixed front. Are the tires forever air, or inflatable. Most stroller wheels are not meant to be used for jogging and using a stroller with those wheels is automatically a safety issue. When a swivel wheel locks in place it is safer on rough terrain.Most advice would say do not get a swivel wheel at all, but instead go with one that is strictly stationary.
- Harness – Five point harnesses usually come with any stroller, but it is especially important for safety in terms of rough terrain and faster moving. At no point should a stroller come without proper seat belts. Also, should the seat belts come without shoulder straps, this is unsafe for jogging. A child could fall forward and out of a lap belt.
- Hand strap and Break – Safety straps that go around the wrist ensure the stroller does not begin to roll should the breaks fail, however a hand break is also highly important to slow the stroller down when it is moving faster than you would like it to. Both of these combined are extremely important to the jogging scenario and help when going downhill, or uphill.
- Suspension – Suspension not only helps with the comfort of the child with less jostling, but helps the stroller go across rough terrain without tipping, flipping, or stopping quickly.Shocks also help with this because they absorb rough hits to the stroller.
What Parent Can Do to Ensure Safety
Although strollers should come prepared with everything you need to keep your child safe while you jog, depending on that to be perfect is a fault in parents everywhere. When a parent makes a purchase, they don’t expect to find broken pieces, or missing parts, and usually they do not read the instructions. It is the parent’s responsibility to make sure nothing was missed during the making of the stroller just in case. Here are some tips on how you, as a parent can ensure safety while buying or using your jogging stroller.
- Set Brakes – Always make sure the breaks are set completely before moving even a few feet from a stroller; the last thing you want is to have the stroller run off with your little one in it. Also, do not always trust the brakes, they are not infallible.
- Always Buckle Children Securely – Never leave a child without their safety harness on, all five points. If a child does not have the shoulder straps, they could possibly fall out and over the bottom seat buckle straps.
- Check Placement of Diaper Bags and Purses – Sometimes a parent will place the diaper bag or purse in a hanging position on the handlebar of the stroller; this can cause tipping if the weight of the front of the stroller is less than the back. Do not let your child be tipped over because of a bad bag placement that is what storage areas are for.
- Read all the Reviews–read as many reviews from different parents as you can, it is easier to look at the reviews and make a more responsible decision about the stroller in question.
- Keep the Stroller Near – Just like a shopping cart, never leave your child unattended in a stroller or too far from you that if it starts to roll, tip, or fold you are unable to stop it immediately.
- Watch for Broken Pieces – Before putting your little one in the stroller, and after here and there watch for pieces that are broken or worn down, when you do this, you are less likely to be surprised if something snaps and breaks.
What are ASTM and JPMA?
ASTM which used to be known as American Society for Testing and Materials is a company that has set many of the standards for safety on strollers worldwide. If a stroller does not meet the standards of the ASTM it is a good bet that stroller will not be worth purchasing.
The JPMA is short for Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association. The JPMA also have standards and if a stroller is JPMA certified that means it has undergone extensive testing to ensure top safety. Watch for these signs of safety approval before purchasing.
These two companies will not certify a product if these basic standards are not met:
- Attached safety harness either to frame or upholstery.
- Equipment that prevents unexpected collapsing while the stroller is being used.
- Nothing that could hurt your child in any ways such as a coil spring.
- Warning signs on different areas of the stroller.
- A device that ensures stability even when stroller is placed facing up or down a hill.
All the strollers that we recommend are complaint with the toughest safety standards. We hope that information that we provide can make it easier for you to find and buy the perfect jogging stroller for your family and for your budget.