A stroller certainly falls under must-have items for new parents. Let’s face it: you’ll probably need a stroller first before you even think of buying shoes for your baby! But which type do you pick between jogging stroller vs regular? Or, jogging stroller vs travel system? Let me help you pick the right one as an avid jogger myself together with my family.
Strolling in Style
Sadly, picking a stroller isn’t as straightforward as we’d like to believe. Otherwise we really wouldn’t be having this discussion, right? You need to make a decision based on facts. You have to know the differences between the different types, how each type fares against the other, and what your lifestyle demands. Only then can you pick the right stroller for your needs. And that’s where this brief guide comes in. To give you all the information you need to make the right decision. Let’s get right into it!
The Different Types of Strollers
We get that strollers serve the same purpose. They are basically meant to transport your child from point A to Z. But that certainly doesn’t mean that they are all the same. There are different types of strollers on the market. And the differences are largely rooted in the mechanisms and intended function as I’ll reveal below:
- Jogging Stroller – This stroller is specifically designed for jogging with your baby in mind.
- Regular Stroller – A regular stroller is just that — regular. It’s the most basic form of stroller that serves to move your child from one point to the next. Parents who just want a stroller they can use to take a stroll down the park with their little ones are usually drawn to this design.
- Travel System – You’ll agree that the name alone makes the stroller sounds fancy. But that’s exactly what it is — a system. The product combines an infant car seat and stroller in one. The car seat attaches to your stroller. You can also easily detach it and place it in your car.
- Double Stroller – Do you have twins? You’ll need a double stroller that’s designed to accommodate two babies. Depending on the product you pick, it can either offer side-by-side seating or one kid sits behind the other.
- Car seat carrier – This product basically transforms from a car seat into a stroller. It is the very definition of convenient!
Comparing Jogging Stroller vs Regular vs Travel System Stroller
Now we move on to the differences between a jogging stroller, regular stroller, and travel system stroller. We’ll also highlight the pros and cons of each type to help you ascertain which type is right for you.
The name says it all. Jogging strollers are designed with running parents in mind. Most jogging strollers feature only three wheels and this design optimizes the stroller for running. They usually have bigger wheels compared to regular strollers. And they have a front-wheel which can either swivel for maximum maneuverability or is fixed to offer stability when running at high speeds. If you’re a visual learning who wants to learn a couple of handy health tips for running with a stroller be sure to watch this video.
- Perfect for running or jogging
- Superior suspension that can navigate most platforms
- Usually come with deep seats which often recline
- Are mostly compatible with car seats
- Ideal for most terrains
- Can be lightweight depending on the model you pick
- Usually difficult to assemble
- May be challenging to fold
- Not space savers
The differentiating feature with regular strollers compared to jogging strollers is that they usually feature four wheels instead of three. The suspension isn’t as robust as that which is found in jogging strollers. However, this will depend on the brand you pick. Certain brands incorporate sophisticated suspensions on their strollers. The idea behind this is to ensure that your kid rides in absolute comfort.
- Extremely durable
- Feature wide, comfortable padded seats
- Certain models allow you the option to attach a car seat to the stroller
- Designed to grow with your baby if you purchase a convertible design
- Not for jogging or running
- Better suited for flat terrains only
- Usually bulky and heavy too since they feature all sorts of bells and whistles
- Difficult to fit in tight spaces
Unlike a jogging stroller or regular stroller that only comes as a stroller, manufacturers of travel systems throw a car seat into the mix. This essentially means that you get the best of both worlds: an infant seat and a stroller. You’ll agree that this makes it a pretty versatile and convenient product especially for parents that are on the fence regarding whether to buy a regular car seat or a stroller. You simply need to decide if you want a travel system that acts as a regular or jogging stroller. Or even both depending on your needs.
- Allows you to transfer your little one to the car without waking them up
- Saves you money in the long run since you buy both a car seat and stroller
- Mostly designed to grow with your baby
- Your child usually outgrows the infant seat fast rendering it useless after a couple of months
- You’ll need to buy a separate car seat base if you have more than one car
- The initial cost is usually pricy
- Bulky and difficult to handle since it comes with both a car seat and stroller
How to Pick the Right Stroller for Your Needs
You know the different types, now you need to figure out how to pick the right one for your needs. Consider the following factors:
- Intended use: The first thing you obviously need to consider is what you want to use the stroller for. Is it just for taking a stroll in the park, moving around the town, or taking your baby with you for a jog? A regular stroller or standard travel system is ideal for regular walking.
- Lifestyle: Are you and your wife fitness enthusiasts? Maybe your wife is planning on getting fit after soon after giving birth? A jogging stroller is your best bet in this case. Do you plan on going hiking with your baby? Again, a jogging stroller is ideal.
- Space: Do you have a spacious apartment? If not, you may be forced to settle for a space-saving option and pick a streamlined model like the Baby Jogger City Mini GT Stroller. Pick one that’s easy to fold and store out of the way when not in use. The Baby Jogger Summit X3 Jogging Stroller is the perfect example that features a quick fold technology. You can afford to pick a bulky model if you have plenty of room in your nursery.
- Size of your car: Along with the size of your apartment, you’ll need to consider the size of your car. Naturally if you have a smaller car, then you’ll need a streamlined model and the opposite applies.
- Weight: You’ll need to consider the weight of the stroller. It’ll determine whether handling the unit is easy or not. Heavy and bulky strollers are difficult to lug around. This is something you should seriously consider if you live on the third floor and have to climb stairs frequently like I do. Or, if you have to use public transport and constantly navigate busy streets or stores. The Thule Urban Glide 2 Jogging Stroller, Joovy Zoom 360 Ultralight Jogging Stroller and Baby Jogger City Mini GT Stroller are perfect examples of lightweight strollers that allow for easy handling.
- Baby’s comfort: We get that you want a stroller that allows for easy handling and is suitable for your needs but let’s not forget where your little one fits in all this. Make sure you purchase a stroller that’s designed with your baby’s comfort in mind. Pick a stroller with wide, padded, and comfortable seats. Also, make sure it offers multiple reclining positions to match your little one’s stage of growth. The Chicco Cortina CX Travel System Iron is the perfect example of such a stroller as it features a total of eight reclining positions.
- Other features: While you’re at it, consider if it comes with other useful extras such as a storage basket, cup-holder, tray, or canopy for protection against the sun’s rays. The Chicco Bravo Trio Travel System Orion is a great example that comes with all these features. Just remember that the more features the stroller have, the bulkier it’s likely to be AND the heftier its price tag will be. So, weigh your options accordingly.
At what age can a baby start using a stroller?
This will depend on the model you pick so always pay attention to the manufacturer’s guidelines. The Doona Infant Car Seat and Latch Base is perfect for newborns since it can accommodate babies that weigh as little as 4lb. But for most parents, they usually start pushing their little ones in strollers around the six month mark.
Can newborns use strollers?
Again, this will depend on the stroller in question. If you do have to use a stroller for your newborn, make sure that it fully reclines since newborns can’t sit up.
Can strollers cause shaken baby syndrome?
While a slightly bumpy stroller ride won’t cause shaken baby syndrome, it can be pretty uncomfortable for your child. Be sure to pick a stroller with a solid suspension.
Given a choice between the models listed above, I’d go with the Thule Urban Glide 2 Jogging Stroller. Why? I like that it’s a light streamlined model that does the job it was designed to do. You can use it as either a jogging stroller OR a regular stroller so you don’t have to make the difficult decision. It features a solid suspension to guarantee your child a smooth ride. Plus, it’s lightweight for easy handling, simple to fold and can navigate all terrains. Your child is comfortable thanks to the wide padded reclining seat. You’ll be comfortable pushing your child thanks to the ergonomic handlebar. It’s a win-win.