A lightweight, inexpensive, and convenient baby stroller, the umbrella stroller is perfect for your occasional strolling needs. Many varieties of umbrella strollers are available on the market, and many of them are simple and cost less than $30 USD. Though these strollers may not able to fulfil all of one’s strolling needs, they are certainly adequate if you know what you want.
There is often a misunderstanding that umbrella strollers are meant for infants when they aren’t. This is due to the fact that most strollers do not recline far enough for infants to lie completely flat. If a baby is required to hold up his/her own head to keep steady, umbrella strollers will not provide enough support for their developing muscles. However, once they reach six to nine months of age, then this will not be as much of an issue if at all.
The greatest advantage of an umbrella stroller is that they can fold up very easily for storage and they are extremely light. So whether or not you’re keeping it stored around the house, or you’re outside pushing it around, it will not be a burden to you. In fact, most models weigh less than 10 pounds (4.54 kg) and include a light metal frame with a simple cloth seat. They’re great if you’re strolling a toddler or a baby for a brief period of time, and then carrying it around for the rest of the day. Additionally, when folded they fit well in car trunks, or tight closet space. Due to how light they are, getting on public transportation will be less of an issue.
Yet another benefit of an umbrella stroller is how maneuverable they are which is great for crowded spaces. For instance, if you are planning on visiting amusement parks, or state fairs, in busy streets or similar situations, this type of stroller will reduce the chances of you running into people and vice versa. Unfortunately these strollers aren’t made for jogging, and they may not work as effectively if you seat a heavy toddler in them. As such, children that have gotten heavier may negate the added maneuverability these models ought to have.
Things to keep in mind
When selecting one to buy, very basic models are available but it wouldn’t hurt to get one with more features if you feel you need them. For instance, you can buy strollers that include an overhead cover for some added protection from the sun’s harsh UV rays for your babies. Another useful feature is a pocket or storage area on the stroller so that you can keep some items handy without carrying it by hand or in another bag.
The most basic models may not be ideal for taller parents because the handles are not always adjustable and can cause back or shoulder ache after prolonged use. If you are taller, find a stroller that has handle attachments that will provide a comfortable position at about waist level for when you stroll. Otherwise, try to find a model that sports adjustable handles in the first place.
Lastly, keep in mind that these strollers can tip over if you apply too much weight on the handles. As such, it would be wise to keep a constant watch on babies; never let them out of your sight. Be on watch for other children (perhaps siblings) pulling the stroller back. One disadvantage of the umbrella stroller is that due to its light weight, it is at a higher risk of toppling over. For added safety, look for strollers that feature a five point harness strap as opposed to only waist straps. These are way more secure, and will keep your baby secured in place if the stroller were to tip over.
Having a tough time deciding on the perfect stroller for you? Check out our review for some ideas.