The importance of a buying baby carrier that fits
I use the analogy of baby carriers and slings being like shoes an awful lot, and I’m realising that there’s even more to the comparison than I first thought….
Good fit makes them comfortable & supportive
Carriers are like shoes – they need to fit you and your baby well in order to be comfortable, supportive and safe to use. A well-fitting sling or carrier will support your baby’s weight close to your centre of gravity, evenly distributing it so that you don’t feel pressure or the need to adjust your posture to compensate for their weight.
Just like shoes that hurt your feet, an uncomfortable sling tells you that it’s either the wrong shape or size for you or your child, or that it’s not properly fitted. It may even be a sign that the carrier isn’t supporting your baby safely.
You ‘need’ more than one pair of shoes
There’s now a huge range of safe, comfortable slings and baby carriers on the market to suit every shape, size and budget. It may be difficult choosing between all the different options, but do you actually ‘need’ more than one carrier?
Well, maybe not, but a newborn baby is very different to a 6 month old, or a 12 month old, or a 2 year old… and different sizes or types of carrier may suit best at different stages. The same applies to most baby products… car seats, cots, baths, toys, clothes, shoes…!
Like shoes, the style of carrier that works when your baby is very young will change as their needs, strength and abilities change and grow. Like shoes, you may well find that you end up owning multiple carriers by the time you finish carrying your children.
Different things work better for different situations
You wouldn’t wear wellies to the beach or to a wedding party, just as you wouldn’t wear flip flops to the office or when walking in the snow. Different shoes for different jobs; and it’s easy to find new situations where a different pair would offer better support, comfort and functionality (or even make the louder fashion statement). All of this is exactly the same as for baby carriers.
Early on parents may favour a soft stretchy wrap that supports their cuddly newborn snugly on their front. Later you might want a supportive multi-way carrier for long walks or holidays, or when carrying for longer periods like nap-times. You might want a quick and easy sling to pop your bigger baby in so they can sit on your hip while you get your hands free to cook the dinner. And you don’t want a chunky backpack carrier when you’re trying to look your best for a special occasion; a gorgeous patterned wrap or ring sling can make carrying your baby look stylish as well as being super practical!
They can be addictive!
With so many attractive and comfortable options out there, slings can be addictive, with some mums buying dozens (I told you they were like shoes)!
But you really don’t need that many, especially when it’s easy to hire a carrier from a Sling Library and get a chance to try them out for yourself before buying the right sling (or slings) for you…
… now if only there was a Shoe Library too!