View Full Version : I'm breaking my back!! Recommendations please...

09-29-2003, 02:53 PM
DD and I have gone to swim class twice now and I definitely need to figure out a better system. Here's what happens...

I wear a big backpack with all of our gear. Then I strap DD to my chest in the Baby Bjorn. At almost 20 lbs. she's way to heavy for me to carry that way so I keep her in there only long enough to get our lightweight stroller on a bus. I must have her strapped to me on the bus because there's no other way I can keep both her and the stroller under control on the moving, crowded bus. By the time we get off, my shoulders and back ache so much I feel nauseous! I recover somewhat after I can unload DD into the stroller for the remaining few blocks we have to walk to the class but by the time we get there I almost feel like the whole trip wasn't worth it. And then I have to do it all over again on the way back;(. Last week I walked an extra mile home just to avoid the bus but that won't be as easy when the weather gets colder.

I'm thinking that a sling might be a better way to carry her, but maybe anything would be hard with the backpack. I'd really appreciate any recommendations...

I had so wanted to enjoy this class with her but now the whole experience is just miserable!

Thanks for any suggestions... (DD really loves the water :)...)

09-29-2003, 04:38 PM
Have you considered a framed backpack child carrier?

Framed backpack carriers are much more comfortable when babies get bigger. The weight gets distributed across your hips as well as your shoulders/back. Additionally, alot of backpack carriers have extra storage. How much gear do you have to take to class? Maybe you could pack it in the storage of a backpack carrier? I would think that if you get the right pack, you could carry your DD and all your gear in the pack, and not even have to bring a stroller at all.

Some popular backpacks:
Kelty (very popular, widely sold)
Evenflo (less expensive, but popular)
Macpac (those that own them swear by them, but hard to get/try)
Vaude Swing (same as Macpac)
Madden (supposedly good for taller people)
Tough Traveller (supposedly started it all)
Deuter (very light weight, my favorite and the one we got)
Bush Baby (hard to find?)

If you do a search on "backpack carrier" in this forum and the stroller forum, you should find lots of discussions.


09-29-2003, 05:45 PM
How far do you have to walk to and from the bus? If it is a reasonable distance (just a few blocks) and I were in the same situation, I would skip the stroller and use just the sling. I mainly use a hotsling type pouch sling. I have carried DD in hip carry with this sling and a backpack before, so it is doable.

Also, how about getting a wheeled backpack like this one?
It could give you the option to sling her and wheel the bag (so your back doesn't have to do so much work), as well as wear the bag if the situation arose where you had to carry it.

I hope you find a good solution that makes swim classes something that you BOTH look forward to!

09-30-2003, 08:01 AM
Thanks, good ideas BUT I need the stroller at the class because there is nowhere to put her down safely while we change and dry off. This way, I get her settled and then strap her in so that I can change and re-pack our stuff. (This is way more complicated than I expected...)

09-30-2003, 02:13 PM
With a framed backpack that stands on its own, could you then skip the stroller and put her in there while you change/pack?

10-01-2003, 02:36 PM
This would work for a quick change. Make sure you try to keep your foot on the base of the stand and/or stand very close by. The stands on most carriers are meant to be used when loading or unloading. If you have to shower, I would definitely not leave your child in the carrier while you went to shower.

You could still use the backpack carrier and bring a light stroller. Or see if your pool would let you leave a portable playyard there to place your child in while you changed.


10-02-2003, 03:26 PM
If only they were so accomodating! They don't even want strollers in the dressing rooms, let alone playyards! And you can only get a locker as a yearly rental at an exorbitant price so I can't even leave things like towels or diapers there. Thanks for the ideas, though :)...