Despite what other sites might tell you, it is possible to jog with some regular strollers. You do not necessarily need a jogging stroller to go jogging with a stroller! Here is everything you need to know about jogging with a plain old regular stroller, because multiple strollers is the last thing most people need!
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My kids are 2.5 and 4.5, and I, unfortunately, only discovered how easy it is to go jogging with a regular stroller after my youngest turned 2. That is YEARS of running I missed out on! I am making up for it now!
When my oldest was a baby I actually bought a jogging stroller. It was an old, like reeeallly old, Bob stroller. It cost me $20! I used it for a couple of months then decided I would rather run when my husband was home in the evening than run with this stroller. The front wheel was permanently locked (most jogging strollers have this feature but are not permanently locked), and it listed to the left when i ran. It also took up valuable space that simply was not worth it for the amount it was used. I sold it and went on with life without.
My regular stroller that I have used for both kids is a Baby Jogger City Mini GT. Baby Jogger is a bit of a confusing brand as only one of their many strollers is actually designated for jogging. As much as I wanted a jogging stroller, the size of them deterred me. I chose the City Mini GT because it was quite a bit smaller than a jogging stroller, had only 3 wheels, had slightly bigger wheels as compared to most other non-jogging strollers, and the handle was adjustable (a must for my 6'5 husband). I never thought twice about jogging with this stroller until this past winter (over 3 years later!) when I got desperate for daylight runs. My motivation to run in the evening when it is dark, cold and raining is exceptionally low!
After my first run i was hooked! It was easy to run with, and running in the daytime with my youngest felt like I was sneaking a workout in while on the clock, which I suppose was true! It is a great feeling when bedtime rolls around and I have already gotten my workout in for the day!
So how can you start running with a regular stroller that is not specifically made for jogging?
1. Ensure your stroller has 3 wheels. Running with a 4 wheeled stroller is not realistic. The wheels are generally smaller and they do not turn well. The Baby Jogger City Mini GT is one of only a few 3 wheeled strollers on the market that is not specifically for jogging.
2. Do not jog with a stroller with a car seat attached. You are not supposed to do this ever, even with a jogging stroller. Doing this with a regular stroller is worse, as there is no shock absorption. Some car seats also sit quite high on the stroller, making it a tipping hazard if you are moving quickly.
3. Do not jog with a regular stroller if your child is under 1 (the recommended age for proper jogging strollers is 6-8 months). With smaller tires and no shock absorption it is not safe for younger kids to be bouncing around that much. My son was over 2 when I started.
4. Do not jog with a regular stroller anywhere but a sidewalk or smooth paved surface. Again, with smaller tires and no shock absorption it will be both challenging and unsafe for your child if you go on trails, gravel or uneven surfaces.
5. Slow down (to walking speed) when going over any type of bump or uneven ground, and when turning to prevent your child from bouncing and/or the stroller tipping.
6. Do not give your child food that could be a choking hazard, and if they are eating, watch them to ensure they do not choke. A regular stroller does not provide as smooth of a ride as a jogging stroller, and slight bumps/vibrations have potential to cause choking. Giving them toys or books to play with is a safer option.
7. Start slow. Regular strollers are not specifically designed for speeds faster than walking, so start slow to get a feel for how it performs and if you can in fact safely jog with it. Every stroller is different, use your judgement.
If you are in the market for your first stroller, the endless options can be daunting and confusing! If you know you will use it frequently for running and/or on trails and don't intend to navigate small indoor spaces frequently, I would consider getting a proper jogging stroller (this was my top pick). If your usage will be more city/urban, you need something easy to maneuver, and might want to casually jog with it in the future, I highly recommend the Baby Jogger City Mini GT. I don't know anyone who owns this stroller who doesn't love it!