As more parents discover the advantages of using a running stroller with their kids, the more important it is to understand the best safety practices to avoid unwanted accidents. You do not just have to look after yourself, but you are also pushing around a defenseless little angel in your stroller. These are wonderful pieces of equipment that can really bring the family together in a healthy, active, and fun way. You can spend hours trying to find the best jogging stroller, but knowing how to use it properly is just as important. Below are just some of the ways that you can lower the risks involved with using a running stroller on the road.
Anticipate Your Route
Ideally, having a desolate road to run on would be the safest option. But since you share the road with other vehicles it is vital to always be alert of your surroundings. If you run on a sidewalk you must always look ahead and make sure that you will not encounter any pedestrians. If you are on the road you will want to run against traffic so that you can see what is coming your direction. You must exercise the same precautions as regular pedestrians when crossing the street or at busy intersections. Try to avoid congested roads, at least during the busiest time of the day. Your biggest challenge while using a running stroller is to keep an eye on what’s ahead of you and try to anticipate.
While it may be part of your normal workout routine to listen to an mp3 player and use your headsets, these will prevent you from possibly hearing sirens, cars, pets, and pedestrians that may be near your path.
Using A Stroller With Brakes
When you are shopping for a jogging stroller a key component that you should make sure it has is some sort of hand brakes. You always want to be in control and you need to be able to stop the stroller as fast as possible. While there are some that come with a brake that you can operate with your foot, these are not ideal and as readily accessible as having a brake on your handle bars.
Swivel Front Wheel
If you like to get the most out of your stroller and run at a fast pace having a swivel front wheel that can lock in place is also another safety feature you will want. When locked in place the front wheel is more stable at faster speeds and is easier to keep in a straight line. When you are going fast the last thing that you need is a stroller that wants to stray off course are have the front wheel start to wobble. At slower speeds you can unlock the wheel and this will increase your ability to safely maneuver the stroller around tight corners.
Use A Tether
This is another feature that most high performance jogging strollers come with. It keeps the runner tied to the stroller, usually with a wrist band. One of the scariest things to have happen when transporting your child is to have a runaway stroller. If you should trip and fall, using a tether means that the stroller will not get away from you completely.
If you are at the bottom of a hill and are not sure if you will be able to make it completely to the top, then it is probably a good idea to forgo it. You do not want to get half way up and then start to lose strength and control. The same goes for extreme downhill routes as well. You always want to be confident that no matter where you go with your jogger that you will be able to maintain control.
Other Safety Tips
The above are just some of the basic safety precautions for being on the road but there are some other measures that you can take to make sure that your child is comfortable and further protected while out jogging.
The sun can do immeasurable damage to the skin of young children. Finding a running stroller with an easily adjustable canopy can help shield them from dangerous UV rays. Even on cloudy days this is something that you should pay attention to.
Always bring your cellphone for emergencies as well as pack extra diapers, water, milk and other essentials. You never know what will happen and it is always good to be prepared. Finding a stroller with adequate storage will be a huge plus.
Air Filled Tires & Suspension
This is also another component of your jogger that can add superior comfort to the ride. Should you want to go off road and away from smooth concrete surfaces having a stroller with proper tires and independent suspension will help cushion your child from all of the bumps and lumps along the way.
Remember, children are more sensitive to temperature changes than adults. You will not want to go out in the tremendous heat of summer or the chilly weather of winter if you can help it. It is always important to remember as well that you are pushing around extra weight and your running activities will be more strenuous than normal. You will want to make sure not to over exert yourself on those hot summer days and wind up suffering with heat exhaustion.
Using a jogging stroller is a fabulous family activity that can provide a number of healthy benefits. But when dealing with being on the road, it is always important to be fully aware of your surroundings to avoid accidents with both cars and other pedestrians. Hopefully some of these tips will help keep you and your loved ones safer on your next run.