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Could any one help with a pushchair recommendation?

(12 Posts)
Lilicat1013 Wed 03-Apr-13 13:07:35

I was wondering if any kind person could help me? I need a new pushchair and I some specific needs and I was wondering if anyone could recommend one. I would really appreciate it.

I have a three year old autistic son and an eight week old baby son, the pushchair is for the eight week old baby only.

These are my requirements:

I need to be able to push it and keep control of it with one hand, my older son walks but he isn't always co-operative. I have him on a wrist link rein but he can escape from it and has run on to the road. Ideally I need a hand free to grab him when needed (my older son cannot use a buggy board and wont sit in a pushchair so it has to be walking).

It needs to lay completely flat due to my younger son's age.

I would like it to parent face, my baby son is tall and is likely to be out of a carrycot soon but he is too little to forward face.

It needs good brakes that are quick to apply, I may need to chase my older son at a moments notice so I need to be able to put on the brakes quickly.

It can't be too huge, we live in a top floor flat and the pushchair has to stay outside in our tiny shed space. I also need to be able to get on a bus with it.

Ideally I would like a big basket as I don't drive but being as it is nearly impossible to leave the flat the way things are at the moment that is way down the priority list. I will worry about shopping when I can go to a shop again!

I was wondering if any one could suggest anything.

Thank you in advance.

MandragoraWurzelstock Wed 03-Apr-13 13:27:48


well congrats on your new baby to start with smile

One that springs to mind is the Baby jogger versa. It's rear facing, can be pushed with one hand, has a brake on the handlebar for quick access and a massive shopping basket.

It folds really easily with one hand, and will stand up, sort of, when folded - but only if leaning on a wall.

The only thing bothering me about that one for you is the weight, as it's quite heavy - though I could lift it folded with one hand and a baby in the other, I wouldn't want to regularly - and pushing it with one hand is fine, unless you are on a camber as it will start to swerve downhill!

Also you can fold it with the footmuff still on which is great if getting on a bus.
It isn't a completely flat lie but I am using it for my 13 week old and he seems comfortable. You can get a carrycot for it but that won't fold iyswim.

There will be others out there too, depending on your budget etc.
Bugaboo Bee is also very light, one hand steering and RF but it's a pain to fold imo.

MandragoraWurzelstock Wed 03-Apr-13 13:28:26

Once you're happy with forward facing the BJCM will do you proud, is much lighter. (I don't work for baby jogger!!)

forevergreek Wed 03-Apr-13 13:39:37

I would say a bugaboo bee. It's light to carry and get up and down stairs/ on off public transport. The bugaboo cocoon will suit baby at this age rear facing.

As no seperate carrycot it means if needs must you could pop baby in sling and eldest in pram no problem ( cocoon will fold into basket underneath).

For yor eldest I would recommend a little rucksack with strap. It means he is securely strapped in ( you can tell him it's a big boy bag and can put some toys/ snacks etc in). Will allow you to relax more when out. I think jut type rein rucksack into amazon and a lot will pop up. You can take strap off later and just use bag.

Lilicat1013 Wed 03-Apr-13 15:30:05

Thank you for the advice so far.

I really like the Baby Jogger Versa, I am going to see if anywhere local has it so I can see it in person. I was going for the City Mini when I thought I would be able to wait till baby was a little older to get a new pushchair so the idea of a different Baby Jogger appeals.

I love the Bee, I think it is a lovely pushchair but I worry I would look silly pushing it. I am tall and plus size and it is a very small pushchair, I worry I would look as if I am pushing a dolls pram.

Thank you for the backpack suggestion, when I looked before I could only find ones that went up to age 3 and I was worried they wouldn't fit (my older son is slim but tall for his age). I looked again and found Busybaby Minipacks go up to four years old so should be fine. I have ordered him one. It has a pig on which will delight him, he really likes pigs for some reason.

I really appreciate the help, it has made me feel much more confident after a disastrous morning where he got away from me three times.

I just need to get things sorted so I can start leaving the flat on my own again.

Tiggywunkle Wed 03-Apr-13 15:49:11

I agree with the Versa. I think it meets your requirements - the brake is easy to flip on - however you do need to have your hand at that side of the pushchair IYKWIM because its round the side and if your son is heading the other way then its not useful. I only say this because I have issues sometimes (more with my BJCMGT) when I park the car but can only get the pushchair down the side a certain way and the brake ends up on the wrong side, and I can't lean over and put it on without turning the pushchair round or wedging it so it can't roll away.

I agree with the rucksack reins, however he may be able to undo the chest strap easily and run away. I know it sounds cruel but one of the MNers here has a child with autism and she I think attaches a dog lead to him somehow (hmm? I can't remember how but maybe by his coat or one of these rucksacks or a harness backwards?)

But to be totally blunt, I have to say I would be finding some way to put him into a pushchair and go. I would be more worried about his safety or even the safety of his sibling if the brake isn't applied than about the reaction he gives at being in the pushchair. Would he stand on something like a Joovy Caboose? I know several children with autism so know this is easier said than done though, but saftey for me is paramount and I think I would be doing some serious home training with a double pushchair to find a way to have him strapped in.

forevergreek Wed 03-Apr-13 15:55:32

Those bags look great too!

We have used a bee travelling and dh doesn't seem to mind and finds it comfy at 6'4. So I wouldn't exclude for height

Personally I agree with you with walking rather than strapping in buggy at 3 years. Otherwise at 6/7 years it can be v difficult to persuade some children with autism to then walk ( younger sister has autism as well as other additional needs, at 2/3 years my parents found her wanting to walk difficult but later on and now as a teen her walking and cycling miles is an important part of her life)

uhohitwasntme Wed 03-Apr-13 16:20:32

Hi, i would get a pretty grounded, sturdy pushchair, the bee is not these things. The versa or infact any of the baby joggers would be good. I also have a son with asd and he could escape wrist straps, he has run out in front of cars and its heart stopping, i am lucky in a way, as he will get into pushchairs, however there has been times when he wont and he has swung on the pushchair and tried to tip it sideways, when having a melt down, [he is 6 now] hence why i would suggest getting a sturdy, grounded pushchair. I use a puppy lead, cliped to his trouser loop, have also got an easylife rucksack, but you have to put a shoulder harness pad over the clip, as they are easy to undo.

MandragoraWurzelstock Wed 03-Apr-13 16:59:54

I expect you have already considered using a sling, instead of buggy, yes?

Lilicat1013 Wed 03-Apr-13 21:10:15

A double pushchair is not an option for reasons other than my older son refusing to sit in it.

Firstly and most importantly we would have no where to put it. We have a small shed space that barely fits a single pushchair, we would never get a double in.

Also my older son tends to go for his younger sibling when he cries, he finds loud noises difficult and will grab and pull at his face when he cries so I prefer to keep them at a distance where possible.

Finally I know I have to deal with the issue with his behaviour walking at some point. I would prefer to deal with it now when the baby can be safely in the pram and is often asleep than in a years time and my older son has outgrown being in a pushchair and my younger son might be wanting to walk a little himself or just generally be needing more attention.

The great thing about the backpack is he wouldn't undo it because it simply wouldn't occur to him. He wears a backpack for preschool and never takes it off once I put it on him, it stays on him till his school escort removes it. I also carry a backpack rather than a nappy bag myself so he is used to seeing me with one on so hopefully that will reinforce it. It will be easier to make part of his routine that he and Mummy put bags on before we leave the flat.

I will use the shoulder harness suggestion though if he ever show signs of wanted to remove it himself. That is a great idea.

Thank you also for the suggestion about the puppy lead, I have been worried about what I would do when he grows out of reins all together. It is already hard to find them now and he has only just turned three. In a years time I can see it being impossible to get anything other than wrist link style ones.

Unfortunately a sling isn't an option as I am epileptic, I would prefer to keep baby safe and separate from me just in case.

I appreciate all the great suggestions I have gotten hear, I am very keen to look at the Versa. I just need to plan a trip so I can look at one in person.

MandragoraWurzelstock Thu 04-Apr-13 09:25:54

Where are you Lili - no one seems to stock them near to us, but you'd be welcome to come and try out mine if you're near. Once I get it back from the shop - there was an issue with some handlebars so they're going to replace it.

Lilicat1013 Fri 05-Apr-13 10:25:09

That is a really kind offer, thank you. I am in Gosport (on the South Coast). I am not sure how near that is to you.

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