With new baby carriers being released all the time the business of baby wearing can be a confusing one. A lot has changed in the 15 years between my first and fourth babies. To be honest baby carriers didn’t cross my mind much 15 years ago, but by the time I was having babynumber 2 (in 2005) it was the Baby Bjorn carriers which were all the rage, and despite their fairly unergonomic, dare I say down right uncomfortable design I still wore my baby whilst simultaneously participating in a mommy and baby exercise class. Now, nearly 10 years on I realise the error of my ways.
It’s pretty hard to miss the advice for safe babywearing if your a member of any of the mommy forums out there. However if your not on any of these (as they can test the patience of a saint at times) here is the T.I.C.K.S. rule for safe babywearing from the Baby Sling Safety website.
In addition to this it is also widely reccomended that babies be carried with their knees higher than their bum with the carrier supporting baby in the M position from knee to knee. More information on this can be found on the Babywearing International website. I found this website provided a good range of visual information. With examples of good practice babywearing in different sorts of carriers from ring slings to soft structured carriers.
Two years ago I had another baby, still fairly clueless in the babywearing arena I endeavoured to find some advice as I was aware things had changed a bit since my momercise days. Wraps had gained in popularity and many of those mommy forum gurus reccomended trying a Boba baby wrap or something similar. At that time I did buy a wrap, but was unsuccessful in using it effectively due to my own lack of confidence with tying and lack of knowledge or real life advice. I also tried an original Ergo baby carrier with my son, but failed to ever make him look comfy in it and the buckles and straps confused my already fried sleep deprived brain.
On baby number four now and I feel like I’ve finally started getting somewhere with this babywearing business. I’ve managed to take my now 8 week old on several hikes (because my two year old would live wild in the woods if I’d let him and can not go more than a few days without a hike). Mostly I’ve used my cotton wrap for these. I’ve also purchased a Hoppediz Bondolino , which is a slightly more structured version of a mei tai (traditional Asian-inspired carrier). I’ve used this a few times and think it will be great now that he’s a bit bigger and can be carried legs out. I’m also keen to try their Hop Tye carrier.
Of course now I’ve become competent and somewhat more confident with my babywearing I’ve caught the bug. It is a rather addictive activity and I’m quite keen to “grow my stash”, as I’ve heard the other mommies refer to their collections of carriers, wraps and ring slings. There is a whole world of beautiful woven wraps that I am only just begining to dip my toes into. Not only is there a range of materials and manufacturers of wraps there is also a whole variety of ways to tie these gorgeous things. The tying in an of itself looks like a work of art to me. I will blog more about this as I try more, I’ve definitely caught the bug for babywearing now!