Is your child too big for his stroller?
There has been a bit of a buzz recently about parents who are using strollers for kids who appear to be too big for them.
I wouldn’t say that I feel very strongly about this, it’s your kid and you can do whatever you want. If it’s easier for you to put your kid in a stroller – go for it. I do, however, have an opinion. And I don’t think that having an opinion makes me judgmental. Or does it? I’m confused.
Anyway, I believe that if your kid can walk – he should walk as often as possible. I am referring to everyday life – running errands, going to school, the park, doctor’s office, dance class – if it’s within walking distance (from your house or your car) then your healthy and able child should be walking – or scooting, as mine often are. The idea is to get them moving.
If you’re going to be out all day at an amusement park, then by all means – if you know your small child will get tired and whiny then do what you think you need to do. Bring your stroller with you if you think you’re going to need it. It may make the day longer and more enjoyable for everyone in your party.
My daughter is three and she has never enjoyed being in a stroller. From birth, whenever we went out for walks I would have to put my baby carrier in the basket of the stroller because I knew that after about 15 minutes in the stroller she would scream bloody murder until I picked her up. Once she started walking, stroller walks became her pushing her stroller. So we started to leave it at home.
My son is the exact opposite. If he can sit on or in something and be pushed around he’ll jump on it the first chance he gets. Do I let him? Not usually. I know that little legs get tired, but I don’t expect them to go for 10 mile walks with me. I have realistic expectations of what my children can physically endure. Have I taken them to an amusement park without a stroller yet? No I haven’t, but I will this summer, and guaranteed there will be some complaints from my five and a half year old. When my kids are tired, I’m prepared to sit down and rest for a little while or even leave the park.
Every parent has the right to do what they think is right for them and their child. I do, however think that it’s ridiculous to see kids ages six plus sitting in strollers for a walk around the neighbourhood or in a mall. Strollers are not built to hold the weight of a kid that age. If your child has a disability, I’m sure that there is a safer and more appropriate way for your child to be out and about.
When I was a kid there was no way that my mother pushed me around in a stroller when I was old enough to walk… what has changed?
I believe that a lot of people are raising lazy children. Am I terribly bothered? Not really. Am I sad about it? A little bit. I don’t want to have lazy and overweight children so I do everything I can to make sure that they’re active – which starts with walking, bike riding or scooting to and from school and daycare.
When we go out for a walk to the park, library or mall, I no longer bring a stroller with me even though my youngest is only three and according to the manual she is still within the correct weight to ride around happily in it – but she doesn’t want to. Sure it’s nice to have something to put our snacks and bags in, but then I have to deal with my son wanting to sit in it. I stand by the fact that he has healthy and strong legs and he should use them.
I want healthy children who live long and happy lives. So I do my best to feed them heart healthy foods, to have them walk whenever possible, to play outside and to limit their screen time.
Good habits start early. I won’t judge you for being accommodating to your tired child, but don’t judge me for thinking that sometimes it’s unnecessary.