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Thread: Why you should choose soft cloth/ergo slings vs other carriers (eg. Baby Bjorn)

  1. #19

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    I have a Jazzsling and another sling and I can't praise them enough! Although it was too hot to wear my baby when he was born, i use it with him now and he absolutely loves being close to his mummy and being able to see the world from up high as we walk around, i love it too, it doesn't even feel like i am carrying a 12kg child. I have a dodgy back too and it is never sore after i carry him, even if its for a couple of hours.



    My aunty is the manager of a baby store and she NEVER recommends the baby bjorn and the like to any customers because she too knows they are not good for baby's spine. She always recommends a sling and thats how I found out about my slings (i purchased mine from ebay).

    I LOVE my slings and I will definately be using them for my next baby.

  2. #20

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    We bought a BB for DS before he was born coz we saw them everywhere and were told they were the best and i hate it. DS is a big bub and i cant carry him in it at all. I know that part of it is coz im weak and do get a sore back but i could only carry him for 3 months in it. I had him in it for 10 minutes the other day and i still have the pain in my lower back. DH can wear it and does but only for short periods as i am concerned about the legs dangling so we mainly use it if we need to jump in and out of the car when we are shopping. I wish wish wish we had bought an ergo but ds hates it coz he isn't used to having his legs spread and prefers to face outwards. I wish i had found this article when we were shopping for carriers. Everyone has the right to make their own decisions for their children and i respect that i just wish i had made a different decision.

  3. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by nishy03 View Post
    I went onto Baby Bjorn?s website and found several articles relating to the safety and reliability of the product, and the fact that it is the only carrier that The AUSTRALIAN college of Midwives endorse, kinda sells the point to me.
    Well they're not going to have articles that denigrate their product are they?!

    Have you tried anything other than a BB? I am not a carrier afficionado but I have tried commercial carriers and then moved onto ergo, then scootababy, then beetlebums (1/2 buckle with mei tai straps) and finally a sling from bear hug baby... I actually bought the sling before the beetlebums but only just found the confidence recently to try something that wasn't structured! I found it awesome and so easy to carry around. Anyway the point is that in terms of comfort for myself and bubs I threw the commercial carriers in the bin. I can walk around all day in the ones I have now with no effect.

  4. #22

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    I think threes a reason why they are available and stores are knowledgeable about them
    Yes Nishy, there is a reason. It's because they are made by a large company with a large marketing budget with which to entice stores to stock their product and to "train" the staff in the product.

    Many of the best baby carriers are home-made or made by work at home mums or small companies. They often don't advertise and many main-stream stores don't stock them (because they don't know about them - they only deal with large suppliers generally).

    MamaD, great post and spot on.

    Nishy, I'm glad that you are happy with your purchase, and if it's right for you that's great. Personally I loved my ring sling and highly recommend these. Everyone is different.

  5. #23

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    We have a BB and a Buba Sling.

    We bought the BB whe we were expecting, thinking it would be the right thing, once DD was big enough for it (supposed to be 3.5kg, she was 3 months old before she reached that weight... it worked really well for us for quite a while.

    We were given a buba sling when she was about 4 months old, and she hated it at that stage.

    Eventually she loved it and still does!

    I went to use the BB when she was 10 months old and 8.5kg and hurt my neck/upper back, requiring 3 physio sessions to put it all right again

    I really really really wish I had bought a sling earlier, for the next bub we are planning to try a HAB or another similar sling

    So from someone who has used both.... the sling wins

  6. #24

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    i use a hab and its brilliant! the only concern is that i get very hot in it... but dd feels light as a feather in it which is the biggest concern.... i have tried a structured sling and didnt like it. i am also going to make a sling based on a mei tai just to see whether i like it...

  7. #25

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    The trick with the HAB, I found, was to wear thin layers underneath - yes, even in a cold Melbourne winter! Not only because of the shared body heat, but because the HAB sits nicely under jackets and shawls that you put on to keep extra warm if you need it When I started using the Ergo I had to judge the day better because jackets and things look bulky underneath...but by then it was summer and not so much of an issue. Looks like will be the same again for us, this time round, and will be toying with the idea of the Sleepy Wrap, a woven wrap or some such thing until the kidlet is big enough for the Ergo (don't actually fancy the idea of the Ergo for a smaller baby, the insert seems a bit fiddly when I could just pop the kid into the snuggly hole of the wrap!).

  8. #26

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    The research in the original article is NOT outdated. Most commercial baby carriers are still designed the same way and the baby's weight is held by the crotch. This is less than ideal. You don't need to have a medical degree to see that all the weight is concentrated in one spot: the bottom of the baby's spine. I don't know why the Australian college of midwives endorses the BB. But I would guess it is mainly that they want to endorse baby wearing as a concept and out of the widely available commercial carriers, the BB is the better product (compared to cheaper rip-offs of the same design). If they endorsed a carrier that is hard to purchase and available in limited numbers, then that wouldn't be very helpful to the consumer.
    I agree, the main reason that BB are so successful is that they were one of the first commercial manufacturers of carriers and they are available all around the world and spend a lot of money on advertising.
    I would actually count an Ergo as a commercial carrier, too. But, it has a very different design. It has a wide crotch, that the baby sits in, rather than hangs in. Just look at babies worn in them. They look way more comfortable. The weight is spread across the baby's thighs and hips, rather than just the crotch. Just like you would have your arm under the baby's bottom. And they're way more comfortable than the BB. i have used mine sooo much.

    The best carrier for both mum and baby is a wrap like the HAB IMO. The weight of the baby is pushed against the mother's chest and the rest of the weight is spread over the baby's bum and thighs and transferred to the mother's hip. It is sooooo comfortable to wear. (I agree, I used to wear just a long sleeved shirt under the HAB for my winter baby and a jacket over the top. ) They are also absolutely perfect for newborns as they hold the head and you can literally bend down to pick something off of the floor without having to support the head. And baby won't even wake up. Great for when you're doing the laundry and stuff like that. i used to wear DD pretty much most of the day (when she wasn't feeding) for the first 3 months. And it was not uncomfortable.

    Have you tried any other carrier than the BB? I have yet to meet a person who has trialled a BB and an Ergo or HAB and still said that they would prefer the BB.
    I'm not against BB if your other option would be not to have a carrier at all. But it is by no means the best carrier. Not even close. But that is the case with lots of things. Just because something is successful doesn't mean it's the best product.

    I personally don't like slings very much. I have a couple of WAHM made ones. But just don't like the one-shoulder carrying. It gives me a sore neck. But they are great for quick dashes to the shops as they are so simple.

    ETA: I would be very cautious taking advice from baby store sales staff. I don't want to offend anyone, but really, they are sales staff. They might know the products, but only from what the manufacturer tells them. I have often had situations when I was more knowledgeable about the product than they were. They are not orthopaedic surgeons, chiroprators, osteopaths or physiotherapists.
    Your MW is a more credible source. But I would definitely ask her what she bases her evaluation on. The experience of other mothers? The safety ratings of the product? Her own experience or research into the development of the spine of an infant.

    Just my 2 cents.

    Sasa
    xx
    Last edited by sunshine_sieben; May 27th, 2009 at 01:07 AM.

  9. #27

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    Oh, another point is: with most slings and wraps, but definitely with the Ergo and HAB, you can wear your baby up to a much higher weight. The BB synergy for example only goes up to 12kg. The Ergo however goes up to 40lb (18kg). So handy for travelling with a toddler. And I know what I'm talking about having made a 30 hour trip to Germany twice (just DD and me, no other support person. First time she was 8 months, second time she was 16 months).

    Sasa

  10. #28

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    DS was 17 months when we went to Ireland and without the Ergo there is heaps we would not have been able to do and see because the buggy wouldn't be suitable in...like the Guinness Brewery, and walking tracks along coastal cliffs! Worth its weight in gold!

  11. #29

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    Sasa, I've not used a HAB itself, but am familiar with stretchy (knit fabric) wraps in general. Whilst many people find that a stretchy wrap is fantastic for newborns and smaller bubs (and certainly has a greater longevity in both the amount of time it can be comfortably worn for and the weight it can carry compared to the Bjorn), they are often found to be not as supportive for older babies because of the stretch factor (resulting in a very saggy baby).

    I'm not saying this to discount what you are saying about HABs being more suitable for a wider weight range than Bjorn, because this is true, but to inform people who enjoy wrapping their babies and don't really find soft structured carriers like an Ergo appealing, but are finding their HAB's less supportive that there are more supportive wrap options available - woven wraps. Brands like Vatanai, Girasol, Storchenwiege, Didymos make wraps from cloth specifically woven for baby wearing.

    They are a little harder to get in Aus (you won't find them in stores), but can be ordered directly from the manufacturer, second hand - thebabywearer and baby carriers downunder both have for-sale-or-trade boards (as well as a wealth of information), or baby carriers downunder have instocks in some brands and do occasional co-ops in others.

  12. #30

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    we have an ergo and a ring sling.

    i personally love my ring sling. have been using it since DD was a week old and still going strong and she is almost 21 months. she loves it too!

    we got the ergo as DH felt more comfortable with a bit more structure. and we use this for hiking. DD now sits on his back with it and can sleep very peacefully. we certainly wouldnt have managed without it while trekking around tasmania that's for sure! i also like that the ergo has a sun hood attached.

    we borrowed a BB carrier when DD was 3 months at a BBQ. and i *guess* because she was so used to the free form of the sling, she absolutely screamed blue murder. she would arch her back relentlessly trying to move around and sit comfortably. after 5 minutes at the most we had to give it back. what i do like about the BB carrier is that young bubs can face outwards i *think* a bit earlier than in the ring sling...not sure if this is correct though as i have forgotten when we started using leila in the outward position on the sling...

    as for the baby store staff, yeah, always with a grain of salt i reckon. nothing beats doing your own research either way. and it's true that the big brands like BB do in-house demonstrations for the baby stores ALL the time, while slings like the ellaroo just dont have the marketing budget to compete.

  13. #31

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    Suse, I agree with your point about HAB and other soft knit carriers being a little stretchy for older/heavier kids. I just meant to say it's possible. But that's one of the reasons why I bought the Ergo when DD was older. But my main reason for the ergo was that DH didn't really want to use the HAB as he felt too much like a "tree hugging hippie" while I have embraced my hppie-ness. I thought he would take the pressure off of me a little more if he had a carrier he would like. Unfortunately, this strategy didn't work out. I still ended up being the one carrying DD everywhere I haven't used my Ergo in a couple of months as my belly is getting in the way now. But until then it was fantastic.

    Most of us who are really into baby wearing seem to find it hard to find 1 sling/carrier for absolutely EVERY situation. That's why most of us seem to have a couple of different ones. Or maybe we're just obsessive... Then again, I know of people who have 3 different prams... while I could have gone without a pram.

    Sasa

  14. #32

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    Was looking at buying an Ergo carrier anyway but have bought one tonight after reading through this thread. Must say that I've had the ABA sling (they use and sell them at the hospital where I had DS) and the Baby Bjorn sling (recommended by Choice) and liked both. DS is 8 and a half months old now though and at nearly 10kg, I've been finding it difficult to carry him. I did buy a frame back carrier but I must be too short because it really was uncomfortable.

    Anyway, just wanted to say thanks!

  15. #33

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    You're gonna LOVE your Ergo!

  16. #34

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    LOL at embracing your inner hippyness Sasa. I know where you are coming from - I wasn't meaning to contradict you hon, because there are people who successfully use stretchy wraps with babies at a much heavier weight than other people find comfortable. I just wanted to put it out there, because I've seen a few comments from time to time that some people aren't finding their HABs (or equivalent) comfy any more. But there's no such thing in the babywearing world as one size fits all, so to speak, what doesn't work for one person may work fantastically for others.

    My DP didn't wear DS until I got a Scootababy (a dedicated hip carrier, with a SSC style waist and a Windpro shoulder - it's really quick and easy to use and really supportive for toddlers) - because he couldn't be bothered with straps and wraps - he found it easier to just carry DS in arms. But now he carries him from time to time, which I love. I've got a new SSC on order and I think that he might enjoy wearing that too, especially for back carries. It surprises me that more guys aren't into wraps, I thought they would enjoy the 'boy scout' ethos of knots and twists LOL.

    My carrier selection is constantly evolving, what worked for me when DS was little isn't working for me now, but because I want to keep wearing him I update my carriers to ones that work better for toddlers. But I agree that having different carriers for different circumstances can be of huge benefit, and yes, it becomes a bit of an obsession - I only use my pram for DS' day sleeps at home, apart from that it's only been used as a 'pram' (that is, as a mode of transport) less than ten times.

  17. #35

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    I am just basing this on previous experience. I used the Snugli with my first child and it hurt my back terribly. It was also cumbersome with all the clips, straps, etc. This time around I am looking into a soft carrier, like the beco. It just looks more comfortable for the baby and my poor back.
    Last edited by MantaRay; April 28th, 2010 at 06:12 AM.

  18. #36

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    I have to agree that back pack style carrier from Target is awful! I got given one and my back and shoulders ache so much! I used a pouch style carrier and loved it. Because I still wear my 3 year old son along with my new baby daughter, I thought I'd invest in another sling. After some searching and reading, I got a 100knots ring sling and it rocks! I just got it so can't stop raving about it! It's so much more comfortable than my old pouch style sling!

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