I have written about the English Style Pram and include it in my Newborn Layette. The reason I love it can be found in my post about Containers & Vantage Point. It allows a baby to be prone while sleeping, supine while playing, and makes the backdrop of his life a blue sky. Why is a simple background important? It makes his hand, which occasionally passes into view, something easy to discern and also something interesting because his “bar” for stimulation is very low.
A baby is able to put himself into a sitting position in this style of buggy and, because he is not propped, he is able to use his own efforts and musculature which will help him develop his core. This all happens before the buggy even moves!
Look what happens to these babies (both Princess Di and Edward, the youngest Windsor) sitting un-propped and unsupported in the buggy. Each has to use his core to stabilize himself as the buggy moves forward! What great conditioning this is – and babies aren’t typically getting this kind of deep muscle workout and contraction!
Let us not forget that it is through movement – the brain making the body and hand work – that intelligence is built at this age!
My only caveat about this style buggy is that it not be used for errands. It is best used for walking with your baby so that you both get some fresh air and exercise. It is a growing problem that strollers are getting larger and more people are bringing them into businesses and on public transportation and crowding others. I personally think strollers and buggies should be left outside (can be locked) or, if you’re doing errands, maybe baby can be left at home with a friend, family member or other parent.
If you do have to bring baby, have a lightweight umbrella stroller where you can easily take your baby out and carry him, fold up the stroller, and throw it on your shoulder, literally, like an umbrella.
For errands, I would use this $20 stroller without the top. If you have to hop on a bus or go into a business, you can carry your baby and fold up the stroller and put it on your shoulder. I had to take two buses and a train to work when my child was small and this worked really well for me without imposing on others.
I know many people won’t share my philosophy. But something my husband and I like to ask ourselves, “What if EVERYONE were doing what I’m doing?” For instance we asked ourselves “What if EVERYONE had a tall fence around their back yard?” Because we love walking and seeing the beautiful gardens throughout Chicago, we decided NOT to put a tall fence around ours though it minimizes privacy and security. We think Chicago is such a livable city because of the fabulous landscaped areas and we wanted to participate in that effort.
Likewise, if EVERYONE in the coffee house or hardware store were pushing a baby buggy, it would become very uncomfortable for the patrons, so maybe we should all do our part to avoid overcrowding. What do you think? Are you in agreement, or not?