Babywearing can be tiring! All parents will want to sit down and rest from time to time!
But how comfortable is it to sit down in a baby carrier? More importantly, is it safe for your baby in that position?
In this post, we will answer these questions and how it differs based on the type of baby carrier used and the positioning of that carrier.
Can I Sit Down While Babywearing
Yes, you can sit down while wearing a baby carrier as long as you can maintain good posture with a straight back, and your child’s hips retain the hip healthy M position.
There is very little risk associated with taking a seat beyond you and your baby’s comfort levels if you get into an awkward position.
You may encounter the following issues depending on your body shape and the type of baby carrier you are using (more on this later):
- If you have a short torso you may find that your baby’s face will be too close to your face when you sit and that the carrier loses support.
- You also need to ensure you have enough room for your chin without getting too close to your child’s face.
Both are manageable if you position the carrier correctly.
Tips for Sitting Safely While Babywearing
- Waistband above the hips so the position stays consistent when sitting.
- Keep your back straight so that there is plenty of space for your child – hunching over will crowd them and can also lead to back pain.
- Only loosen the shoulder straps, or wrap knot, if you need to relax the level of support and create space. Your knees can easily hold the weight while a loose carrier keeps your little one upright.
- Maintain the frog position to ensure healthy hip development.
Baby Carrier Positions Suitable for Sitting
The most suitable position is the front inward carry. This should see the carrier hold its form and the baby’s legs stay in position.
This minimizes the risk of any issues relating to loose hip joints and hip dysplasia from being inflamed through incorrect positioning.
Facing outwards is possible for shorter periods of time but it will be more difficult for two reasons.
If you do not have a good clearance above your child’s head when seated then you will have less room. Your child will have a tendency to lean back and look around and without adequate space to do so, it would just be uncomfortable.
The second is that if you are not moving then your child may just get bored. One of the main benefits of facing outwards is the increased stimulation of the surrounding environment.
When you stop moving, your child may get restless! This position is only possible after they are six months old. This is when they are getting far more curious and explorative with their surroundings.
So don’t expect to sit long!
Side hip carry is also suitable and can be the best if you choose to loosen the straps and allow your child’s weight to be supported by your knees.
This is easiest to achieve in a sling where they are usually positioned to the side anyway.
A back carry position is possible while sitting but less practical. Your baby will also need to be older to be in this position and have more advanced head and neck development.
Just as with the outward-facing position, your child will get bored quickly and you won’t get much of a rest!
You are better off having them front inward facing so that you can interact with them and keep them entertained.
Baby Carrier Designs Suitable for Sitting
Most common baby carrier types are suitable for sitting. The only design that could be difficult is the larger hiking carriers compared to regular carriers.
Suitable baby carriers:
- Baby wraps
- Ring slings
- Soft-structured carriers
- Mei tais
Unsuitable baby carriers:
- Framed backpack carriers
You can still take a seat of course, but the heavier weight of the carrier will place additional stress on the chest, back, & shoulders. Maybe a job for dad considering the extra weight.
Sitting with a baby carrier is one of those issues that you don’t need to overthink. If you need to rest, then do so!
When you’re ready, get back up and keep moving.
If you plan on being stationary for a longer period of time then it will be in both of your best interests to let your baby out of the carrier to play, wander, or just interact with you in a less restrictive space.
But if you are in a space where it is busy and not safe to do so then you can be confident in the knowledge that you can wear your baby while seated without any major risks.