Baby Jogger Performance Jogger
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No need to kiss goodbye to running when you have a baby, if you have one of these. The Baby Jogger Performance Jogger is the ultimate stroller for avid running parents.
In 1984, Phil Baechler, an American journalist with a baby, looked around for a stroller to run with. Finding nothing suitable he designed the Baby Jogger for running parents. Since then, Baby Jogger has released other models more suited to city streets, and designs for children and adults with disabilities.
The Baby Jogger is unique as it has a one-piece frame, which means there are no hinges or joints to weaken during frequent, high-intensity use. My Jogger has endured five months of solid on and off-road battering and it still runs as smoothly as the day it was born. The 20-inch wheels mean it’s also easy to push – it rolls beautifully along with the merest tap. Unlike other prams I have tried (admittedly not designed for runners) there is no danger of catching your feet on the rear wheels as you lengthen that stride for the sprint finish.
My passenger, 8 month old Jack, has been out daily in his Baby Jogger since he was a few months old, although the buggy is officially only suitable from six months. He gurgles with glee at running time, as he knows he’s in for a nice snooze/look at the ducks/blast of the wind on his face. His ‘recline’ position is adjustable and the Jogger comes with an optional rain cover (essential) and foot muff (which I didn’t buy as most standard buggy snuggles seem to fit). When it’s sunny the canopy comes down for shade, while still allowing him to see the open road ahead.
What we love
The Baby Jogger is built to last – mine has been bashed into walls, crashed round trees, shoved up rocky mountains and forced across streams with not a single malfunction. And for those who aren’t as daft as me, it’s also great on normal flat paths in the park (there’s a safety strap to attach yourself to the pram so your child can’t escape should you take a tumble). The aerodynamic design and shock absorption system also makes the Jogger really easy to manoeuvre, even one handed.
In the United States (where they think nothing of going skiing with a pram) there are far more choices, but the UK running-pram market is limited. However, baby Jack and I have been extremely happy with our choice.
What to watch out for
If you have coordinated running gear look away now – in the UK it’s only available in a black/red combination. It also takes up quite a lot of room when stored although the wheels are quick release, which means you can just about shoe-horn it into the back of a family-sized car (eg Audi A4) with one of the rear seats down. This particular model does not fold up, although other Baby Joggers do. The hand brake, in a similar way to ‘block’ style bicycle brakes, wears down over time, and the cables may need tightening – but there is an additional foot brake.
Who is the Baby Jogger Performance Jogger best for?
Running mums and dads who aren’t afraid of off-road terrain.
A made-for-running-mums winner – easy to push, robust structure, will cope with the toughest terrain, and comfy for baby too. The only real downside is its size – you will still need a more compact stroller for trips away.