I have a 4 month old. She has pretty good head/neck control. She just barely fits into our stroller. Is there a general guideline of when an infant can sit in a regular stroller based on certain developmental requirements for the spine?
The only reason why I ask is that the instructions for our other gear, our baby carrier, says this...(sorry for the long quote)
Before the XYZ Carrier attained the popularity it now enjoys, it was thought that slings were a better alternative to the outward facing carrier, in the sense that there was no pressure put on the developing spine.
This is due to the fact that the baby is in more of a horizontal position in the sling, rather than suspended by the crotch with legs dangling and pressure put on the developing sacrum at the base of the spine. At birth the spine is shaped like the letter C, as it was in the womb. As the spine develops it acquires secondary curves in the base of the spine and the neck. These secondary curves begin developing from birth. According to Rochelle Casses in her paper entitled “Infants and Spinal Stress”:
“A baby's spine is placed in a compromising position in many of today's popular carriers. If the carrier positions the infant upright, with the legs hanging down and the bodyweight supported at the base of the baby's spine (i.e. at the crotch), it puts undue stress on the spine which can adversely affect the development of the spinal curves and, in some cases, cause spondylolisthesis.”
The XYZ Carrier used with the infant insert address these very issues. In the XYZ Carrier the baby faces towards the babywearer with the back, sacrum and legs supported in an upright position. The infant insert has a bottom support cushion that is designed to support the natural curvature of a baby’s spine by encouraging a slight forward-leaning position with the pelvis tilted forward. There is also padding to support the back along the length of the spine. The position of the infant in the infant insert is exactly the position that a baby would be in if carried with its bottom supported by both hands and the head resting in the chest with legs tucked-up and, if the infant is old enough, straddling the waist. An update from the editor of a new edition of the above quoted paper validates XYZ's new design:
UPDATE: This article was written in the 1990s when the all of the popular upright baby carrier designs had the harmful characteristics described below. Today, several new and improved upright carrier designs are available. The gold standard for carrying your baby should be your own arms. In other words, an upright carrier should hold your baby the way your arms would, e.g., facing you with legs in a frog-like, spread-squat position with the baby's weight supported across the buttocks and thighs.
Her position in the stroller is not as reclined as when she sits in her car seat. One thing that I can do is to recline the stroller back to match the recline position of the car seat.
I guess a similar question goes for the car seat...is the position ok for the development of the baby?