B.O.B. Sport Utility Stroller
By Dave Loveland
Here are three reasons to purchase a running stroller:
- You get to spend some quality time with a loved one
- Your spouse will like your heading outside more if you take a little one with you
- You want something a little more stylish than the 500-year-old stroller currently cluttering your garage
Jogging Strollersyou see them all over the place, moms and dads, running with junior, clipping around the mall, strolling through parks, even competing in road races. Regardless of the model you pick out, here are some features to look for in a jogging stroller.
First and foremost comes a secure harness system that is easy to use. A three point system is the minimum, coming around both arms and attaching to another belt coming from between the baby's legs. Secondly but as important, it needs to have a leash that hooks to the person who's going to be pushing the stroller. You need to use this every time, the whole time the baby is on board. Things can go from pleasant to disastrous in a heartbeat if you do not consistently use this safety feature. Lastly, the jogger should have some kind of hand brake that you can set quickly and easily. This should never take the place of the leash hooked to the adult, but it is nice when you are putting the child in and out of the jogger. Being able to set the brake and have it hold the rig will make it easier to get the child in and out of the jogger.
Having listed the qualifications of a good jogger, the following running jogger fit all our specifications, and then some.
The Sport Utility Stroller by B.O.B. is a great piece of machinery and fits all of our specification, and then some. It has all the above-mentioned features, and a few we had not thought of. One of its best features has something in common with your mom's car, your dream mountain bike and F-16 fighter jets-shocks. That is right; the B.O.B. has shocks on the rear wheels. It is one of those things you see and wonder why you didn't think of it first. The B.O.B. can be fitted with regular road tires or tires with a more aggressive tread design for trail use.
I took the B.O.B. and racked up the miles on it. Baby and I went up some of our local canyons on bumpy trail runs, and the tread combined with the shocks helped give a decent if not smooth ride for the baby. The built in overhead shade can be adjusted to all sorts of angles, to let in less or more light as the situation calls for. A small plastic window lets the baby look up and see you and visa versa without breaking stride. The B.O.B. Sport Utility Stroller has an optional weather shield that I would recommend purchasing for those blustery days.
This jogger has all the bells and whistles-lower storage basket, and a five-point harness system, which I found to be intuitive to use, with red colored straps at important attachment points to help set them apart from the rest of the straps. Next to the baby are places that you can slip in a drinking cup (it will need a straw) or treats for baby to work on while you huff and puff. Another feature of this jogger that I liked was the fact that the wheels can be attached and removed quickly, and the whole thing folds down in two easy moves for quick storage in a trunk.
This jogger has been on all kinds of terrain, from winter trail runs in deep snow, city streets in all sorts of weather, paved mountain paths and tread-eating broken shale, and it has held up well. It also handled soccer games and the occasional trip to the mall as well.
A couple of items that I did find that would improve this jogger: One would be a way to attach a pillow near the babies head. I find my baby often falls asleep as soon as we hit the trail, and I have to rig something for him to lay his head against. Second, I also think the hand brake could be beefed up, it is the old school side caliper style, and I would like something stronger.
Summary: Overall, this is a hard-core rig. It will take you and a little loved one just about anywhere that has a trail. Once on the trail, the shocks do a noticeably nice job of smoothing out the road for the baby, but you are still going to have to tough it out! All in all, a worthwhile investment that will last longer than your trail running career. The B.O.B. Sport Utility Stroller retails for $295.
Dave Loveland, is a contributor for GearReview.com and can be heard announcing Timpanogos High sporting events when he comes down from the mountains.
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