The best jogging strollers of 2016: BOB, Bumbleride, & Thule
Jogging with a stroller isn’t for everyone, but for parents who love to jog, the hours spent on the road with your child can provide priceless relaxation and bonding along with the exercise. Hungry Runner Girl at Women’s Running writes:
“Want to know what some of my fondest memories are? They happened back in the good ol’ days, when I was combining two of my favorite things: spending time with my little one and running. I felt like it was one of the biggest win-wins in the history of motherhood. My little one was outside enjoying the fresh air, sights, sounds and happiness that comes along with experiencing nature. I was able to get in my workout and reap the benefits of those endorphins. As she got older, she turned into my biggest cheerleader, too and hearing, ‘GO MAMA!” every now and then sure gave me an extra push!”
Before I get started with today’s stroller comparison, let’s review what makes a jogging stroller a jogging stroller. First of all, you absolutely need a locked wheel or wheels at the front, because while your swiveling front wheels will usually keep going straight ahead, they can turn suddenly at higher speeds, which is NOT safe. Theoretically, any stroller with a locking front wheel or wheels can be used for running, but we wouldn’t recommend it, because proper jogging strollers are optimized to avoid translating the bumps in your road to your baby. The following features are a must, according to the jogger experts at BabyGearLab.com:
- Big air-filled tires, typically 12” to 16”;
- High-quality suspension;
- A single front wheel that locks in place;
- A long distance between the front and rear wheels;
- A semi-reclined seat angle.
The other features, though? This is where you need to make some choices. Here are three of our best jogging strollers, and what makes them special.
BOB Revolution Flex Stroller, $399.99 (sale!)
This celebrated fave is built like a tank, giving you superb peace of mind that your baby is safe while you jog. At a walk or a run, it will last for years and feel rock-solid. You can’t beat the suspension, and we’ve road-tested it many times so we know how great it feels to run with BOB!
One unique feature that makes the BOB Flex extra-great is the adjustable-height handlebar: if you’re like our Head Buyer and her husband, a sporty couple with a wide height disparity, you definitely want this!
It’s also great on all terrain, which is great on beach vacations but also essential if you live in a climate where you’re going to be navigating snowy sidewalks. If you want to make sure you’re not stuck inside when the snows come, get a BOB!
Thule Urban Glide, $399.95
What jogging stroller could possibly turn your head after being introduced to BOB? A lot of the main differences between the Urban Glide and the BOB are aesthetic: this sleek European jogging machine has a streamlined and polished look, and can carry just as much weight as the BOB (75 pounds) but weighs three pounds less.
The Urban Glide also has a longer canopy, a more compact fold, and a closed storage basket that will really protect your stuff on the go. It’s a narrower stroller too, so if you’re self-conscious about dominating the entire sidewalk, you may feel better pushing a Thule.
You can see some of the differences between the BOB Flex and the Thule Urban Glide jogging strollers in this comparison video:
Bumbleride Speed Stroller, $549.00
Introduced just this year, the Bumbleride Speed echoes the look and feel of the well-loved Bumbleride Indie, which wasn’t a dedicated jogger but could be used for jogging (given that it has that lockable front wheel, air-filled tires, quality suspension, and so on). However, the Speed adds the unique Speed3 steering system, which has three modes:
- Run: Locked straight forward for full speed ahead! This is for longer, straighter runs.
- Jog: Allowed to swivel only 30 degrees in either direction. This means it won’t flip out suddenly in one direction or another, but gives you a little steering power for a slower jog, or walking on rough or hilly terrain.
- Walk: Full swivel, for your regular walking pace, giving you full maneuverability.
The other thing that really sets Bumbleride strollers apart is the fabrics: they’re super dedicated to creating eco-friendly, baby-friendly strollers, and every few years the fabrics get even better. The 2016 Bumbleride Speed is upholstered in 100% recycled polyester, made from 28 used water bottles, and colored with a water-conserving solution dyeing process. And there’s no PVC, phthalates, or polyurethane foam used to build a Bumbleride!
Ultimately, these are all truly superb jogging strollers and the choice can be tough: what’s really going to seal the deal is standing behind one of these heavy-duty strolling machines and getting a feel for what they’ll be like on the road. If you can, we encourage you to visit one of our 6 stores and take our joggers on a proper test-drive. Our stroller experts will help you put these joggers through their paces, so you can decide which jogging stroller is the perfect companion for the adventures ahead!
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