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Ages 4-5 months up to about 2 1/2. While I love my slings, they do get hard on the back as a child gets older. I got this when my youngest was about 6 months old and absolutely love it. It is quite similiar to the Ergo Baby carrier, but about half the price. Advantages: It distributes the weight very evenly, even in the front carry postion, it is quite easy on the back. I have curvacture of the spine, as well as other joint problems and this can be a real life saver for me on a bad day. Using this carrier is easier on the back than carrying baby in arms. In the back carry postion, the built in back support band comes into play and it is absolutely wonderful. For pure comfort, this carrier is definately the one to buy. This carrier is also very adjustable so baby isnt flopping every which way when sleeping like some carriers. It even has a removable sleep hood, and a bag that attaches to the waist to carry, a bottle, wallet or other nessecities. It rolls up easily to fit into a decent sized nappy bag and is available in a wide range of colours. It is also reasonabley easy to put on and take off without assistance. Disadvantages: This carrier is not suitable for breastfeeding. I would say it is more for long walks. you would have to take the child out to breastfeed. The adjuster strap can be very akward to position yourself when baby is in the front postion. It can be done, but it is akward reaching behind your back to fiddle with it. In the back carry the child can also be quite a nuisance if you have long hair. My son has taken to tugging at mine while calling me donkey for some reason :( There is also a toddler version available for 18 months up to 65lb, but i do not think I could tote a 65lb child on my back very far.
Background I have carried my son from birth in a Moby wrap, which was lovely and comfy ... til he fell asleep. At this point, he'd loll to one side, meaning weight would hang uncomfortably through one of my shoulders and I'd lose one of my free hands to support his head. I also wanted a carrier that was easy to put on and off for when he starts nursery in September and I have to take him there on the train and then catch on the next train but don't want to be in a tangle of fabric on route. The solution? The Patapum is a soft structured carrier consisting of a piece of fabric that comes up the baby's back and attaches to backpack style straps and a wide waist belt. It comes in black, blue or khaki and is machine washable at 40. Patapum does a toddler version to follow on from this, but we bought this as my son was under halfway through the recommended age (6-18 months, we started using it when he was about 10 months) and was very low compared to the recommended weight (7-17kg, he was 8.25kg when we started). We got ours for £43.99, most seem to sell at this price. Advantages - easy to put on and get baby into, especially as you can get them onto your back by yourself (there is a youtube video to show how which is better than the instructions which came with the carrier) - roll down mesh head hood which can be unravelled to cover the head if the baby falls asleep but doesn't mean the head is covered if they're awake - when they are awake, it is very comfortable front or back. The weight just goes straight down through your hips with almost none going through the shoulders. The child feels stable and secure. - the shoulder straps are amply padded and wide for extra comfort. They don't bunch up uncomfortably like my moby's did on occasion when I had to lift my hands up or wear a backpack. - neat little elasticated fold-over bits at the end of the straps mean no long dangly extra bits that could be a hazard to babies and keep excess strap out of the way. These are such a great idea and should feature on all bags. - it comes with a pouch which fastens onto the waist belt or has a shoulder strap which folds away. It features several pockets and a key retainer. You can easily fit a couple of disposable nappies, a packet of wipes, purse, camera, keys and mobile into it. It has become my main bag to take out. - the patapum puts the baby's legs into an anatomically correct position for the hips. - quite cheap for a soft structured carrier. Or maybe not? Minor disadvantages - it is slightly hard to get the chest strap done up in a way that doesn't dig into the back of your neck when in front carry, but it is doable with a bit of practice and flexible arms (or a helper to do it for you). - the baby is carried quite high. I'm 5'6 and found sometimes in front carry I was facing off against him a bit. - not much of a view for bubs - there is no outward carry position - I can't breastfeed in it. - whenever I see it I get "Patapum, Patapum, Patapum-pum-pum" in my head to the tune of the William Tell Overture, though this may not affect everyone! Major disadvantage - the sizing is, in my opinion way out. As I said earlier, my son is at the lower end of the recommended weights for this carrier and is quite a small boy (being around the 9th centile), but the fabric only comes up to his shoulder blades. Although he is secure when awake, when floppy and asleep, I face the same problem as with my moby, and the head hood is useless as it doesn't even come up as far as the top of his shoulders. I know he wears terries which may add to the bulk around his bum but it isn't much more bulk than a snowsuit or winter trousers. I didn't find the fit improved much when he was in disposables for a day due to teething rash either. I had such high hopes, and patapum's have so many clever ideas, it's a shame it's ruined by inaccurate sizing.
Soft padded, adjustable shoulder straps and heavy duty locking clasps ensure comfort and safety for you and your baby. Carry baby from 5 months to 40 Ibs.