Thursday, May 13, 2010

Stretchy Wraps and Limitations

Moby Wrap Moby D Baby Carrier, Earth Tones and ChocolateI just discussed how different carriers can be best for different situations in my last post, but I focused mainly on comfort and the ideal carrier for the situation.  I discussed the limitations of a stretchy wrap, in that it isn't best for a larger kiddo, and I mentioned that I prefer to have heavier tots on my back

Now, I have tried back carries with a stretchy wrap in the past with no disasters, and some babywearers do think it is fine.  Many suggest that if you just get it tight enough it will be secure.  I am not an expert at wrapping, but many more experienced babywearers than myself agree that it isn't safe... and, tellingly, the Moby website no longer has instructions for a back carry.  My Moby manual has those instructions... but I hear that new manuals don't.  Obviously if Moby is pulling those instructions, they no longer feel that this is a safe use for their product.  Their product images haven't quite caught up yet, since that is an Amazon image on the upper left for a Moby D, but maybe eventually those will be gone too.

I have tried back carries with a Moby Wrap, and a Moby D (which has a non stretchy panel designed to help with heavier babies and with back carries- it helped a little but I still felt it wasn't snug or secure or not, especially after a short period, as it would still start to sag.)  While you know I love the Moby Wrap, and the Moby D, I don't think either of them, or similar carriers, appropriate for a back carry.


Ok, so I admitted I'm not a wrapping expert... however, I was happy to find these great videos showing better wrapping skills, and showing the same issue.  Big thanks to Beth of BabyEtte for tweeting a link to this page with the videos!










So, what do you think?  Did I convince you?  Or not?  Have you ever tried a stretchy for a back carry?

13 comments:

Beth said...

Excellent post Natalie!
Thanks for getting this info out there.

natalie said...

Thank you, Beth! And thanks for the FB share, too! :)

Sara Eiser said...

I agree! And would add the Baby K'tan to the "branded" stretchy wraps that I just don't feel safe doing a back carry. Even though they have the additional strip to tie across, it still seems too easy to get out of.

jamilanette said...

Very nice post Natalie! More people need to realize that Mobys are great, but not for all carries. I wonder if anyone has used a Wrapsody Bali Stretch for back carries. I've never seen one in real life but hear they are a cross between a woven and a stretch because of the batik process. If that's true, maybe they are the solution to the stetchy wrap back carry issue. Hope someone can verify!

natalie said...

Sarah - thanks for sharing your experience! I've never tried a K'tan but from the description I've been surprised to see pictures of it used for a back carry.

Jamilanette- thank you! I agree, Mobys are great. I love that they're getting popular, and hopefully more and more people will use them and start babywearing! I looked up the Wrapsody Bali Stretch - wow, some of those are so beautiful!

I asked on twitter and @runningmommy said since they're a hybrid they are safe for back carries. I don't know whether it would be best for a back carry or not, but I'm sure that it would be better than a stretchy. It might not be as good as a woven wrap, though. But I'm not really a wrap expert - working on it, though! ;) - so I hope someone can chime in on that!

natalie said...

Tristina - yes, I love that site! I should add that to the sidebar... thanks for mentioning it! :)

KellyNaturally said...

As babies, I always used our hiking backpack or Ergo for back carry. But as a toddler (who can control body motions & understands danger/heights, at least partially), I've used my ring sling (scroll to the bottom for a picture):

http://www.kellynaturally.com/post/Hiking-With-Children.aspx

Amber said...

I have been in the market for a wrap, and thinking of cost I was considering a Moby. I cannot afford more than one wrap so I really need a safe wrap that can do front or back. Thanks for the great examples of what not to do/get!

natalie said...

Amber, thanks so much for letting me know this post was helpful! It is SO encouraging to hear! :)

If you're on a budget you can check out my DIY section, or check out BabyEtte's wraps, which are reasonably priced.

Trpflp said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Angil said...

Just wanted to note that the Baby K'tan Website Instructions in no way talk about using it for a back carry, perhaps they feel the same as us.

GREAT Post, and something I have been teaching about baby carrying for a LONG time :D Thanks for writing this up!

Anna Hughes said...

Hi. I think it's more a case of the back carry style you choose. I used a homemade Jersey cotton knit (pretty sure that's what the Moby is made of) wrap around sling on my back with both my boys from 5 months old. It has very little stretch lengthways and this is the key. I always used a rucksack carry so that I could tension the top rail around my baby's shoulders (or under their arms if they were arms out - though my boys prefer arms in, which is better!).

I've recently filmed my 20 month old on my back in the Moby in both the rucksack carry and the double hammock. I attempted to get him to try to climb out - of course he didn't want to! But with help from his brother and I and a bed behind we managed to get him to lean back and twist around to get out. He couldn't have done it without my help and wouldn't have without being encouraged. When i feel brave enough and really for the onslaught! I'll put it on YouTube.

I do feel that any back carry where the tails cross over the baby's back (creating a potential split down their back and little support if they are arms out and throw themselves backwards) is not good with a stretchy sling. In saying that the Double Hammock was pretty solid.

Anyway, that's my 2 cents worth. Cheers. :)

Sueforizzle said...

There's no video....Does that mean she no longer feels stretchy wraps are unsafe? lol