When Can A Baby Sit In A Stroller? Safety Measures And Tips

✔ Research-backed

Taking your baby out for the first time is a special experience. But you need to ensure that your baby is safe and sound and away from possible hotspots of germs or infections. This is where strollers come into action.

A baby stroller is an essential travel system for most would-be or new parents and a must-have item on their baby registry. But the loomingiAn ominous or worrisome event that is about to happen. question is, when can the baby sit in a stroller? This post will help you answer that question.

Read on to know when a baby can sit in a stroller, how to use it, and the safety tips to consider before buying one.

In This Article

When Can A Baby Sit In A Stroller?

Often, babies can start moving around in a stroller at around four months or when they have sufficient head control and neck strength or can manage sitting up for extended periods. However, the period varies among babies.

If you intend to take your newborn in a stroller before they can lift their head, ensure that the stroller seat can recline completely to support their head and neck muscles. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends against putting your baby to sleep in a stroller if they are younger than four months to reduce the risk of suffocation (1).

Consult your pediatrician if you have any questions or concerns regarding using a stroller for your baby.

protip_icon Quick tip
Balance the time your baby spends in a stroller with other activities, such as tummy time and other physical activities, for optimal physical growth and development (2).

When Can You Transition The Baby To A Regular Stroller Seat?

Help your baby develop their gross motor skills before the transition

Image: Shutterstock

Once your baby can lift their head without help and keep it upright for a certain period, you can turn the reclined seat of the stroller to a seating position. It is important to help your baby develop their gross motor skills to reach these milestones.

? Age, Risks & Alternatives”]

What Should You Consider When Buying A Stroller?

Some strollers can recline completely and come with attachments such as an infant-only car seat or a bassinetiChildren’s wicker cradle. . A few other things to check when buying a stroller are as follows (3) (4):

  • A solid frame and an easy steering mechanism
  • It has a five-point harness, multiple recline positions, and a wide base.
  • Check the harness system safety by strapping up your toddler in the stroller and maneuvering the stroller very slightly.
  • Check the buckles and straps for any deterrents of comfort.
  • Carry and lift the stroller when opened and folded to ensure it is sturdy but portable.
  • Check the brakes and the locking system of each wheel and whether the handles are comfortable for you to operate.
  • A large enough storage basket and trunk space

    What to consider when buying a stroller

    Image: Shutterstock

  • Attachments such as an infant car seat or a reversible seat to attach with the stroller when required.
  • The maneuverabilityiQuality of being easy to move and direct. of the stroller, both with and without extra weight
  • Ensure that it complies with the US government’s safety standards.
  • The warranty and return policy of the product

protip_icon Quick tip
When buying a second-hand stroller, ensure there is no wear and tear on the wheels, harnesses, brakes, and tether strapsiStrap attached to the seat to secure its safety. . Check if all safety warning labels are present (7).

Check the product description, manufacturer’s instructions, and product details to ensure the stroller suits your baby’s height, weight, and age. It is advisable to purchase only such baby gear that is built following the recommended pediatric guidelines for stroller use and safety.

What Are The Safety Measures To Consider While Using A Stroller?

According to a report by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, an estimated 7,200 children younger than age five were treated in emergency departments in 2019 due to stroller-related injuries. So, it’s crucial to select a stroller that meets safety standards to minimize the risk of accidents and injuries. Various types of strollers are available in the market, including jogging strollers, umbrella strollers, and double strollers. However, no matter which stroller you choose, you must take certain safety precautions. Some of these precautions are as follows (2) (5) :

  • Do not leave your baby alone and unsupervised in a stroller.

    Safety measures to consider while using a stroller

    Image: Shutterstock

  • Do not overload the storage space of the stroller.
  • Always ensure you strap in the five-point safety harness.
  • Ensure that the folding mechanisms are locked securely and the stroller is sturdy when moved.
  • Do not hang baskets or bags on the stroller’s handles, as it may cause it to tip over.
  • Do not place extra pillows or blankets in the carriage space to reduce the risk of suffocation.
  • Ensure that the wheel brakes are on whenever you stop the stroller.
  • Always place the tether strap around your waist.

protip_icon Quick tip
If you plan to run or jog along with the baby in a stroller, buy the one specifically designed for it because not all three-wheeled strollers are suitable for running (7).

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Are strollers bad for babies?

No, controlled use of strollers is safe for babies. The key is to balance their time in the stroller and otherwise. Spending too much time in a stroller may reduce their time for other physical activities, interaction with caregivers, etc.

2. What is the purpose of strollers?

Strollers are useful for easy transport, storage of goods, safely carrying the baby in traffic and parking lots, and smoothly handling the baby when you are on the move to run errands or on walks or jogs (6).

3. Should newborns lie flat in strollers?

Yes. Newborns should ideally lie flat. This is because sitting at an angle can impact the infant’s breathing, particularly for infants and preemies. When an infant’s head falls forward, it can restrict the airway, leading to breathing issues (8).

4. What can I use instead of a stroller for my baby?

There are several options for baby transportation that you can use instead of a stroller. These include baby wraps, carrier slings, backpack carriers, and hybrid baby carriers, among others.

5. How much weight does a stroller hold?

Standard strollers are typically designed to hold a child weighing up to 50 pounds, which is generally considered safe for children up to about four years old, depending on their size and weight (4). However, there are also strollers designed for older children or multiple children, and these may be able to hold more weight.

6. How long can a baby be in a stroller?

Canada-based pediatric and prenatal chiropractor, Dr. Carolyne Hiebert, says, “Ideally, children or infants should not be in a stroller for prolonged periods. Canadian safety guidelines recommend that babies should not be in a stroller for longer than one hour. Also, it is essential for infants and children in a stroller to always be monitored by an adult.”

A stroller can come in handy if you wish to take your baby out for a stroll. However, choosing a stroller that meets all government-implied stroller recommendations and safety guidelines is important. So, before buying a stroller, you must check all features and user reviews on different e-commerce platforms to make sure you are investing in a good stroller. Also, ensure using a stroller appropriate for your child’s age to avoid any mishaps. Moreover, maintain your stroller regularly and discontinue using it if any major part is malfunctioning or damaged.

Infographic: Advantages And Disadvantages Of Baby Strollers

Strollers may be a comforting travel companion for the infant and the new parent. Although there are several benefits, there are a few drawbacks to using strollers, as detailed in the infographic below.

notable pros and cons of using baby strollers (infographic)

Illustration: Momjunction Design Team

Key Pointers

  • Babies can move around on strollers by the age of four months if they develop reasonable head control or can sit upright for a longer time.
  • To ensure the safety and comfort of your infant, you should purchase a stroller with sufficient support, reclining choices, and sterling control.
  • Baby safety in strollers can be ensured by never leaving a baby unattended, avoiding excessive storage space, hanging bags or covers, and frequently inspecting stroller wheel breaks.
When Can A Baby Sit In A Stroller_illustration

Image: Dall·E/MomJunction Design Team

Watch this video for some helpful tips on how to get your toddler to sit in a stroller. Learn how to make it a fun and enjoyable experience for both you and your child.


MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
  1. Safety tips help protect children from stroller injuries.
  2. Prams and strollers: safety guide.
  3. How to Buy a Safe Stroller.
  4. Stroller Buying Guide.
  5. Carriages and Strollers Business Guidance & Small Entity Complilance Guide;USPC; United States Consumer Product Safety Commission
  6. Catherine S. Birken et al.; (2015); Parents’ perception of stroller use in young children: a qualitative study
  7. Guide to prams and strollers
  8. Are You Using Your Rear-Facing-Only Car Seat Safely?
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Dr. Jessica Madden

Dr. Jessica MaddenMD, FAAP, IBCLC

Jessica Madden is a pediatrician, neonatologist, lactation consultant, and mother of four, who has been taking care of newborns for more than 19 years now. She works as a neonatologist in the NICU at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio, and founded Primrose Newborn Care, a newborn medicine and “4th trimester” home-visiting and telemedicine practice, in 2018.  Dr....read full bio