What did parents with small children do before the invention of the double stroller? While the stroller has been around for centuries, parents struggled with the question of what to do with their two or more small children for many years. Strollers for two have certainly answered that need. Now, parents of multiples and those with two or more small children can shop, stroll, and jog with a minimum amount of fuss.
History of the Stroller
Strollers actually date back to the 1700s, although they were then referred to as prams. They were considered a luxury item for only the very wealthy. The first pram design was impractical at best. In fact, the early strollers were actually miniature carriages designed to be pulled by dogs, goats, or small ponies.
By the early 1800s, stroller designers had added handles to their carriages, although the strollers were still awkward. They were typically tall and difficult to roll, cradling a baby in a precarious manner.
Answering the need for a more practical carriage, William H. Richardson designed a stroller that incorporated a reversible handle, so that baby could face forward or backward. He also created a much sturdier axle as well.
By the 1950s, strollers were available to a much larger clientele. These updated strollers even offered safety features such as foot brakes.
Obviously, strollers today have come a long way from those prams from the past. As stroller manufacturers continued to pay attention to the needs of their consumers, the stroller for two was created. Double strollers have proven to be lifesavers to parents of multiples and parents who have small children close in age.
Tandem Versus Side by Side
Strollers for two typically come in one of two styles: tandem and side-by-side. Parents prefer either one for a variety of reasons. Some of the most common comments concerning these strollers are as follows:
- Tandems are easy to navigate through crowded areas. Side-by-side models take up much more room, making them more difficult to push through store aisles.
- Side-by-side models are often made to recline all the way, making them a perfect choice for infants who need more support. Tandem strollers may not fully recline, although some of them allow the back seat to lay back at least most of the way.
Strollers for two are only as good as they perform. Parents typically have specific wants and needs in mind as they shop for double strollers. Pricing can vary widely depending upon the brand and the style of the stroller. They come in the following designs:
- Traditional. These are regular strollers that are either side-by-side or tandem.
- Jogging. These can be designed as tandem or side-by-side.
- Umbrella. Lightweight strollers which can also be designed as tandem or side-by-side. These typically aren't suitable for newborns as they offer less support.
- Convertible. These strollers tend to be sold as all-in-one strollers. They typically have matching infant car seats, which will fit into the double strollers. These strollers generally cost a bit more, but they may be worth it in the long run as they will grow with your babies.
While different stroller brands will offer different features, there are some basic options that you should look for in any double stroller, including the following:
- Swivel wheels. These take a little more finesse in their handling, so check out how well the stroller turns before you buy.
- Ergonomic handles. You'll want the stroller's handles to be at a satisfactory height for you.
- Wheelbase. Test the stroller to see how easily it will tip over. This is especially important for tandem styled strollers. Remember, you'll have two growing children in them!
- Locking brakes. These should be easy to use.
- Safety wrist strap. This feature is typically found on jogging strollers only.
- All terrain tires. Another jogging stroller feature.
- Removable canopies. You'll want to shelter your little ones from the harsh sun.
- Storage baskets and compartments. With more than one baby, you'll need all the storage you can get!
- Cup holders. This is a must have!
- Three point/five point harness. Keep your babies safe and secure with a good harnass.