Facing out in a ringsling?

April 1, 2010 at 7:57 am 5 comments

Crunchy Nurse asked in a comment a few entries back:

What about when a baby is sitting with his legs crossed in the sling, facing out? I have done that in the Maya wrap for short periods of time. Not my favorite position, but the baby isn’t supported by the crotch. I agree that facing the parent is much more comfortable for the parent.

I’m going to just shamelessly copy and paste from the excellent resource, slingguide.co.uk page on FFO (front facing out) carries.

They say:

A further alternative to FFO, but not one that SlingGuide would wholeheartedly recommend, is the Buddha or Kangaroo style carry in which the baby faces outwards but with her legs crossed under her inside the sling.

This position has the merit of supporting the baby’s weight across the buttocks and thighs rather than just at the crotch, but the sling user would need to be very aware of the baby’s reactions and be ready to move her when she has had enough of the outside world.

It is also still open to the objections that it does not provide sufficient head support or allow the baby’s back to assume its natural, slightly rounded shape.

Moreover, it is a carry that could allow the baby to tip forwards out of the sling, so the wearer would always need to have one hand free to keep the baby in position.

While we at SlingGuide feel the Buddha or Kangaroo style carry is better than FFO, we would still always recommend the alternatives outlined above as being more comfortable for the baby and the sling wearer.

The reason I have ripped off someone else’s info is that I probably would have said the same thing, but I’ve got no personal experience with wearing either of my babies facing out.

If you like ringslings and your baby has good head control, have you tried a hip carry? With the legs out, one is straddling your front, one your back. This gives kids a really good vantage point to check out the world!

Thanks for your excellent question…


Entry filed under: questions, ringslings.

Will post again tomorrow, and in the meantime my babies hijack the blog. News & things.

5 Comments Add your own

  • 1. jstevens  |  April 1, 2010 at 12:07 pm

    That makes sense, thanks! I have done hip carries too. My youngest is 5 1/2 right now, so no babywearing for a few years. If I have another, I’ll probably get a moby. The ring sling always hurt my shoulder and neck, especially with my first child because he was over 21 pounds by 6 months of age.

  • 2. crunchynurse  |  April 1, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    Oh, and that was me, I was logged in on my other ID.

  • 3. Katie B.  |  April 1, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    I never tried front facing with DD, partly because I didn’t believe in front facing carries, but mostly because I was comfortable with my mei tai, so why change? Also, she HATED any kind of cradle hold (except for nursing), so we didn’t get much use out of my RS until she could sit on my hip (which we still do at 22 months (today!)).

  • 4. Christ  |  April 1, 2010 at 3:06 pm

    Great info A (and SlingGuide). I got my ringsling a month or two ago and LOVE it. I almost exclusively do hip carries with it. I did a kangaroo carry once because it was suggested by another Mama. It was a fine carry for 20 minutes around the house but neither Lily nor I really liked it as much as the hip carry. I wish I had my ringsling when Lily was a newborn, oh well I guess I’ll have it with #2.

    Crunchynurse my ringsling hurts my neck if I don’t have the shoulder cap really spread out. It seemed to me at first that I was spreading it too much but it is what works for me.

  • 5. Crunchy Nurse  |  April 1, 2010 at 7:18 pm

    I found out from a chiropractor, after my younger son had outgrown the sling, that I have an old neck injury. That’s probably why the ring sling always hurt me. It never seemed to matter how much I spread the fabric. I would constantly fuss with the sling and just finally take him out and try to lay him down. I was very frustrated with my little butterball. LOL If I have another baby, I think a Moby would probably be a better choice for me.


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