Monday, March 17, 2014

Why I Love (Almost) Everything About the Britax B-Agile (a Stroller Review)

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P. at five would gladly be pushed from here to there in a stroller - and up until now we've had strollers plenty big enough to accommodate a big girl like her. Even our old Quinny Buzz and Quinny Zapp - my two favorite strollers in the entire world - were generous enough to hold a five-year-old. The Britax B-Ready with the double stroller kit? That thing handled 30 pounds of little girl and 15 pounds of baby boy, in any configuration, no problem. I know because I spent the spring, summer, and fall walking to and from P.'s childcare situation with the B-Ready.

At five P. has, if not outgrown the stroller, outgrown my desire to wear myself out pushing her around. Personally, I don't see anything wrong with little ones who are bigger using strollers now and then but P. was kind of a stroller addict. Why walk when you can ride, after all? So I said, enough. Finito. It's time to level up and walk by my side, even if it's going to mean we can't necessarily go on the same epic walks until P. has trained up some. She wasn't happy about my pronouncement but she's been coping admirably with the help of a few tiny well-timed treats.

And my thinking was that if I was going to start making her exercise her own two legs I did not need to keep a giganto stroller around. Don't get me wrong, I loved the B-Ready for its versatility, but that thing literally took up my entire trunk when folded. The Britax B-Agile that we replaced it with? Not so much.

Just half my trunk, and I am okay with that - especially considering that this stroller weighs about half as much as most of the strollers we've had. And it's the only one we've ever had with a one-handed fold. Seriously, the Zapp required about five steps that were not at all obvious. With the B-Agile, you press (not press-and-hold) one button and then pull up on a center strap. To open it, you press another button and open it up. This is important to me considering that I once got my finger stuck in one of our other strollers that required two hands to open. While on a business call. Yeah.

After we sold the B-Ready, we were torn between the B-Agile and the Baby Jogger City Mini - which to me seem almost identical in terms of looks and features. What sold us on the B-Agile was, for me, the slightly larger sun canopy since we walk facing the sun most afternoons and, for the mister, the fact that Britax products have been so good to us in the past.

Of course, P. somehow ended up in it for a while during our inaugural outing. But that's okay since she weighs just over 30 pounds so is well under the weight limit for this stroller. Even with her in it, the B-Agile was light and easy to maneuver.

My only complaint? It's... well, tippy. Given the crappy sidewalks around here it's not hard to end up with one side wheel up and the front wheels pointing just so and the whole thing threatening to keel right over. So I guess we need to be careful about that going forward. I am having the tiniest bit of buyer's regret over here because of that since the B-Agile does come in a four wheel version and I think that would have been more stable. Oh, well. Can't have it all, I guess, unless Britax wants to give me a four-wheel freebie since I am tapped out.

Overall, I'm happy that I now have more trunk space, less chance of back strain, and an excuse to make P. walk!

Now let's hear your stroller reviews! What are you pushing these days? And when did you say, 'okay, you're too big to stroll' to your little ones?

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