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Are You Holding Your Car Seat Correctly? 4 Car Seat Carrying Hacks

When you can’t clip into your stroller, these techniques can lighten your load.
ByAnisa Arsenault
Associate Editor
Updated
June 27, 2017
baby strapped in car seat and looking at the camera with an open mouth
Image: Amy Aldrete

Thanks to Emily Puente, DC, CACCP, of Bridge Family Chiropractic, we just learned we’ve been carrying our infant car seats all wrong. Her viral Facebook video explains how to eliminate that ache and awkward stride that comes with walking around with a bulky infant seat—and it’s really simple. But we’ve found it’s one of many hacks for holding car seats.

First, here’s how Puente’s technique works.

  1. Turn the car seat so your baby is facing you
  2. Loop your arm that’s directly next to the car seat through the handle so the handle rests on the inside of your elbow
  3. Twist your hand so it’s facing away from your body, and use it to support the car seat underneath the handle

“I will guarantee you that this is going to be easier for you to carry,” Puentes says, explaining this hold will ease the strain in your upper back, shoulder and hips. However, she adds a clarifier in the Facebook caption: “I wanted to share that due to so many different makes and models of car seats, it is likely that this method won’t work for all seats. This was merely an attempt to pass along a creative idea that was shared and works incredibly well for the majority of those who attempt it.”

If Puenete’s method doesn’t work for you, here are some alternative techniques.

Carry in the center

The team at Oh Baby! Fitness recommends holding your infant car seat in front of you, as close to your core as possible—not unlike how you’d carry a laundry basket. This helps you maintain better posture.

Add a strap

Cocobelt allows you to carry any car seat make or model over your shoulder—and with trendy patterns to boot. But some brands, like Diono, sell their own carry straps for specific car seat models.

Switch to a carrier

If possible, Puente recommends using a baby carrier or wrap instead of touting a car seat around all day. These are ergonomically designed to distribute baby’s weight and save your back. And there’s plenty of options to choose from.

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