Among all the other benefits of babywearing for you and your little one, one of the most practical benefits is that it allows you to hold your baby close while keeping your hands free. But let's be honest, you can't get as much done with a baby strapped to your chest as you can with a baby NOT strapped to your chest. Especially as your baby gets bigger and more curious to see the world, front carrying can inhibit your range of motion almost as much as carrying baby in arms.
But babies want to be held and sh*t needs to get done, so what's a loving but busy mama to do? Get that baby onto your back!
Benefits of Wearing Baby on Your Back
Your hands, arms and chest are completely free, so you can do almost ANYTHING, including bending down easily for laundry, getting close to your desk to type and working near a hot stove. (Please be careful with that last one -- use the back burner so baby can't reach your hot pot when you turn around and exercise lots of caution.)
Baby can see more of the world, while maintaining an ergonomic leg position. In a high back carry, your little one can see over your shoulder and take in the world as you see it.
Baby can join the conversation, at eye level with other adults. As baby gets older and more communicative, you can have sweet conversations over your shoulder, as you go about your day.
Your back is a cozy place for your little one to take an afternoon nap! The nape of your neck provides the perfect place for him to rest his tired head.
As you baby gets heavier, back carries can distribute and support their weight more comfortably than from carries.
Back carrying is useful if you choose to wear your child through a subsequent pregnancy, as it keeps your baby or toddler away from your growing bump.
Is My Baby Ready for a Back Carry?
Back carries in Buckle Carriers and Meh Dais are suitable for babies starting around 6 months old, once they are able to sit mostly independently.
You can back carry in a Ring Sling, but only with a cooperative baby who is able to sit independently and a wearer who has experience using a ring sling with front or hip carries.
An experienced wrapper can begin wearing babies in high back carries using a Woven Wrap from birth. If you are comfortable with one or two front carries, you can start wearing your baby on your back in a woven wrap around 4 months old. For babies under 4 months, it is important that baby is very high on your back and your carrier is tightened well, so that baby cannot slump down. Always monitor breathing.
Stretchy Wraps are NOT suitable for back carries.
How Do I Get My Baby Onto My Back?
There are 3 ways to get your baby onto your back in a baby carrier.
This works best for getting a newborn into your back in a woven wrap. Baby is fully supported by the wrap the entire time and you gently hoist baby over your shoulder. It’s much like how you would toss a sack over your shoulder, but MUCH more slow and gentle! Here’s a good a tutorial.
This method is often the least intimidating for beginners. It works well with older babies who can sit independently. It is particularly useful for low back carries in a woven wrap and getting baby on your back in a Buckle Carrier or Meh Dai.
Super Man Toss
This is great for babies who have good neck control but can’t sit well on your hip yet, as well as for larger toddlers. It looks intimidating at first, but many find it to be the easiest way to get baby on their back, especially for a high back carry.
Wearing your baby on your back opens up a whole new world of convenience and freedom, while continuing to support your little one's needs for closeness and comfort. It can be intimidating to get your baby onto your back for the first time, so if you need a little guidance, I'm here to support you! Get in touch today to book an in-person or virtual consult!