It’s all about the brake

We can often take for granted the brake on our pushchair. It's easy to forget just how much we use it once it becomes habit. Brakes have changed in leaps and bounds over recent years, so we've taken a look at the different types out there and who they might be best suited to.

The foot pedal

Probably the most common type of brake system we see on pushchair models. The brake pedal is located on the rear axle of the pushchair, usually in the centre but often to the right as well. These brakes are ideal for everyday multipurpose use for parents who are mainly on the move, and when they do stop, they are stationary for a while. Pushchairs such as the iCandy PeachOut'n'About Little Nipper Double and Stokke Trailz all sport a foot pedal brake. 

The hand lever

For busy urban parents stopping and starting at traffic lights, on pavements and in shopping centres, the handbrake can be a real bonus. Usually a small lever on the left or right-hand side of the pushchair chassis, you simply flick on to engage the brake and push off to get going again. Handbrakes are usually controlled by brake cables, so be careful not to trap them when folding and moving your pushchair around. Pushchairs such as the Phil&teds dash and the Bugaboo Cameleon3 have hand lever brakes.

The Auto-Stop brake

The Auto-Stop braking system is an ingenious design feature for parents exploring the great outdoors over rough terrain or jogging and just in case you might trip or fall, your pushchair will stop straight away keeping baby safe. This clever brake feature is usually situated close to the handlebar. You hold the brake bar with your handlebar as you push, and if you let go, the brake automatically engages. The phil&teds Navigator 2 and phil&teds Sport both have an Auto-Stop brake system.

The variable speed hand brake

Another brake system is often found on running pushchairs and all-terrain pushchairs. This hand-operated system is designed so that walking and running parents can vary their speed of pushing. Again operated by brake cables, you can squeeze the hand brake lever (which is just like a bicycle brake) whilst running to change from a fast sprint to a slow jog - something not possible with the stop-start nature of the foot brake pedal for instance. The BOB Revolution Pro pushchair and the Mountain Buggy Terrain are both examples of pushchairs with variable-speed hand brakes.

Press on - press off

This clever braking system is innovative and is operated by pressing the button down to engage the brake and pressing the same button again to take the brake off. These brakes are easy as pie to work and are often found on higher-end pushchairs. Check out the brake on the new and coming soon Diono Quantum, and the GB Maris.

There's a braking system to suit everyone out there. Which braking system do you prefer?

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