(I was given a Manduca Baby Carrier as a “Manduca Ambassador”, as well as for the purpose of this review).
Earlier in the year I posted about being a babywearer – how much I LOVED being able to wear my son around and enjoy lots of cuddles. However, to be honest, after returning the Inoshi, Babywearing left with it. We only had a Baby Bjorn left and it actually hurts my back to wear my son in it for more than 5 minutes (heavy little boofa!). So unfortunately, while I absolutely loved being able to wear my son, it just wasn’t plausible. It seemed I would be ‘doomed’ to forever stroll him around in the pram or carry him with both hands (which in itself is no mean feat). Then I was invited to a Kangatraining Class, and EVERYTHING changed. Not only with the actual Kangatraining class itself – which is freakin’ AH-MAZING – but with the Manduca Baby Carrier I tried on. I had to borrow one for the class, as my Baby Bjorn was not going to cut it for an hour (I’d need an hour of chiro adjustments to compensate for the hour of exercise wearing him). The carrier I used for the Kanga class was so mindblowing-ly epic I had to share it with you, because it has made a world of difference for us.
The Manduca Baby Carrier
Putting it out there, I had never heard of the Manduca brand until I went to Kangatraining. I was eager to see what it would be like with my 10kg+ son, as it was another soft-structured carrier like the Baby Bjorn. I was a bit daunted by the excess strappy bits and pieces around the carrier, but there was a Babywearing Consultant from Bubba’s Foot on standby, ready to help me adjust the carrier to fit perfectly for Starfish and I (and to show me how easy it actually was to put on – don’t let the straps deceive you!!)
What I love most about the Manduca (besides the obvious advantage of comfort) is the way Starfish sits in the carrier. As the Babywearing Consultant explained, the Manduca is designed for baby to sit with their bottom below their knees (the ‘M’ position), which is the orthopedically recommended position. This makes it extra comfortable for both the wearer and baby, as baby is sitting with their weight on their bottom, and not the other bits and pieces in between!
Our Experience of the Manduca
Wearing the Maduca Baby Carrier – as fitted by a proper Babywearing Consultant – was tight and snug. Starfish felt extremely supported in the carrier, and there wasn’t much space for him to wriggle or move around in (which for us is good). The Manduca sits up to his neck, giving him space to turn his head and look around at everything comfortably. His arms sit under the straps to add to the snug, fitted feeling.
I was a bit anxious about how I’d go wearing Starfish for an HOUR of exercise (he is 10kg+ as I mentioned before), but I was gobsmacked that by the end of it I felt perfectly fine. The way that the Manduca sits with its belt, and with the straps tightening bub up closer to your chest, your back is fully supported and doesn’t carry the weight of bub (which I felt was happening with my previous carrier).
One of my favourite things about the Manduca is that it is super easy to put on. I now use it absolutely everywhere – particularly when ducking down to the local shops. I can easily put on the belt, grab Starfish and then put the shoulder straps on (clip up the back) and voila, we are ready to go. The previous carriers I had been suing required too much effort to put on with minimal comfort, so it became easier to just use the pram. Another drawback to this approach was that I was less keen to “duck” down to the shops, because it would require a full assemble and dismantle of the pram. Now, however, I can easily do a 10 minute trip down to the local shops because it is so simple to put Starfish in the baby carrier.
Above all, the Manduca is extremely comfortable and healthy for both Starfish and I. I love that it sits my son in the ‘M’ position, because I learnt that this is best and most comfortable (especially for boys) as they don’t sit on their bits and pieces. Overall, don’t we want our baby’s to be comfortable and healthy? This makes the Manduca the perfect carrier for Starfish and I!
The Manduca Baby Carrier Facts
Cost: Between $189.95 (Classic Carriers) to $229.95 (Limited Edition).
Material: 100% Organic Cotton, made in Europe
Designs: The Manduca comes in a range of designs:
Classic Range – Black, Sand, Navy, Red, Petrol
‘Pure Cotton’ Range – Royal Blue, Coffee Brown, Chilli Red, Grey, Desert Sand, Night Black
Blackline Range – Red, Blue, Lime
Limited Edition – VIVID Red, BELLYBUTTON Berry Dots, BELLYBUTTON Milky Stars
Carries: Babies from 3.5kg to Toddlers at 20kg (maximum).
Positions: Front Position (inward facing and with infant seat for babies under 3 months), Hip Position and Back Position.
Note: The Manduca does not recommend carrying babies forward facing.
Special Features: Integrated headrest, integrated back extension, inbuilt head/sunshade, padded waist-belt, three-point buckle (two hands) for extra security.
- Hip-Healthy Product by the International Hip Dysplasia Institute
- The only carrier endorsed by the Australia Physiotherapy Association
- Exclusive carrier for Kangatraining
- Endorsed by the Australian Breastfeeding Associating
- Endorsed by the Reflux Infant Support Association
Instruction Manuals: English, German, Dutch, French, Italian, Spanish (just because how cool is that?!)
A note about Kangatraining and Manduca
Kangatraining is working exclusively with Manduca, so they are the only baby carriers supplied by Kangatrainers. All Kangatrainers across Australia have been trained by a Babywearing consultant to properly fit the Manduca baby carrier – which was perfect for me, because when mine arrived I was too nervous to touch it. I asked my lovely Kangatrainer Mel to fit mine for me! Plus, all Kangatrainers are authorized resellers of the Manduca carriers, so you can purchase one from your local Kangatrainer if you’re super keen for one (which you should be!). To find out more about Kangatraining, read my review HERE.
Stamp of Approval
While in my previous post I said the Inoshi made me a Babywearer, the complexity of putting it together would have made it difficult for me to use in everyday scenarios. I liked the feel of it and having Starfish close, but if it wasn’t put on properly it would take a while to readjust – plus it wasn’t practical if you wanted to chuck bub on while you ducked up to the shops. The Manduca Baby Carrier is the most comfortable fitting carrier that I have come across, and is super easy to strap on and put bub in. I have already used it on several outings (either just a casual trip to the local shops, or walking around the PBC Expo). It’s ease of use and comfort it provides for Starfish and myself means it definitely gets my Stamp of Approval – and is one of the products I would most highly recommend to any new or prospective mums.
I’m so thrilled to be a Manduca Ambassador, and even more excited to announce that I have a special 10% discount to offer to my followers for your own Manduca Baby Carrier. Visit HERE and use the discount code MummaMorrison to get your Manduca Baby Carrier today! (Coupon valid until the end of the year, woo!)