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Onbu… what?

"Onbuhimo", a "back carrying strap" in Japanese refers to a waistless traditional baby carrier worn on the back, used for infants from about 6 months of age, able to sit unassisted. Onbuhimos allowed for a comfortable rucksack-style carry, placing the child high on the back and facing forward while maintaining comfort for both parent and baby.

Today's onbuhimo-style carriers are globally produced with slight variations. They can also be used for front carrying, including newborns and even forward-facing front carry.

Onbuhimo carrier traditional japanese back carry. Modern babywearing

Onbuhimos lack a waistband, relying on shoulder straps directly connected to the bottom of the panel to support the child. Let’s delve into their unique advantages and potential drawbacks.

  1. Weight Distribution:

The design distributes the baby’s weight onto the parents’ upper back and shoulders, directed towards the parent’s center. Think backpack! This redistribution of weight reduces strain on the lower back, making it for some an excellent choice for longer babywearing sessions. As a back carry, this can relieve the extra weight pressure onto the pelvic floor.

2. Lightweight and Easy to Use:

Onbuhimos are known for their simplicity and ease of use. Unlike bulky waistband buckle carriers, onbuhimos are composed of less material and hardware, being a convenient option for parents on the go.

3. Healthy Baby Positioning:

In traditional buckle carriers with waistbands, parents often place their babies too low, lacking proper thigh support. Onbuhimo carriers, without a waistband, simplify correct positioning. They encourage the “M legs” stance, with knees higher than the baby’s bottom, ensuring optimal hip and spine development. Learn more about proper positioning @ Is Your Carrier Smiling?

4. Comfort for Special Cases:

Onbuhimo-style carriers offer unique advantages for specific situations. For C-section or pregnant moms, the absence of a waistband can provide extra comfort by avoiding pressure on the belly. This can be a lifeline too for overweight users who may struggle with the bulkiness of waistband buckle carriers.

5. Weaning!

Onbuhimo carriers can assist during the weaning process by placing the baby on the mother’s back, ensuring that the breast is no longer in the baby’s immediate line of sight.🤱

While onbuhimos offer a range of advantages, they do come with certain trade-offs such as discomfort or fatigue for some due to the absence of a waistband. Another factor to keep in mind is your baby's age. For parents who are new to babywearing, it's advisable to wait until their baby reaches around 5 months of age before attempting a back carry to keep baby in sight and well supported.

For babies younger than that, whether carried in the front or back, it's crucial to ensure that the carrier has adjustable seat width, proper height adjustments and a suitable headrest to provide the necessary support for the baby's developing head control.

Check some popular brands offering onbuhimo style carriers such as Fidella, Lenny Lamb, Naked Panda, Happy Baby, Sakura Bloom, Didymos, Natibaby or Kokadi and more.

Hope you'll enjoy! ♥️



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