You read the rave reviews, did the instore comparisons and finally parted with over £400. Now you find that your toddler hates the babyzen yoyo 6+.
If you are struggling to restrain your tantruming toddler long enough to secure its 5-point harness, you are not alone. Here’s how to quickly adjust your toddler to the Babyzen Yoyo.
Since its launch in 2012 the Babyzen Yoyo has reached cult status with savvy, travel loving parents. It offers sleek design and is easily stowed away in the aircraft overhead compartment. The Yoyo is not only ubiquitous in airport terminals but is fast becoming an everyday about town choice for space- conscious city dwellers.
Stylish parents will delight in this lightweight stroller but if your toddler refuses to settle in its new stroller, you may want to reach out for a refund. This may feel frustrating. By all accounts this versatile stroller is a great piece of kit.
Hold on to that receipt and lets get to the bottom of why your toddler hates the Babyzen yoyo and what to do about it.
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Why does my toddler hate the Babyzen Yoyo?
1.The seat is short and childs legs are not supported.
For older babies past the 1yr mark it is inevitable that you will need to buy the additional foot rest. Whilst it feels like a low blow from babyzen to charge an extra £30 for what seem like an essential component of the stroller, it was the quickest money I have spent. My 15 month old was beside herself when we attempted use without the foot rest.
The seat on the babyzen yoyo is in a constant state of recline meaning that my toddler was having to use her stomach muscles to keep her legs lifted in a comfortable position. This left her not only exhausted by also unable to nap. Luckily our first time out with the yoyo was in central London and I was able to buy her a foot rest sharpish.
Unless you have an older child or your toddler’s legs are long enough to reach the foot bar below, be prepared to factor this into your buggy buying budget.
2. You may need to buy a sheepskin
The lightweight nature of the Babyzen Yoyo and its ability to be tidily collapsed into a stowaway means there is minimal seat padding.
Depending on what your toddler has been used to up until this point, they may find it a bit flimsy and unsupportive on their little spines.
I always use some kind of sheepskin or foot cover (foot muff in the uk). Not only are these super comfy, but they are great for surviving outings in the bitterly cold uk winters. They also offer a cooling affect in hot sun, reflecting heat away from the black interior of the seat which could potentially get quite hot.
See pictured my sheepskin of choice – Binibamba’s white toastie snuggler.
I was worried adding a sheepskin might compromise the compact fold but thankfully this wasn’t the case.
3. Your Toddler may feel exposed in the Babyzen yoyo
The Babyzen yoyo is a stroller (push chair in the UK). If your toddler is used to a buggy such as the Uppababy vista or if you are transitioning straight from a bassinet, this may take some getting used to.
The open design of the stroller together with being low to the ground and forward facing (there is no parent facing option) will be a big change from what your toddler is used to.
There is also no handle bar to grab on to and attach toys and pacifiers to.
Give it some time. Toddlers are adaptable and soon enough they will enjoy being able to fully engage with the world in this new position.
4. The babyzen does not offer shade
The shortcomings of the Babyzen sunshade or pop-up canopy add to the sense of exposure. In short it is too short. It barely covers the child’s face (assuming they are fully reclined) and the limbs and torso are left exposed to the sun.
To be fair to Babyzen there are few buggies that score well on this point.
Babyzen offers a parasol solution.This will cost you an additional £45.
Whilst I can’t say I have tried the babyzen parasol, I have found parasols in general to be pretty useless in the past. That is unless you are using the parasol when you have come to a stop (picnic in the park, on the beach, alfresco at a restaurant whilst baby sleeps etc). If you are using one whilst on the go you will find yourself constantly adjusting depending on where the sun happens to be.
It’s worth checking out some of the alternatives on amazon.
5. The Babyzen Yoyo doesn’t support upright sitting
This is an important factor to consider. It’s widely reported that this stroller doesn’t fully recline (why its unsuitable for under 6 months). However it also doesn’t support upright sitting.
My inquisitive 15 month old baby daughter often pulls forward to an upright position or slightly forward bending in the yoyo. I do wish the back of the seat could be adjusted to support her spine here as it doesn’t look very comfortable or sustainable for lengthy periods. She often ends up slumping back, fatigued and therefore unable to engage with the world as she would like.
This aspect also further compounds the need to buy the footrest.
I am not a doctor but intuitively I worry whether long periods in the stroller may be a concern for my 15 month old’s back health.
If this is a concern for you it may be worth considering the Ergobaby Metro+.This is the only stroller currently on the market certified ‘Back Healthy’ for baby and parent by the AGR of Germany.
6. The Babyzen is not an all-terrain buggy
You most likely bought the Yoyo thinking it was the best travel stroller. Fans will argue that it is not intended to be a day to day solution or main stroller.
Nevertheless for many including myself it is.
The babyzen Yoyo’s light weight and compact size make it perfect for getting around London, especially on public transport.
The Babyzen Yoyo stroller fits into London buses and Taxis, is light enough to carry down stairs to the underground and can be quickly collapsed into the boot of an uber or car trunk.
You might say, living in a large city, my day to day is largely travel so the Babyzen makes a great stroller for everyday use and a smooth ride on city pavements.
But if this is your ‘holiday’ buggy, you might want to consider the terrain of where you are going. I realised this whilst navigating the cobbled streets of Edinburgh this summer.
Unlike bulkier strollers (my king of the road uppababy vista) and despite 4-wheel suspension, the small wheels and less than sturdy stroller frame of the yoyo didn’t do well to absorb the uneven surface. Toddler was thoroughly shook about – to be fair she quite enjoyed it although I can imagine some wouldn’t.
I would also strongly warn against hilly and rough uneven terrain. The buggy doesn’t do well and can easily topple over.
Like most buggies the Babyzen struggled on sand but was thankfully light enough to carry on to the beach.
Babyzen Skis are available if you are hitting the slopes.
What might parents dislike about the BabyZen yoyo?
1. Small storage basket
As you might expect the storage space under the Babyzen is minimal. However it will hold a few small items – diaper bag, lunch box, water bottle and a spare stash of clothing will all fit comfortably.
2. Not as easy to collapse and open as some strollers
Parents, like their toddlers may take some time adjusting to the Babyzen Stroller. If you have visions of arriving at the flight gate, collapsing the yoyo one handedly and gliding seamlessly onto the plane (as I did) you may be initially disappointed.
Not to say this isn’t a possibility, just that it might only happen on your second or third flight after some practice!
Collapsing the buggy is a two handed job. One that I personally need to get on my hands and knees to do (I’m still learning) due to the folding mechanism being located in the undercarriage of the stroller. The storage basket needs to be empty and the shade folded back.
The Buggy also comes with a travel carry bag which can be optionally used to protect the buggy frame from scuffing in transit.
Opening up the buggy is less involved and I am generally able to open one handed now although on occasion it has got stuck and needed an extra hand.
If you are looking for a buggy that is an easy one-hand fold look no further than the Nuna TRVL although this buggy will not fit in an aircraft overhead bin. The Bugaboo Butterfly and Joolz aer do tick both of these boxes. Check the comparison chart below for other options.
3.Less than intuitive Reclining/Sit up mechanism
My least favourite thing about the Babyzen Yoyo is the tricky reclining mechanism. For me this is definitely a two handed job and requires holding both straps at the back and pulling one side to tighten the back panel and push the seat padding forwards. To recline you do the reverse. This can feel clumsy and the tugging motion often wakes my sleeping baby in the process.
This is one aspect of the Yoyo that feels far from sleek and innovative design.
Overall is the babyzen yoyo worth the money? Should I look into an alternative?
Hopefully these tips will improve your toddler’s experience of the Babyzen Yoyo. But if you are still toying with the idea of returning it here are my 2 cents on the subject.
Having been marketed as the first stroller to fold into a cabin overhead, Babyzen’s reputation has been cemented. However since its trailblazing debut in 2012, other brands have caught up and there are now other options for cabin approved strollers. Babyzen may have some catching up to do as the competition are offering additional benefits.
This said, the ease and piece of mind of being able to take the yoyo on aircraft as hand luggage is a major win.
Whilst there are now other buggies that claim to be cabin safe, the yoyo is your safest bet for ‘no questions asked’ at departure gate. Cabin crew are all too familiar with the yoyo. Other brands may face more scrutiny.
This may be one of its biggest selling points however it comes at the expense of other features – including compromised comfort for the child.
Whilst the integrated safety strap, travel bag and padded shoulder strap for an easy carry make it a great choice for frequent travellers, this may not be the best everyday stroller.
At around £400 this stroller seems expensive enough, so it is disappointing that the essential footrest is sold both separately and at extra cost. It may be worth mentioning that a rain cover is also not included and will set you back a further £25.
But is it worth the money? If you travel often and appreciate sleek design then ultimately it is, although I would highlight that there are other options you may prefer. Although this is an expensive piece of baby gear the price point is (depressingly) in-line with its competitors.
A quick look at compact Strollers that may offer a good alternative to the Baby Zen yoyo
Looking for the perfect travel baby carrier for your vacation?