My 5 top tips for using an onbuhimo

Since my daughter outgrew our Manduca carrier when she was about two years old, I have used an onbuhimo to carry her. I have found this carrier to be very comfortable for both of us. It has a wider seat for my daughter to support her long legs better and I’m happy that there is no waistband that digs into my tummy.  

Onbuhimo’s are great for carrying your toddler or young child on your back. And because onbuhimo carriers do not have a waistband, it is an ideal carrier for anyone who is pregnant and would still like to carry their older child.

However, sometimes it can be a bit tricky to get a comfortable fit for your onbuhimo. These tips below should help:

1.     Let your child sit on a bench

Start by placing your onbuhimo on a bench or higher seat, then sit your child on the carrier and thread his legs through the shoulder straps. Next, crouch in front of the bench with your back to your child and put the shoulder straps on. Clip your chest clip right away, then stand up. The higher you can position your child, the easier it will be for you.

2.     Lean forward slightly

While tightening your shoulder straps you should lean forward slightly and put one hand under your child’s bottom to lift him, while tightening one shoulder strap at a time. Make sure that you don’t lean forward too much, otherwise your child might start pushing off your back to get in an upright position.

3.     Get your child as high up as possible

One of the most important things for getting a comfortable fit for your onbuhimo is to have your child really high up on your back! My husband was wondering for a long time why he couldn’t get our onbuhimo to fit him well, until he noticed me tightening the straps all the way. Once he tried this himself, he found that it made a huge difference. Try and tighten your shoulder straps all the way and see if this makes it more comfortable for you.

4.     Spread the fabric

To make the onbuhimo comfortable for your child, make sure to spread the fabric of the carrier from knee to knee (or as wide as possible if your child’s legs are too long). Also check that the extra flap of fabric is tucked up between your back and your child’s belly. This will help keep your child secure in the carrier.

5.     Move the chest clip

Your chest clip might start out being very high up on your throat while the shoulder straps haven’t been tightened yet. Once you have tightened your shoulder straps, the chest clip should come down to a comfortable position between your breasts and your neck on the bony part of your chest. If you feel that it is too low or too high, move it up or down along the shoulder straps.

What about you?

Have you tried an onbuhimo yet? Let me know what you thought about it!


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