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Categories: Good reviews. Tags:

Pushchairs for tall people: bugaboo cameleon review

September 11, 2008 25 Comments

Update: Someone stole our Bugaboo pushchair from outside a church. Can you believe it?!? I'm looking for a tall thief ...

I'm tall - 6 foot 4. Pushing pushchairs gives me backache as (1) I have to bend over because the handles aren't high enough and (2) I have to try and stand back from the pushchair otherwise I kick the axle. These two aims conflict.

Very few pushchairs are designed for tall people.

The ideal pushchair for tall people

After a lot of trial and error - in shops, borrowing other people's pushchairs, buying the wrong ones, reading pushchair reviews - I've decided there is only one pushchair for tall people: the bugaboo cameleon.

Yes, it's expensive. But the handle extends so high that I don't have to bend, and I don't kick the axle. The key thing about the handle is that it extends, rather than rotates. Pushchairs with handles that rotate are useless if you're tall - although the handle becomes higher, it also makes you stand nearer the pushchair. So you kick it.

No other pushchair comes close to the Bugaboo Cameleon if you're tall.

No axle pushchairs - Quinny and Stokke

You might think that a pushchair with no axle would be good for tall people, such as the Quinny. The problem with Quinnys is that if you put the shopping bag underneath, it goes where the axle would be ... so you kick it.

The Stokke Xplory is another option if you're tall. This is probably as good as the Bugaboo, although I haven't used one that much so I can't promise. It does look a bit wierd though - still, we bought the bloom fresco highchair, so what do we know!


If you're tall, what do you think? (And if you're interested, check out my review of the maxi cosi priorifix).

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25 Comments »

  • r says:

    The back axle would be a problem if I wanted to power walk but other wise the Mamas and Papas Skate was looking good for me (6'1") as the height of the seat came up and down as well as the handle height. So you can have the handle at a good height and still reach the child. Was a bit pricy for me and I am looking for a 3 wheeler. Otherwise it woould be my first choice.

  • Michelle says:

    I can't believe that someone would actually a pushchair, and from outside a church. That's appalling.

    I hadn't realised that there was such an issue with the Stokke and Quinny if you're a taller man and woman, but now you've said I can see the problem - hopefully manufacturers will catch on soon and build more suited for the taller parent!

  • The Voice of Reason says:

    Agree totally with this. I'm 6'4" and every other pushchair we tried, I kicked. I still kick the bugaboo every now and then and it annoys me intensly every time so I think I'd be half insane by now if we'd bought a different model.

    We've also got a Quinny Speedi SX 3-wheeler for muddy walks and light off-roading which isn't too bad but could do with just that bit of a longer handle extension to make it perfect.

  • I believe the Cameleon is a pretty damn good pushchair, but as a tall person myself I found the Maclaren Techno XT to be a pretty good contender as far as baby pushchairs and prams go. Interesting article too, keep it up the good work!

  • Sam says:

    We've got the Bugaboo Bee which is also good. My husband is 6"6 and it seems to be fine too.

  • [...] You might also be interested in my bloom fresco review, and my bugaboo cameleon review. [...]

  • Gabriel says:

    I am 6' 6" and got a Jane Nomad Pro and it is really good, I have never kicked it or had any problems.

    Biggest problems I had whilst testing were:

    Gracos
    Phil and Teds (awful design unless you are a midget!)
    Chiccos

    It has got a really good swivel handle that lets you change the position and height (3 options) and this does it for me. It is also very light and about half the price of the Bugaboo (if you know where to look).

  • Anne says:

    I'm 6ft, hubby 6ft 3 we use the Mutsy urban rider handle height 114cm at top extension. Icandy apple and icandy pear are long too. I wish they would state handle height on details in catalogues and on web sites, just sayind it's adjustable means nothing.

  • Dani says:

    I'm 5'10" and my husband is 6'4" and we had the same problem - we have gone for the iCandy Apple and that is great - comfortable for both of us, and the handle extends very easily with just one button so we can get it perfect for each of us. I also don't kick the back of the pram, even with the shopping basket underneath and the change bag hanging on the back :-)

    I want a lightweight buggy for travel though and can't find any with adjustable handles for under £100 - any suggestions?

  • Anne says:

    We found that a tough one too, ended up with an unberella foldind Jane which has higher handle bars than most but isn't really tall enough. I think some of the hauk modles are heigh handled, they have a sister brand, coocoo or somthing that look good.

  • Jo says:

    I have a maclaren techno xlr and I think its fab, Im 6'3 and my husband is 6'6 and we've never had a problem with it.
    I even managed to fit a ride along board to the back for my 3 year old and although not great it wasnt too much of a pain and I only kicked it a few times lol

  • Suki says:

    Oh it's been a joy to find this blog and realise my partner (6'4") and I (6'1") are not alone in wanting a tall person's buggy that doesn't involve adjusting our gait to suit the stupid axle, or just putting up with it and breaking our backs!

    We've been through 4 buggy/pram/things and 1 separate adjustable handle (didn't work). The 2 we currently have in use are the best of a bad lot! We're looking for both a sturdy buggy/pram/thing and a little, lightweight run-about job, and our second problem is that contrary to what the manufacturers think, we don't have a fortune to spend. So thank you to everyone for your suggestions, I shall now investigate your recommendations.

  • My husband is 6'4" and we have had both an icandy Apple and a Bugaboo Cameleon and I have to say my husband prefers the latter by quite a margin, you need to try other peoples though really (if you can) to get an idea of the perfect one for you.

  • Hannah says:

    Any body got any tips for a lightweight travel buggy that folds up small? I'm 6ft tall and kick pretty much every buggy I've pushed, although my mothercare my3 isn't too bad. (I'd agree with what was said about handles that extend rather than tilt being best). Bought a quinny zapp, but didn't realise it didn't recline, need one for my 3 month old son to lie back in.

  • Dani says:

    Hi Hannah, I spent ages looking for a lightweight travel buggy that folds up small and also suits a tall person (see my previous post above on Nov 28th). In the end I went for a Mclaren Techno XT which reclines fully, and folds up reasonably small (not as small as some, but much smaller than the iCandy!). I bought it 2nd hand and got it for £70, have used it since my LO was 3 months old and she seems very comfy in it, sleeps in it no problem.

  • Suki says:

    Further to my post here in December, we have now bought a Mothercare Pick & Mix stroller, which was £60 for the frame and wrapper (seat, hood etc). It's pretty good for the money, though of course it's nowhere near as flash as some. It's suitable from 6 months - 15kgs, which suits us fine, but doesn't solve the problem for parents of younger babies and/or fat toddlers.

    Of course there are a few flaws - I can't seem to get the seat to go totally upright, and the rain cover is a bit tricky to attach and probably wouldn't be great in a big rain storm. But the buggy is quite hardy; we've been off-roading with it and it's lived to tell the tale!

    The handles could do with being a bit higher, but for the money they're great. Amazingly, nowhere in the all the blurb about it does it mention having taller than normal handles - we found it quite by chance. But it's now my preferred buggy.

  • Jasmine says:

    I've bought a Mothercare Pick & Mix stroller, which was £60 for the frame and wrapper (seat, hood etc). It's pretty good for the money, though of course it's nowhere near as flash as some. It's suitable from 6 months - 15kgs, which suits us fine, but doesn't solve the problem for parents of younger babies and/or fat toddlers.

    Of course there are a few flaws - I can't seem to get the seat to go totally upright, and the rain cover is a bit tricky to attach and probably wouldn't be great in a big rain storm. But the buggy is quite hardy; we've been off-roading with it and it's lived to tell the tale!

    The handles could do with being a bit higher, but for the money they're great. Amazingly, nowhere in the all the blurb about it does it mention having taller than normal handles - we found it quite by chance.

  • Barbara says:

    I am 6'1" and my husband is 6'4" and we ended up buying a Stokke Xplory. It was by far and away the best pushchair for us. There's no rear bar to kick, and the handle extends high enough for us (and small enough for my 5'0" mother-in-law to push comfortably as well). Best of all the height of the carrycot (optional for newborns) and pram seat (can be used for newborns upwards) adjusts as well. This means that unlike other pushchairs with a high handle, I can reach over and tend to my son as he is also high up too! (We found that other pushchairs with a high handle had a lower carrycot for the baby, meaning you couldn't lean over the handle to adjust a blanket, etc, without doing damage to your innards!!).

    It's easy to fold, really portable, and you can get maxi-cosi adaptors for it as well so you can put your car seat directly on to the chassis as well, which is really handy in the early days. It definitely looks unusual and we always get admiring looks when we're out and about! But if you don't mind swimming against the tide in terms of the normal run-of-the-mill kind of prams, then I'd definitely 100% recommend it for any mum- or dad- to be!

  • Laura says:

    Found all this a very interesting ready, am starting to look for a travel system for baby no.3. I'm 5ft 11 and by hubby is 6ft 5. We've had a bugaboo gecko in the past and currently a phil n teds sport. The gecko wasnt quite high enough and we also found the pram to sit very low. I detest the phil and teds and kick it every time i use it, dont know how people cope with the 2nd seat attached without causing damage!
    Mamas and papas have just launched the Mylo, huge handle height, but not sure i want to spend £700 :( . Seems you have to be prepared to pay a lot more for high handles. I will continue my search and look at some of your recommendations.

  • Andie says:

    Interesting reading - we used the bugaboo cameleon too and I agree its great for tall parents....unfortunately our tall daughter didn't last in it though! We had to move on to a mothercare basic pushchair which allowed her to be taller and still covered up when it rains!

  • Interesting discussion - the Cameleon seems to be the chair of choice for taller people, but it is harder for couples who are very different heights. In most cases we find parents seem far more concerned on how small a pushchair will fold into a car, than how easy it is to push. It is sad to say it, but I get the impression the ratio of push miles, to car miles is decreasing all the time...

    • Dani says:

      that's a good point about how easy it is to fold down - while we still love our iCandy apple it is very big when folded, I can't get anything else in the boot at the same time really which is why I ended up with the McLaren XT. Now that my daughter is 18 months she's getting heavy (she is of course tall like her parents ;-) ) so the iCandy is getting harder to maneouvre, particularly for the grandparents, so the McLaren is being used more and more. We live walking distance from town so our push miles are much higher than our car miles, and that does influence your choice of pushchair I'm sure. I guess one size doesn't fit all, even if we are all tall...

  • Jeni says:

    Partner and I are having a nightmare trying to find a reasonably priced travel system which accommodates me (5'4") and my other half (6'1").

    With our son we were given three second hand prams and later ended up purchasing another two simply down to not being able to find a tall enough handle height (hubby stayed at home for first year so suffered lots of back ache :P ). The last we purchased was the maclaren techno xt. Its only a buggy and wasn't cheap, about 179 in a sale but it's perfect and well built enough to stand a beating to boot!

    Only thing is, I would prefer to have a travel system for our second (now on the way) and something well built and cosy. Our options so far seem to be the mutsy (annoyingly 700 new and not available anywhere near us) or a friend recommended a brand called teutonia which also has a relatively high handle. Very much prefer the mutsy for the carry cot height though so think it's definately going to be Ebay for us.

  • Anita says:

    Have bought a out n about double 360 nipper and while it has great manouevreability compared to the icandy pear, the height of the pushchair is a problem, although it is fine for me at 5'11 and even my husband at 6'3 I was hoping to go running with it, which I would imagine could end up very uncomfortable!! Does anyone know of a good handlebar extender for people who already have their buggy?
    Your comments would be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks

  • winniewoo says:

    gosh cant believe there are others like me.
    i worked for mcare for 17 years and the number of request for taller handle pushchairs was more than enough for the no 1 baby retailer to look into producing one ( imagine the sales if they had)
    I have a hauk rio travel system and im 6ft1,the handles pull up to make it higher and i can just manage however the locking system to keep the handles there is a bit hit and miss and either one slides back to lower position when walking which drives me insane.Took it back to store and they replaced it for me only to find other handle doing it now SCREAM.
    Yes the mcalren techno is a lot taller but cant believe the price for a stroller.

    would also love a handle extender fitment if there is one out there.
    perhaps we sholud all get together and invent one!

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