The biggest problem with piggyback rides ⏤ other than that kids are always asking for them ⏤ is that they can do a number on a parents’ back. But what if there was a way for both kids and parents to enjoy a spirited ride around the neighborhood? That’s the thinking behind the Piggyback Rider Explorer Standing Child Carrier.
The premise is simple: Parent wears the carrier like a backpack while the toddler (age 2- to 4-years-old/up to 50 lbs.) stands on an integrated aluminum foot bar on the back. Said toddler is strapped into an attached safety harness, and has four handholds to grip. That foot bar is adjustable to the child’s height and rocks a non-skid coating to help prevent slipping. The entire setup shifts most of the weight to the carrier’s shoulders. Which means you can walk upright rather than hunched over, and thus give longer piggyback rides — and spend less time getting reset at the chiropractor.
The $120 Explorer weighs around three pounds, comes in two colors (orange and black), and includes an emergency whistle. Also, both the carrier and the child’s safety harness are actual backpacks complete with BPA-free hydration bladders. Mudflaps, side pockets, padded hip belts, and water bottle holders can also be added for a little extra cash. Or, if you want to save money, there are two slimmed down models ⏤ the Scout and the Explorer-O Urban ⏤ that sell for about $30 less.