Hold-On Handle Works Like a Charm
When I first heard about Hold-on Handles, a handle your toddler is supposed to grasp while walking beside a stroller, my mind went straight to the explosion of discarded toys littering the floor of nearly every room in my house. My two year old loves to carry things around, but he also loves to drop whatever he is carrying without hesitation or warning. So the notion that I could expect him to keep a grip on a plastic handle dangling from the side of a stroller for any more than about 15 seconds sounded absurd. Well call me stunned!
Before I opened the box, I showed it to my child and got him excited about holding on to the bright red ladybug. I explained that was his special ladybug, and immediately he latched on and was ready to go, despite the fact we weren’t even out the door yet. Several times since opening the box I found him sitting and holding onto “his ladybug.” The novelty of the ladybug versus a plain handle was very valuable. I don’t imagine the latter would have held as much appeal.
As we set out on our pioneer trip, I attached the Hold-on Handle to the side of a stroller, popped our newborn in, grabbed the two-year old and headed out the door for a walk around town. Surprisingly, our toddler didn’t hesitate to grab onto the smooth colorful handle and maintain a good grip while we walked. I can’t explain why or how, but this thing really works.
Anyone who has tried to hold a toddler’s hand while also pushing a stroller knows that it’s not going to go very well. The parent ends up hunched to one side to reach the toddler while their other hand maintains a death-grip on the stroller. Throw a bump, rough surface or curve into the path and there’s no telling where the stroller will go.
Attempts to get a toddler to keep one hand on the stroller while you walk usually won’t pan out well either. Their little arms are just too short. They need to walk so close to the stroller that it’s too easy to run over a tiny foot. Thanks to the adjustable-length lead of the Hold-on Handle, our toddler could swing his arms while he walked, drift back and forth a bit, and change speed, all without causing the stroller to get tugged off-course.
I was a bit hesitant about the strength of the buckle that held the strap together. It is a simple plastic locking buckle that sometimes can easily slip out of place. Given the size of my 32 pound toddler, I was worried he could pull it apart if he so chose. With all my strength, I gave the buckle a good pull test before trying it with my son, and happily the buckle stayed in place.
Naturally this product isn’t going to keep a child from running off all of the sudden to chase a butterfly or reach for some shiny fun-looking object. But I was impressed with how hesitant our toddler was to let go of the handle. All the same, if walking near dangerous traffic or in a big crowd, I’d grab the child’s hand. But for the typical walk downtown or through the mall, the Hold-on Handle is amazing.
The only drawback that I encountered with this product is that, when collapsing/expanding a stroller, the Hold-on Handle may get tangled up with the stroller making for a difficult wresting match. This can also be an issue when stowing/removing the stroller from a vehicle trunk. The Hold-on may want to snag on other items and fight you a bit. But once you get used to it, simply remembering to pop the handle into a stroller pocket will keep it out of your way when not in use.
With an MSRP of a penny under $20, the price seems fair for the value you’ll get from this product. As a parent of a newborn whose hands are often more full than they should be, the Hold-on Handle was a valuable addition to our collection of childcare gear.
Hold-On-Handles for Strollers and Walking
Price: $19.99 for single handle
Available in multiple styles and colors
|Ease of Use||5|
|I Would Purchase This for Myself||yes|
|I would Purchase This as a Gift||yes|
All ratings on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the highest.
Meet The Reviewer!
Stephen Craig is a father of three boys
ages 5, 2 and 2 months. He is a Quality
System and Regulatory Affairs Specialist
for Chemetrics Inc., and enjoys spending
time with his wife and boys, mountain
biking, cooking and eating.