Here at LTBN HQ we really love ring slings, and we know that lots and lots of you do too. In the context of baby carriers overall, ring slings are easy to use, great for both newborn snuggles as well and those quick up-and-downs with toddlers, plus they fold up nice and small to fit easily in a bag when you're out and about on the go.
Ring slings are fairly versatile too - there are many carrying options with a ring sling. You can carry your baby in a ring sling in the following four ways:
- a full front carry
- a hip carry
- an off-centre carry with a twist at the back
- hip carry with shoulder flip & rings at the back.
You can also (with guidance and practice) use a ring sling in a back carry position.
An older baby will sit more on your hip for a full hip carry, whereas a smaller baby will sit more 'off centre' on your front.
The key to happy carrying with a ring sling is to take your time - the more time you take to prepare the sling first, means the less to do once baby is in.
Some people don't see the attraction of ring slings (common issues include getting the sling 'just right', and discomfort with the weight of the sling only on one shoulder), but there are a few things to remember that will help you adjust your ring sling really nicely, and help you fall head over heels in love with it:
- Use the pouch to set the seat - some call it a perch, a rope, or a band - use it by setting it behind the baby's knees, in a straight line from one knee to the other. This will help create that nice deep seat that you want.
- Only walk just enough fabric up the baby's back, i.e. only just enough to the bottom of the baby's neck.
- When adjusting the fabric (either up the baby's back or through the rings), always try to lift the baby's weight - imagine you're doing the robot dance - your arm is bent at the elbow so that your forearm is in a horizontal line and parallel with the baby's bottom. Supporting the baby in this way will ease the pressure of the fabric in the rings of the sling, allowing it to be more easily adjusted.
- Always work any excess fabric from around your back towards the rings.
- Adjust the excess fabric through the rings in a horizontal motion - going in the direction the fabric has come from. The fabric will move through the rings with much greater ease.
Baby Ring Sling Positions Pro Tips
Pro Tip 1
if you find the fabric that runs under your armpit digs in a little, or rides up, opt for the carry with the twist on the back.
Pro Tip 2
If you're carrying soon after birth, opt for a slightly off-centre carry. This prevents all the downward pressure being carried on the soft-tissue.
Pro Tip 3
If you have a an older baby that’s at the up and down stage, a ring sling is a fantastic option for quick in and out carrying, with no bulky sling to carry around.
These tips aren't an exclusive or exhaustive list - if you have a system or method that works for you (obviously, safely), then great! Ring slings are fantastic, and once you get the hang of them they are one of the easiest types of slings to use.
If you’d like one to one advice on using a ring sling, then we offer several different types of consultation to suit you and your family.