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Guava Family Roam Stroller Review: For Running Families
By Chief Editor Matt Klein 

Although my daughter is now 6 months old, I began looking into running strollers long before she even came into this world. My wife and I have spent our entire relationship training together, so being able to continue that important time together with a child was important to us. I scoured the internet looking for reviews on different running strollers. I saw things I liked and others that scared me (like tires popping or deflating). Finally after seeing Neely Gracy break the women's world stroller mile record in this stroller with airless tires, I decided to give the Guava Roam Stroller a try. 650 miles of stroller running later, I can confidently say this is one of the best purchases I have ever made.

Guava Family Roam Stroller
Price: $549.95 at Guava Family
Weight: 12.9 kg, 28.5 lbs
Max Weight Capacity: 27.2 kg, 60 lbs


The Guava Family Roam Stroller is a running and daily stroller for parents wanting to do serious miles and daily activities with their little ones. The airless tires provide long-lasting durability on mostly smooth surfaces at a variety of speeds. While not the lightest running stroller, the three-wheel design and large steering bar provide a sturdy, tough, and stable ride that makes you feel confident your little one is safe. Storage abounds in this stroller with several pouches and areas to store necessities, eliminating the need to carry an extra pack and providing plenty of space for on run nutrition and fluids. Several accessories make this far more versatile, with a rain shield for wet weather and a warm footmuff cover for cold weather that also adds additional security. A solid, secure choice for both recreational and serious runners, the Guava Family Roam Stroller is for those who want to bring the whole family along for training and adventures. 


The Guava Family Roam Stroller is a combination performance running and daily stroller. It weighs 28 lbs not including the child or anything you carry in the many pockets or the bottom carrier. The stroller itself feels sturdy and stable regardless of terrain. The independent suspension makes it feel extremely smooth on normal road, mildly bumpy road and smooth trails. It has a little trouble with rocky terrain and gravel at running paces but at walking and casual paces it does fine. It can handle all types of runs from easy/recovery paces to faster workout paces. I have done intervals on a track, fartleks on the roads, hill repeats, tempo runs and even some time trials (no races yet) and the Roam Stroller has done great.

Hills are especially challenging given the extra weight but I have found I have become far stronger overall doing hill repeats and long hill runs using the stroller. Easy and long runs have been the best. It feels comfortable while jogging and easy to control. My longest run has been 14 miles and control stayed consistent over that entire time. My fastest paces have been at a 4:30 mile pace for 1 min (downhill), a 5:21 mile on the track and a 10:58 two mile on the road. The sturdiness does mean that it is slightly slow to changes paces but once you get there, the Roam Stroller holds it well. These fast paces have all been in relatively straight lines, which feel stable and good. There is a mechanism to lock the front wheel straight, which reduces the need to stabilize the stroller on long straight efforts. This can be unlocked for more adjusting to twists and turns.

Turning is fine when running at easy paces. However, when turning quickly you have to be careful as the front wheel can sometimes get caught or catch. This is easy to control if you have both hands on the handlebar but can be a little scary the first time. Wider turns take care of this, so make sure you have enough space when making turns. Regardless of turning or going straight, the suspension keeps my daughter comfortable regardless of pace. Even during fast runs, she has been totally calm or slept. The gentle ride is a great way for her to get some extra rest, although she also enjoys staying awake, babbling and taking in the scenery. She slept through my 2 mile time trial running 5:34 then 5:24 miles back to back, so the suspension and sturdiness do a great job of minimizing any bounce or roughness from the road.

The Roam Stroller itself, despite being almost 30 lbs, is durable and easily foldable. It easily folds in on itself and we have traveled both in cars and in planes. I did purchase the travel case, which was a bit disappointing as the topped ripped on our second major plane trip. This has not affected the outer cover/carrier's ability to hold the stroller, but aesthetically it is annoying. It is too big to be taken on the plane but I checked it for free as our "daily stroller" every time without issue. I currently have 650 miles on the stroller as of the time of this review. The airless tires have been awesome as I have not had to worry about them popping (a major concern with other brands that led me to Guava). They have barely any wear despite some soft ground use. I expect well over 1500-2000 miles before they need to be replaced. All three wheels are detachable but I am not sure where to get replacements (I'll email Guava about that). Everything else on the stroller has been durable. The bottom carrier does not have any rips and has several pockets for gels, food, etc. Even when wet, the Roam stroller dries fairly well. The handlebar foam has not frayed at all and there are not loose seams anywhere on the stroller. So far, this has definitely been worth the price!


As a new parent, the first thing my wife and I checked is when it was truly appropriate to begin running with our daughter. Guava suggests that you wait until months to begin running with your child. Our pediatrician (MD) and a pediatric physical therapist specialist (DPT, PCS) suggested that it was safe to carefully start when our daughter had independent head and trunk control. Thanks to some fast development on our daughter's part (and some early intervention from me), she had independent head and trunk control long before we started at 4 months (she actually had almost independent head control within a few weeks of age).

Regardless, we initially started with a one mile run, which she enjoyed and had no complaints during or after (we monitored her for 2 hours after for any signs of distress and she was fine). We then slowly progressed mileage and began doing normal 6-8 mile runs by 4 weeks. Our only issue initially was that Isabella was too small to fit at 4 months. The Run Performance Footmuff helped her fit and kept her warm during our initial winter running. Unless you live in extremely hot climates, I would suggest this extra accessory as it helped her fit more securely in the stroller. When she falls asleep, her head still falls laterally (to the side) quite a bit, so there is not great passive head support in the stroller. This is easily fixed by carrying an extra jacket that we roll up and support her head in neutral on whatever side it tilts to when she sleeps. In regards to weather, the footmuff and the waterproof cover have kept our daughter both warm and dry. We have run in low 30-degree temperatures (Fahrenheit, 0 degrees Celsius) and thanks to the Footmuff, our daughter was the only one of the three of us that stayed warm. It is adjustable, meaning we can fully cover her with the footmuff zipped up or we can leave it unzipped so it still surrounds and cushions her but she doesn't get hot. We have run in pouring rain in both Southern California and Oregon and she has remained completely dry under the rain cover (again... she stays more dry than we do despite our supposedly waterproof jackets). The rain cover also doubles as a wind cover and easily protects our little one from the elements.

From a safety standpoint, the sturdiness of the Guava Roam Stroller was a major selling point. I have never had the stroller come remotely close to tipping over as the extra weight is shifted toward the bottom. The based has a good amount of width and since the tires are airless, there has never been a concern they would pop. The securing straps are adjustable, have additional pads around the waist for security and the clips have a two-step releasing mechanism. There is plenty of security for our daughter to help secure her trunk and pelvis. However, the child does need to have head control as there are no additional measures to help with that. The adjustable straps stay secure, do not slip and Isabella is not able to release them. They fit comfortably on her due to being slightly wide and the additional padding in the back sits comfortable against her. We have checked for pressure sores even after 14-mile (~2 hours) runs and the padding in the back of the seat has easily protected her skin.

While our daughter is secured well in the Guava Roam, there are a few things to pay attention to from a safety perspective. As mentioned, running in straight lines with the Guava Roam is completely fine. I generally use one hand at a time while the other swings normally and switch every 30-60 seconds regardless of pace. When turning, I use both hands due to several instances where the front tire has caught or skidding with quick maneuvers. This has never happened with gradual turns or going straight, but has happened with quick turns. This is something to pay attention to and a reason to keep both hands on the handle bar during unstable terrain or side to side motions. There is no hand brake on the handle bar. All starting and stopping must be controlled by the "driver." The handle bar is adjustable and can be angle at neutral, low and high positions. I have used the neutral positions for everything, although those with wrist sensitivities may want to adjust accordingly. There is a brake just inside of the right wheel. This is not something that should be engage while in movement, but is more of a locking mechanism to keep the stroller from moving when parked. It is fairly easy to engage, but can sometimes take some effort to unlock. There is a wrist strap that can be attached to one arm while moving, however I have not used it since I switch off which arm I use while running to maintain as natural of a running posture/position as possible. 

Thoughts as a DPT: The Biomechanics of Stroller Running
By Matthew Klein
As a physical therapist and biomechanics PhD student, I have been acutely aware of the impacts of stroller running on my running form and mechanics. There was a learning curve to learning to run and control the stroller, which fortunately was not too hard due to how sturdy the stroller is. Controlling my own body was something I had to learn. Pushing the stroller provides a fantastic workout no matter what pace you are going. It is harder to run with a stroller, especially up hills. This has provided a huge boost to my training as it can be like running with a weight sled going uphill. I am now hitting tempo and interval paces that were previously my normal "non-stroller" paces which makes me beyond excited to see what my daughter and I can do with continued training. 

Throughout this, I have attempted to find the optimal running technique. Research on this topic has found that stroller running with one hand may slightly decrease speed and stride length, while using a two-handed technique is not statistically different speed and stride length wise from running without a stroller (Alcantara & Wall-Schefler, 2017). However, holding on with two hands the entire time eliminates the important trunk rotation that normally occurs with arm swing. The trunk rotation helps with optimal spinal, pelvic and hip motion, so I did not want to sacrifice that. I eventually settled on a technique of using one hand to grip and direct the stroller while the other swung. I then switch off every 30-60 seconds to the other side to keep things even. This took a few weeks but now feels completely automatic and normal to do even at race paces.  

There is some literature on the effects of stroller running on biomechanics. As I can attest to, there is a much higher energetic cost when pushing strollers, particularly uphill (Sandbakk et al., 2020). Stride length may reduce and stride rate may increase on both flat and uphill, although some of the research is conflicting on this and suggests that stride length and cadence do not change (Mickel et al,. 2016; O'Sullivan et al., 2016; Sandbakk et al., 2020). Plantar pressures also decrease especially in the forefoot, likely due to the decreased stride length as well as weight bearing through the handlebars to control the stroller (Micketl et al., 2016). From a biomechanics standpoint, running with a stroller may cause increased forward trunk lean, decrease trunk rotation, decrease trunk side-bending motion at submaximal (easy) running efforts, slightly decrease hip extension, while the knee and ankle appear not to be impacted (O'Sullivan et al., 2016). This is interesting as a forward trunk lean tends to increase gluteal muscle activation, thus this condition may require additional hip/gluteal strengthening (Farrokhi et al., 2008).

So while it is important to be aware of the changes that occur with a stroller, many of these may improve your non-stroller running fitness. Hill training is a fantastic way to get an extra boost, so do not be afraid of them despite how hard they are. Given most of the kinematic changes occur at the hip, working on hip strengthening as a preventative measure may be helpful. Finally, deciding between a two handed and single handed technique should include whether you want to spend extra time working on trunk rotation or if you want to spend a little extra time to adjust while getting some extra inherent core stabilization (one arm will require additional core control) during your running. Regardless of what you decide, adding a stroller to your training not only allows you to run with your child, it will definitely improve your fitness. 


Alcantara, R. S., & Wall-Scheffler, C. M. (2017). Stroller running: energetic and kinematic changes across pushing methods. Plos One12(7), e0180575.

Farrokhi, S., Pollard, C. D., Souza, R. B., Chen, Y. J., Reischl, S., & Powers, C. M. (2008). Trunk position influences the kinematics, kinetics, and muscle activity of the lead lower extremity during the forward lunge exercise. Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy38(7), 403-409.

Mickel, C., Baltrusch, A., Holzgreve, F., Maltry, L., Hartmann, H., Keiner, M., & Wirth, K. (2016). Changes in Plantar Pressure While Running with a Jogging Stroller. Journal of Functional Morphology and Kinesiology1(3), 314-321.

O'Sullivan, R., Kiernan, D., & Malone, A. (2016). Run kinematics with and without a jogging stroller. Gait & Posture43, 220-224.

Sandbakk, Ø., Perl, R., Holmberg, H. C., & Steiner, T. (2020). Energetic Cost and Kinematics of Pushing a Stroller on Flat and Uphill Terrain. Frontiers in Physiology11, 574.


I would highly recommend the Guava Roam Stroller for road and track mileage with your little one. It is best to check with your pediatrician/pediatric clinical specialist physical therapist first before starting to run with your child. However, this has been an incredible way to spend extra time together as a family doing something we love. The sturdiness of the stroller, the airless tires, foldability/portability, and ability to tolerate a variety of paces (even faster ones) were the major selling points that led me to purchase this stroller over others. This versatility has been great for everything from easy jogs to 14-mile long runs to low 5-minute-per-mile pace fast efforts. The extra accessories, especially the footmuff and rain cover, have been must-haves for continuing to bring our daughter with us no matter what they weather throws our way. Running with this stroller has not only allowed my family to continue training together, it has also made me far stronger both with and without it. The extra challenge on hills and new "times" have made running more exciting that it ever has been. If this is something you are interested in and sturdiness, durability, portability, storage (for extra gear/nutrition/fluids) and pace versatility are important to you, I would highly suggest the Guava Family Roam Stroller.


Performance: A- (Sturdy stroller that can handle easy to faster paces and longer efforts. Not the lightest stroller but does fold up efficiently and handles both running and causal use)
Safety: B+/A- (Stable and sturdy. No hand breaks require self-management to stop and front tire sometimes gets caught when turning quickly)
DPT/Design: B+ (Would highly suggest hand brake for safety if possible. Front wheel needs some sort of mechanism to stop it from catching/spinning out during quick turns. Outside of those, this is a highly sturdy and stable design that does great for a variety of paces and efforts with plenty of storage. A little lighter would be nice but not at the sacrifice of all the incredible features. Foldability and portability is also great. May want to suggest to parents of younger children the Footmuff can be used to take up extra space)
Personal: A (This is my first running stroller and it has been the best investment I have ever made. The security for my daughter is awesome combined with an incredible amount of storage and accessories that make it something that can go almost anywhere my wife and I run)
Overall: A- 


Guava Running Stroller
Price: $549.95 at Guava

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Editor's Note: As always, the views presented on this website belong to myself or the selected few who contribute to these posts. This website should not and does not serve as a replacement for seeking medical care. If you are currently injured or concerned about an injury, please see your
local running physical therapist. If you are in the Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Danbury and Stevens Point areas, we am currently taking clients for running evaluations.

***Disclaimer: This running stroller was purchased with a 10% discount utilizing personal funds.  This in no way affected the honesty of this review. We systematically put each type of shoe, or in this case stroller, through certain runs prior to review. For trainers and performance trainers, we take them on daily runs, workouts, recovery runs and a long run prior to review (often accumulating anywhere from 20-50 miles in the process). For racing flats we ensure that we have completed intervals, a tempo or steady state run as well as a warm-up and cool down in each pair prior to review. For this stroller, as mentioned above, I have put it through every type of workout and run on the road and track. I have also put over 500 miles on this stroller during testing. This systematic process is to ensure that we have experience with each shoe in a large variety of conditions to provide expansive and thorough reviews for the public and for companies. Our views are based on our extensive history in the footwear industry and years testing and developing footwear. If you are a footwear rep looking for footwear reviews or consultations on development, we are currently looking to partner with companies to assist, discuss and promote footwear models. Partnership will not affect the honesty of our reviews.

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