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Michael: How Bushwalking Transformed My Family

Michael: How Bushwalking Transformed My Family

April 09, 2018

Michael and his wife Rachel welcomed a son, named Jack, shortly after Michael's 36th birthday. Before the baby's arrival, Michael had always been an outdoorsy type, spending his free time running and rock climbing. However, caring for a newborn took its toll on Michael's fitness level. With all of the sleepless nights and general parenting duties, Michael's physical fitness efforts fell by the wayside, leaving him out of shape and causing him to feel lethargic much of the time.

By Jack's first birthday, he had begun walking, and Michael found that he no longer had the energy he needed to keep up with his growing bub. He decided that he had been out of the fitness game for long enough and that it was time to get back in shape, both for himself and his family.

Trial and Error

He purchased a BOB Ironman running pram and took to the streets around his home with little Jack. However, Jack was not a big fan of the running pram and fussed whenever he was strapped in, making it difficult for Michael to enjoy his runs. Furthermore, Michael missed the serenity of being out in the bush.

Next, Michael bought a used backpack carrier. Unfortunately, the torso area was not adjustable, leaving Michael's shoulders sore after less than an hour. Not only that, but baby Jack almost fell out of the carrier when Michael stumbled on one of his hikes. The poorly designed harness did not provide the security and protection Jack needed. Needless to say, that was the last time Michael used the carrier.

Discouraged and frustrated, Michael didn't know what to do. He wanted to have Jack join him in his quest for fitness and spending time outdoors, but none of the methods he had tried so far had been successful. Luckily, fate would soon step in and change the course of the family's life forever.

The Turning Point

On holiday in Falls Creek, Michael and Rachel met Petr, Marie and their young son, Sebastian, while out at a cafe. While the little ones played, the parents got to talking, and Michael noticed that Petr had a baby hiking carrier. Instantly reminded of his horrible experience, Michael told Petr all about it.

Petr nodded and shared the story how he started the business with baby carriers when he wanted to continue with the active lifestyle he had before children. Petr took his 7-months-old bub and Marie on a road trip to the Kimberley in Western Australia and tested the carrier on many hikes. Michael couldn't believe that it was even possible to go on that kind of holiday.

Michael wanted to have the same type of experience with his own family, enabling him to enjoy bushwalking without having to leave his little one and wife at home. Now that Jack was 18 months old, he didn't want to sit in the pram anymore but wasn't yet ready to walk on his own. Michael purchased a hiking carrier from Petr, bought some new hiking boots, scheduled a bit of time off work and booked a holiday in Queensland. Soon after, the family set off on their adventure.

Over the course of the three-week trip, Michael found that the experience had completely transformed his family. Now, the three of them could enjoy the wonders of nature together, letting Michael satisfy his thirst for the bush, stay in shape and share his passion with his young son. Jack walked, toddled and scrambled when he could, but Petr's carrier was always at the ready when he got tired or the trail got a bit too difficult. By the end of the trip, Jack was different. He has gained confidence and is a bit more independent.


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