Mei Tai High Back Carry

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alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483
Mei Tai High Back Carry

I was asked recently about back carries with a mei tai. High back carries are good for smaller babies once you adventure into the world of back carrying (they need great head and neck control at minimum) and it great for when you don't want to tie the waist knot at your belly (upset stomach, pregnancy, etc). Aiden likes it because he can see over my shoulder.


High Back Carry


I tied the waist knot just below my boobs. When Aiden was smaller I would sometimes tie it above my boobs!

And to compare, here's a picture of back carry with the waist straps tied at my waist:

I didn't do it this time, but it is possible to tie a chest belt for many people when doing a high back carry, which helps some people back carry for longer. If you're having issues with being comfortable with back carries, chest bests often help.
One version of a chest belt:

Another version of a chest belt (sometime called 'tibetan'):

You can also buy separate piece best belts or steal one from a SSC (soft sided carrier).

HTHs. Smile

AnnaRO's picture
Joined: 07/06/08
Posts: 7033

That's awesome!

I got one in my home-made mai tai carrier of when I am pg. This one is a little lower, but DD is bigger here (about 12-13 months) and I tied it below my belly.

ETA: I cropped that. Maybe it'll catch up to itself.

AnnaRO's picture
Joined: 07/06/08
Posts: 7033

Jackie, I'm sorry but that tibetan does not look very comfortable.

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

Anna that's a great picture for BWing while pregnant! Thanks so much for sharing. Smile

"AnnaRO" wrote:

Jackie, I'm sorry but that tibetan does not look very comfortable.

It actually is for some people, but not all! I personally can't stand for mei tai straps to be crossed in the front, but the shoulder straps eventually hurt my armpits without a chest belt. 'Tibetan' tying helps me a lot. But I know others who think it's crazy. Can't hurt to try it though Anna if you've got enough strap length!

I should find a better picture for it though than what I posted. It does look off in the picture. ROFL

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

Found a high back carry photo from when DS was 3 months old! I could have definitely have gotten him up a little higher. Notice how it's tied above my boobs.

Kayla1981's picture
Joined: 01/04/07
Posts: 1529

See, I always think the high back carry looks more comfortable (for baby and mom). Is there an advantage to a low back carry?

I cannot wait to try back carries this time around. I didn't explore that at all with my DD but I really see how it could come in handy.

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

There is a big difference in how it wears to me. I prefer to have more weight transferred to my waist and hips since when I back carry I tend to do it for longer amounts of time. I do have some back issues which get worse as more weight is on my shoulders. What works best for one person doesn't necessarily work best for someone else. Smile

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

BUMP. (Don't want this thread to get deleted!!!!)

Kayla1981's picture
Joined: 01/04/07
Posts: 1529

I know I will be much more active on the board once I'm wearing again. Glad it's getting more traffic!

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

Me too! Biggrin

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

ME TOO!! Seriously...I can't tell you how much I am enjoying BWing again, thanks to this board. I had fallen into a stroller rut once she got to be a toddler...so glad to be out of it! ETA: I also like this board because I finally see the possibility in sight again of getting my crowns, haha.

I have a question about the Mei Tai, though...in all honesty, at this bigger toddler stage especially, what would be the reason that would cause you to grab a Mei Tai over an SSC? In my limited experience with Mei Tais, it seems that they are really just a less comfortable, less convenient version of the same basic type of carrier (although more adjustable, so I can see the benefit for smaller babies) But if there are other differences that make a Mei Tai preferable in certain situations, I'd love to hear them! I still have two that I made and almost never use...although as I mentioned somewhere else on here, I definitely did not make the straps comfy enough. Live and learn...

Marite13's picture
Joined: 08/07/09
Posts: 3368

Leigh, I have to say, the mei tai wins for me right now because of pregnancy! I can't wear the Ergo above my belly (well, I can't imagine that I can!), so being able to use the mei tai makes it a total winner for me! That said... we otherwise only use the Ergo too... and I think it is largely because of the ease of portability of the Ergo (vs the long straps of the mei tai) that make it more preferable. The only other thing I can think of... I think the Baby Hawk especially has a very high body... so it would be good for a back carry + sleeping. I tried to get Beni as deeply into the mei tai as I could today because I wanted her to sleep back there... and she ended up with a floppy head. Personally, I find the hood on the Ergo to be really small and restrictive to pull over a sleeping toddler's head to try to keep it from lolling right back. But, your mei tai has to have a tall body for this to make a difference.

ange84's picture
Joined: 12/28/09
Posts: 6564

For me I don't have a SSC, so the mei tei is my only back carry option. I also need a new mei tei because the straps on mine are too short and I have to do the dodgiest back carries, but thats about all I do lately (you would be proud Jackie, I can even throw him up there with some skill, though not as much as you)

cactuswren's picture
Joined: 10/19/09
Posts: 4658

Ah yes, I can see how it would be really helpful if you need some flexibility in where the straps hit (like with pregnancy). The lolling head issue I can see too, but neither of the mei tais I made are any better for that than the Ergo--probably worse.

Thanks for the perspectives! I think for us we'll probably be sticking with the Ergo, but now at least I know what to tell people when I'm recommending babywearing Smile

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

Wendy, are you able to tie under his butt when in a back carry? That's perfectly fine, especially at this age! Smile

ange84's picture
Joined: 12/28/09
Posts: 6564

I am working on it, just have trouble trying to do it in the mirror or without finding where everything goes backwards. I've got something working for me he hasn't fallen out yet and is pretty comfy up there. He may have to go up in it on Saturday as we are travelling for a family party but have a few other things on, one is my Nanna going up in a plane, you really think he will stand safely at an airfield.

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