If you’re ready to start logging some mileage with your baby in tow, you’ll need a jogging stroller. Meet the beloved BOB brand, which launched over 20 years ago, and is one of the best jogging strollers of all time (though Thule is giving it a run for its money). My husband and I used the Revolution Flex for years (he for running, I for day-to-day use and hikes), and we really enjoyed it. Here is our BOB Revolution Flex review!
*Note that the BOB Revolution Pro has been discontinued
Smoother than a baby’s butt.
In the $$$ category, the BOB Revolution Flex 3.0 stroller is the newest version of the brand’s most popular jogger. Delivering as smooth of a ride as its predecessors, we joke that if you just blow on the handlebars from behind, the BOB will start rolling on its own.
*Note that while the Revolution Flex can be used for jogging, it’s really not their hardcore jogging stroller (see BOB Blaze, below). Sadly, they discontinued their fixed-wheel jogger, the Ironman, a couple of years ago.
About the Brand
BOB recently revamped its whole line, keeping the Rambler (their smaller, somewhat stripped down version of their jogging strollers), doing away with the Revolution Pro (which had the handbrake for extra control), and adding the brand new Alterrain and Alterrain Pro strollers.
Here’s the brand’s running list (no pun intended) of jogging strollers:
- Rambler ~ $399
- Revolution Flex ~ $499
- Alterrain ~ $549
- Alterrain Pro ~ $599
- Revolution Flex Duallie ~ $649
The BOB Alterrain and Alterrain Pro (pictured above) are completely new strollers for BOB. While the Flex retained its original look, the Alterrain line comes with higher-end athleisure fabrics and a new sleek design that’s uncomfortably similar to the brand’s nearest competitor, the Thule Urban Glide 2.
Though the Flex and Alterrain strollers have an equally smooth ride, the Alterrain Pro inherited the handbrake that was previously found on the Revolution Pro, which is a major plus for serious runners who want more speed control – or for those who have hills to contend with.
The brand also streamlined the fold on the Alterrain by departing from the Flex’s two-step fold, making it a one-hand, one-step fold — big upgrade there!! Once folded, the stroller can roll like luggage, which is a plus considering that it weights 31.4 lbs (over 4 lbs heavier than the Revolution Flex – yikes!). The Alterrain Pro’s covered storage is reminiscent of Thule’s feature as well, and the canopy is also improved and not as frumpy as the Flex’s.
Overall, the Alterrain and Alterrain Pro are solid options for occasional and avid runners alike, and the one-step fold is a huge improvement. But the extra weight is a significant downside, and we’re not sure it is worth the price hike from the Revolution Flex. Other reviewers agree that, compared to the Thule Urban Glide, the BOB Alterrain comes up short, especially considering the price tag.
BTW, the “Stroller Strides Fitness” jogging stroller includes the stroller strides fitness kit (parent console, exercise manual, and exercise tubing) and a coupon for classes. Find classes near you at FIT4MOM.com.
Read also: Getting back into Shape After Baby
Size & Weight
Remember that jogging/all terrain strollers are the heaviest class of strollers out there. At 27.3 lbs, the Revolution is somewhat heavy and cumbersome. The Thule Urban Glide 2, for comparison, weighs 24.4 lbs (nearly a three-pound difference!).
Though the stroller itself isn’t terribly long (like the mountain buggy Terrain), the wheelbase is wider than most — many people attribute the excellent “push” of the BOB to the wide wheel base and well-balanced center of gravity.
Like all joggers, the BOB is large (even when folded — more on that later), so we recommend giving it a try before purchasing or finding a retailer with a generous return policy in case it ends up not working with the space/trunk you have.
The seat has a padded, 5-pt harness and now sits completely upright (yay! This used to be a complaint with the Flex’s previous versions), and it can hold up to 75 lbs of child meat.
You can adjust the height of the straps with an easy, “no re-thread” harness, which is quite nice. We noted that the buckle is pretty easy for motivated little ones to pop off, so watch out for those jail-breakers who can get out on their own (definitely not cool while jogging!).
The one-hand recline adjustment lets you quickly lay the seat back with the simple squeeze of a button. The leg rest is stationary (just like the older versions), and it’s padded for comfort and rubberized for durability.
We love that the seat comes complete with mesh pockets on the side for toys, sippy cups, snacks etc., and you can purchase a snack tray if you’d like.
A downside is that you can’t remove the seat fabric for washing; it must be spot cleaned by hand.
Car Seat Compatibility
You can use the BOB Revolution Flex with a car seat, but you’ll have to purchase an Infant Car Seat Adapter for most car seats separately. It’s compatible with car seats from Britax (their parent company), Chicco and Peg Perego.
Note that this stroller actually requires a two-step car seat strap installation. Once you click the car seat in place, you will need to connect the straps to ensure the infant seat is secure.
Reminder: yes, you can use the car seat from birth, but again, please don’t jog with it until your baby is at least 8 months old.
Canopy, Brakes, and Handlebar
The huge, multi-position canopy is adjustable, and the big vinyl peekaboo window allows you to keep an eye on things from above. The sunshade of the Flex 3.0 also features a mesh ventilation panel, which is a nice plus from its precursors. Plus, the peek-a-boo window now closes with magnets instead of Velcro. YES!
Downside: the canopy can get very bunchy and may rub on the heads of taller children (I dealt with this issue, and my firstborn was quite annoyed). To prevent this, you can use the pull-cords to pull the folded canopy junk out of the head space.
BOB has a heavy-duty, easy-to-use, foot-friendly rocker-style brake, which is at the center of the rear axle. Again, only the new Alterrain Pro model has a handbrake for speed control.
The BOB Revolution Flex does have an adjustable handlebar (hence the “Flex” part of the name), makes it great for parents of different heights. It also has a padded foam cover for your comfort.
(BTW, we prefer the handlebar on the Thule Urban Glide — it’s just way more sleek and ergonomic.)
Note that the runaway wrist strap is fixed on the right side of the handlebar, so if you happen to be a lefty, you may find that having it tied to your non-dominant hand is a bit annoying.
The storage basket is decent and there are two interior pockets in the back for better organization, as well as a large mesh pocket in the back of the seat for smaller items. Both of these features are upgrades from the 2.0 version.
This is the category where the BOB Revolution really shines…
Note that the tires on the BOB don’t have metal spokes and rims like on some of the cheaper strollers. The “spokes” are rubberized and therefore won’t rust or break. It’s features like these that set BOB (and others like Baby Jogger and Thule) apart from the rest.
The swivel wheel can be switched to fixed mode for running. You have to kneel to do it manually, but it’s super easy to do. We prefer a switch up by the handlebars, but whatevs. Not a dealbreaker.
The front wheel on BOB strollers is special: it has tracking knobs, which allow you to correct for any right or left drag that occurs while jogging with the wheel locked. This corrects any pulling, which is super annoying while running. Since pulling to one side is a common complaint with jogging strollers, especially for distance road running, BOB wins a big one in this department.
Last year, the Washington Post reported hundreds of crashes due to the sudden failure of the quick-release front wheel on the popular three-wheeled jogging strollers. This, of course, won’t affect you if you buy a new stroller, but beware if you go the second-hand route. Here’s what you should know about it.
For those who own BOB strollers (or are planning to purchase a used one) manufactured before 9/30/15, please refer to BOB’s education video about how to properly and safely use the front wheel and quick release.
The suspension system of the BOB Flex 3.0 is one of the best and will let you push the stroller over uneven, rough terrains with ease (and maybe even just one hand). It’s really one of the easiest strollers to maneuver. If you need more control on rough terrain and some help to keep the stroller tracking straight, you can lock the swivel wheel.
It also has shocks on each side, which can be tweaked depending on the weight of your child.
Again, these two controls (the tracking knobs on the front wheel and the shocks) set BOB apart from the rest of the jogging strollers in the world, even from the Baby Jogger Summit X3. Conversely, if you aren’t using this for jogging, these features won’t mean as much to you; you can save some money by buying a less technical stroller, like the Joovy or BabyTrend. See also: Favorite Jogging Strollers.
Folding & Carrying
The fold is a two-step, two-handed fold, which is not our favorite, but not uncommon for a jogging stroller. You’ll have to activate the fold by pushing the two release levers on the handlebar. Once you do so, the stroller will fold half way. After that, grab the rear pull loop that’s in the back of the seat to complete the fold. The stroller has a strap that allows you to lock the stroller in the folded position, but you have to do it manually.
Once folded, the Revolution Flex remains bulky (in fact, it’s bulkier than the previous versions), and it does NOT self-stand. Please be aware of that if you have limited space or if you have a small trunk — it may not fit.
If things get tight, you can easily pop off the wheels for a better fit, though it doesn’t make that big of a difference, and once again, the extra step isn’t ideal.
Out of space in your trunk? The Scout stroller rack fits nicely in your tow hitch and allows you to transport your BOB without filling up valuable trunk space.
BOB is great at many things — it has an awesome “push” (it seriously glides like butter), it steers easily with one hand, and the suspension and tracking on the stroller are state-of-the-art. That said, there are some annoyances: the bunchy canopy, the fold and lock situation, and the switch from fixed to swivel mode. In exchange, however, you get the most amazing push in the world, and most joggers wouldn’t trade that for anything.