Which is best for your baby?
Baby swings, baby rockers, and baby bouncers share one common purpose, they can be a lifesaver for first-time parents of colicky babies and toddlers. A great way of giving them a few minutes of sanity and quiet.
These are fun hand-free tools that are typically used to soothe and calm crying babies by entertaining them. This gives you some hands-free moments to do some chores or simply relax.
You may be wondering what the differences are between these three products and what one is most suitable? Below, we have provided you with a breakdown of each of these baby chairs informing you of their best fit, whilst giving you advice for choosing the best one.
Baby swing vs Baby rocker vs Baby Bouncer - Comparison Table
Baby swing vs Baby rocker vs Baby Bouncer - Reviews
A swing is typically used in the first few months of an infant's life.
A baby swing is just like an adult swing. It is a padded chair suspended on a sturdy frame. It can swing in a side to side or back and forth motion which resembles the wombs rocking motion. This can be used from birth until your baby is around 6-9 months old.
There are swings for older babies who can already sit upright too and these are suitable for indoor and outdoor use.
As well as adhering to the age group and weight limits that are recommended, most manufacturers and pediatricians advise parents to stop using the swings when your baby can sit unassisted or is likely to climb out, as this may result in them plunging to the ground.
Tips for choosing the best baby swing
Understand the type of baby swing as they can range from basic models to more complex models that combine the function of two different chairs. This breaks up the manatomy and makes it more exciting.
Baby swings require a power source for their rocking motion and this can be done via batteries or electricity. Batteries are the best and most convenient option if you are going to be moving a lot with the swing. The only downside is that they are a little expensive to replace.
All baby swings are expected to have a minimum of a 3 point harness system. Most recent models will now feature a 5 point harness system which includes an over the shoulder restraint as well as the waist and belt harness system.
Baby swings typically tend to rock from head to toe. Many newer versions will now include a variety of other motions too. This includes circular movements or up and down hop motions. These are the best ones for soothing babies.
A baby rocker should be quite easy to understand if you've ever used an adult rocking chair. This is a seat designed for babies that has two slightly curved bands at the bottom. This enables you to push the chair in an arc motion, using your hands or nudging it with your toe/foot to initiate a rocking movement.
So, when should a baby rocker be used?
A baby rocker is similar to a swing in the sense that it can be used from birth, but most of them are only really usable up to the age of 6 months.
In comparison to a baby swing, baby rockers tend to be more compact as they are designed with a smaller frame. This is because a rocker isn't suspended in mid-air like a swing chair.
Tips for choosing the best baby rocker
The sturdiness of the frame largely determines the functionality and reliability of the baby rocker. The best baby rockers will be made of strong metals. A lot of standard baby rockers are made using cheap plastics. Those made from strong metals are going to be more expensive, however, they can save you money in the long run as they can be passed down to younger children.
A rocker with a wide base is going to reduce the risk of it tipping over.
Non slip pads are going to prevent the rocker from sliding dangerously, particularly when being used on tile and wooden floors.
A nicely padded seat is going to be more comfortable for your baby. However, an overly padded rocker may lead to issues like sinking into the seat uncomfortably which can result in issues with heat build-up and retention. The seat should be soft against your baby's skin.
Most rockers don't offer options other than the standard rocking motion. However, if you are happy to invest a little more you can get an advanced rocker with lights, vibrating seats, and musical sounds that are going to keep your baby occupied.
A baby bouncer is very similar to a rocker and a swing as it is intended for infants that are unable to sit unassisted. They will typically be suitable for your baby up until the age of 9 months, although some baby bouncers can be used as toddler chairs after this.
The most basic bouncers will be designed as a simple seat on a wireframe which allows it to spring up and down. Your child can relax or sleep while you rock the bouncer with your hands.
These are great for playtime and are especially handy because your baby can use their arms and legs to stimulate the spring movements which will provide them with lots of fun, while teaching them cause and effect too.
Tips for choosing the best baby bouncer
You will need to check the weight capacity as a bouncer involves an infant using their arm and leg muscles to spring up and down. Although this can be funny to watch, it's important to check the restrictions, to ensure that it isn't going to topple over from intense movements.
Infants typically love spending time in their bouncer, sometimes making it difficult to get them out. It is important to pay attention to the materials that the bouncer is made from to ensure that it isn't going to cause any skin irritations. Ideally, you will want a bouncer made using high quality materials.
Bouncers are prone to getting messy so you want to choose one that is easy to clean. Most will come with seats that can be removed for machine washing. However, you will need to double check this as they aren't all machine washable.
If you are likely to be moving around a lot you will want a bouncer that can be easily transported and stored. A travel bouncer is a great lightweight option that can fold into a compact size making it easy to carry around. A bouncer that can be folded flat is also convenient if you have limited space available in your apartment.