Baby play gyms are important for your infant’s development. What should you look for when choosing a gym?
Although there are many quality baby gyms on the market, it is always reasonable to make sure that the gym you are going to buy has these important features:
- As newborns can only see highly contrasting colors, the more black and white toys hang from the gym’s arches the better. If your gym does not feature black and white or light and dark contrasting toys, buy some and use them instead of color toys until your baby reaches the age of 5-6 months. Try this caterpillar, panda or jingle ball.
- There should be some additional loops on the gym’s arches so that you will be able to hang new rattles, links and teething toys.
- You can’t possibly prevent your baby from pooping, peeing or spitting up on the gym. So, the mat should be detachable and easy to clean. It should also be strong enough to sustain numerous washings.
The Black, White & Red Activity 3D Playmat & Gym is arguably one of the best products for infants on the market. Not only does it feature contrasting colors, it can also be washed in cold water and comes with as many as five toys including a mirror! There is also a music box inside the panda; what’s more, you can easily detach the toys to use them in your car or hang them on the stroller handle.
The playmat is made of high quality materials: it is extremely durable and will not fade even after ten or more washes. You can also take the mat with you when going on a trip: just fold it and put inside a special plastic carrier. However, some parents might find this playmat a bit pricey: there are many baby play gyms that are significantly cheaper than this one.
The Infantino Twist and Fold Activity Gym is a collapsible play mat that features a large peek-a-boo mirror, four linkable toys and a plush prop. You can choose whether to hang the toys high or low; every toy is cute and has a surprise for your kid (for example, the elephant’s ears are crinkly, the giraffe holds a miniature rattle, and the monkey has a plastic ring to grab).
The Bright Starts 5-in-1 Play Activity Gym is a large 48″ playmat that can be converted into a ball pit. The mat also features an electronic toucan that plays as many as eight merry melodies, a plush elephant, leaf-shaped teethers, rattles, crinkle fabrics, a large plastic mirror and a prop pillow. There are also 35 colorful balls to play with: this playmat is a toy that is ideal both for an infant and a toddler.
Never forget about safety: baby play gyms are wonderful toys; however, you should always supervise your child while she is lying on the mat. To avoid falls the gym should only be used on the floor and not on raised surfaces. If you have a hardwood floor, you might need to keep a folded quilt or a carpet under the play gym.