Whether they’re in a stylish summer pool or taking a warm winter bath, babies relish water play. Just listening to the splashes or sprinkles and seeing the bubbles and waves gets them thrilled to bits. Swimming also provides a sensational learning experience for toddlers. When he is busy splashing water and giggling, he’s also learning basic physics concepts of sinking and floating.
That said, there are a few essentials you’ll need to purchase if you plan to take your baby for swimming. These include a changing mat, baby towels and floating swim suit. Another must-have item is a baby float. The best baby float will help your baby to gain confidence when he’s in water. This way, he won’t be scared of learning how to swim later on.
What’s the Best Baby Float?
Baby pool floats have evolved a great deal following the introduction of water wings. These floats now come in a wide range of styles and designs. And although some of them are solely designed for keeping babies afloat, there are others that incorporate entertaining features.
Below find the best baby floats:
1. Nicewell Baby Float Swimming Ring
The Baby Swimming Ring by Nicewell is fitted with a very cozy backrest and detachable soft cushion for securing your baby’s bottom. The cushion ensures that your baby does not slide out when they’re in water.
The Nicewell baby float is available in two sizes: small and medium. The small size can be used by babies between the ages of 5 and 18 months while the medium one is recommended for toddlers aged 12 to 26 months.
What we love most about this baby float is that it’s constructed from safe materials. More specifically, it’s made of PVC, which is a non-toxic and durable material.
2. Punada Baby Pool Float
Punada baby float is another eco-friendly and durable option worth considering. It’s also made from PVC, and can accommodate a maximum weight of 44 lbs. So if your toddler weighs more than this, you might want to consider another baby float.
One feature that sets this baby float from the pack is the addition of a canopy. The canopy, which attaches and detaches with ease, prevents your baby from being exposed to direct sunlight.
Another benefit of punada baby float is the incorporation of two handles, where your baby can hold onto. There’s also a cute steering wheel that rotates and a horn at the center, which produces a beep sound.
If you’re not satisfied with your purchase, the manufacturer allows you to return it and get a full refund or free replacement.
3. Waitiee Free Baby Inflatable Swimming Float
Waitee is the perfect baby float to purchase if you want your little one to learn how to swim. It’s designed in such a way that allows your toddler to kick his legs in water and extend his arms so he can propel himself forwards. Within a few weeks of using this float, your child will have learned a thing or two regarding swimming.
This baby float comes in three sizes: Small, Large and X-large so you can choose one based on your toddler’s age. You can purchase the small one for 4 month old and the bigger size for 2 year old and beyond.
This float is fitted with a comfortable and inflatable backrest. It also has a seatbelt to keep your baby secure. And thanks to the double-deck air chamber, inflating and deflating this float is a piece of cake. When inflating, start with the small air chamber before moving onto the big one.
4. Topist Baby Pool Float
The coolest feature about Topist baby float is the way it’s shaped like a boat, complete with a steering wheel and a horn that beeps. Plus, it’s made of eco-friendly PVC material, complemented with non-toxic ink printing.
The added canopy helps to protect your little one from harsh UV rays. However, it’s easily detachable in case you want your toddler to absorb some vitamin D from the sun. To ensure that your baby is safe, the float has two handles and a reinforced seat.
Inflating and deflating Topist baby float is a cinch. It even comes with a storage bag for easy portability. Measuring 29” by 25”, this baby float is suitable for kids between the age of 6 and 36 months. Overall, it can support toddlers weighing up to 44 lbs. And the good thing is that you can return it within three months of purchase if you or your toddler don’t like it. In case of any inquiries, Topist provides a 24-hour email customer service.
5. SwimWays Baby Spring Float
If you’re looking for a baby float with all the bells and whistles, SwimWays float is just what you need. This baby float is a triple threat- for one, it’s fitted with an inner spring which enhances its comfort and stability. Two, it comes with shade or canopy that provides UPF 50+ sun protection for your little one. Thirdly, its octopus design is like none other on the market. Once you set your toddler on it, he’ll want to stay in the pool all day long.
But what interests kids the most is how the octopus rotates, allowing them to play about with each tentacle that holds a toy. Some of the toys fitted on this baby float include a squeaker fish, fish teether, rings and a touch star.
If you’re hesitant to buy a baby float because you’re concerned about their safety, you’ll be pleased to know that this one has a ton of safety features. Thanks to the wide base, dual air chambers and safety valves, your baby will be totally safe in water. Plus, SwimWays Activity Center baby float can be folded flat for easy portability. Generally, thiswim float is recommended for kids aged between 9 and 24 months.
6. Kemuse Inflatable Toddler Pool Float
Kemuse offers an all-in-one baby swimming essentials package. In addition to the baby float inflatable, you will also get a waterproof storage bag and several bath toys. The pool float is made of high-quality and eco-friendly materials so it will last a long time. The printing on this baby float is also done using non-toxic ink so you don’t have to worry about posing environmental hazards.
Recommended for toddlers between 6 months and 4 years, Kemuse pool float can support weights of up to 60 lbs. Furthermore, it has a large floatation ring and handles to increase safety. Lastly, the float has a canopy that ensures that your baby’s delicate skin does not get exposed to the sun’s UV rays.
7. Meland Baby Float
When it comes to babies, one of the things you have to pay closer attention to is their delicate skin. An inappropriate diet or putting them down on rough surfaces can trigger skin irritation. Luckily, the Meland pool float is made of soft eco-friendly materials. This way, you can have your baby sit down on the float comfortably and even release his legs in water if he wishes. This baby float also comes with a back holder where your toddler can lean and simply enjoy the scenery.
To guarantee safety, this baby float is equipped with two air bags; one on each side. There are also inflatable rings that make the float more stable. Meland baby float has a maximum weight capacity of 66 lbs. More specifically, it’s recommended for toddlers up to the age of 4 years.
Designed as a baby float flamingo, this baby float is easy to use and carry around. It has separate inflate mouths and it’s pretty easy to inflate or deflate. Another thing you’ll like about this float is its durability. Meland baby float has been sewn tightly so you don’t have to worry about it coming apart.
What is a Swimming float
A swimming float is specially designed for babies and younger kids who have just started learning how to swim. Swimming floats are also useful in exercise meant for therapeutic and training purposes.
If you’re shopping for a baby swimming float, the most common design you’ll come across is an inflatable ring. With this float, the toddler has to swim in the middle of it. But for a float to function in this manner, it has to be inflated via a valve. This inflation process makes the float lighter than water since it’s mainly made up of air.
Often, individuals don’t realize that swimming with floats is harder than swimming without one. The reason for this is that floats are usually held at the front, forcing a swimmer to engage his leg muscles more.
Luckily, some floats come in very large sizes. These ones are good for providing buoyancy so that swimmers can stand on them without falling off. Another variation of a swimming float is the ‘pool noddle’. This one consists of one very long and thin cylinder with a hollow core. Most pool noodles are about 3 feet long. Another float you can consider is a pool buoy although its main function is to help in exercising arms.
Swimming As Part of Childhood Development
A devoted parent will not only be concerned with his kid’s health but also his holistic development. Such parents look for every opportunity where their toddler can gain additional knowledge other than learning how to read and write. These individuals understand that concepts such as art and music can also boost a child’s intelligence.
One of the best and easiest activities that can foster your toddler’s intellectual ability is swimming. In fact, swimming will help your child to develop both physically and mentally. Numerous research studies have proven that kids who learn swimming early, are able to achieve many development milestones long before their non-swimming colleagues do. This activity helps to improve skills such as walking, balancing and cognitive ability.
If you encourage your baby to learn how to swim when he’s still young, you’re guaranteed that he’ll become a well-versed, independent and healthy youngster. Another perk is that if your toddler starts learning how to swim, you’ll also get an opportunity to enjoy the water and unwind.
Besides, swimming alongside your baby strengthens the bond between the two of you. Since you will always be around to help them if they’re getting restless, they’ll always feel secure in your presence. Few activities can boost the bond between a mom and his toddler the way swimming does.
What to Look For When Buying a Baby Float
If you’re looking to purchase a baby pool float, there are a couple of features you should pay attention to. They are:
If you ask any paediatrician, they’ll tell you that direct sunlight isn’t good for toddlers below the age of 6 months. And even if they reach this age and you start using applying sunscreen on them, their skin is still very delicate. It is why you should always go for baby floats equipped with canopies. A canopy is specifically designed to keep the sun out. If the baby float doesn’t have a canopy, a baby hat can also help.
The one concern that nearly every parent raises is whether a neck ring are safe for babies. However, it’s important to consider the safety of every baby pool float; be it a neck float or not.
For one, it should be made of leak-proof materials to prevent any water from getting into your toddler’s float. Secondly, it should have safety valves. Baby floats that come with straps are also recommended as they help to secure kids tightly.
Unfortunately, accidents may happen even if you’re using the safest baby float on the market. This brings us to our last point- babies using floats should be supervised throughout. Your toddler’s arms and body are still developing, which is why the float should be within reach in case something goes wrong.
Baby floats are designed in a wide range of devices. Some are designed for infants while others can be used by older babies. The rule of thumb is to get a float that can grow with your baby. This way, you won’t have to purchase a brand new float every time he turns one year older.
Also, if you’re buying a float for an older baby, consider getting one with handles. It’s likely that your little one already has some experience holding things since handles will come in handy. On the same note, if you have more than one baby, consider getting a twin inflatable baby float. This way, you can save money by purchasing only one unit.
Apart from size, you should also examine the material used in making the baby float you’re planning to buy. Avoid baby pool floats made of cheap, flimsy materials that will start getting torn with a few uses. Moreover, the material should be easy to clean. The most durable toddler floats are those made of either PVC or vinyl.
One mistake that some parents make is prioritizing design over functionality. There’s nothing wrong with buying a whale-shaped baby float. However, you should first check whether it serves its main purpose. Once you’ve tested and confirmed that it works well, you can then narrow down your list of options by checking their designs.
The last thing you want is for your little one to start getting restless during his first time at the pool. If you’re looking to create memorable moments that will boost your toddler’s confidence in swimming, start by purchasing a comfy float. Ideally, the float’s seams ought to be tough and flat but still non-irritant. Another feature that will determine just how comfortable the float is, is the seat. It should be positioned properly to prevent your young one from getting fatigued.
Baby floats come with a myriad of other accessories. Add-ons such as canopies are really handy as they offer sun protection. If you’d like your toddler to get entertained, look for floats that have bath toys.
Choosing the Right Float for Your Child
The main function of a baby float is to provide maximum float for your baby. Baby floats are mainly used for toddlers who have not yet learned how to swim. For instance, if your child is showing an interest in water play but is too young to learn swimming, a baby float can help to familiarize him with the environment.
The best baby float is one that holds most of your child’s weight at the middle. A majority of toddler floats also allow kids to sit close to the water; hence, maintaining their center of gravity down. This in turn, prevents the likelihood of the pool float capsizing. Before purchasing any baby float, ensure you check the recommended weight capacity.
Another feature that you should look for in a baby float is a sunshade. Baby floats with canopies are beneficial not just during summer but also when it’s cloudy. This is because the sun’s rays can till penetrate through clouds and burn your toddler’s delicate skin. If your child remains exposed to direct sunlight for a prolonged period of time, he’s likely to get sunburns.
You might also want to go for baby floats that provide an interactive experience for your baby. If you have an older or adventurous kid, consider getting him a small-sized float that can allow him to access water and splash it around. However, if you’re getting a float for a younger baby, the best option is one that has a stable and comfortable seat for him to sit on.
As you shop for baby floats, you should also take your child’s interests into consideration. For instance, if he’s shown an interest in animals, consider getting them a baby flat mermaid or one shaped like a whale.
Pool Safety Tips
Did you know that you can drown in as little as two inches of water? It’s much riskier for toddlers who have no experience moving around, leave alone swimming. That said, you should never leave your baby on a float by himself. It doesn’t matter whether you’re taking him to a small shallow pool or a much bigger body of water such as a lake.
Even if they’re on the safest floats on the market, leaving toddlers all alone could be a recipe for disaster. Although most baby floats have a ton of safety features, they could flip at any time. What’s more, you should be extra careful when you getting your baby into or out of a floating device. Ensure that his legs and arms don’t get stuck on the float as this can be risky.
Also keep in mind that the float’s canopy will only work if it’s positioned at the right angle. So even if float has a canopy, be sure to invest in sunblock and baby hats.
The Bottom Line
A baby float is very different from the models used by older kids and grownups. The best baby pool float will have certain features to keep your toddler safe as they enjoy the water. For instance, this float will have a canopy, straps and be made of leak-proof materials.