Every parent wants their baby to be sufficiently stimulated and exercised both mentally and physically. That’s where comparing baby exercisers like the baby walker vs jumper vs exersaucer come into play. There are many different options available and so picking the right type of baby exerciser can be incredibly difficult. That’s where I come into play.
If you want to hear my opinion straight away, it’s this: as long as you supervise your baby while they’re in the device, they’re all incredible options designed to better the life of baby and parent alike. Picking the right product comes down to pure personal preference. In my opinion, the baby walker is by far the best – specifically the activity-based models. Read more on this down below.
I’ll be sharing the key differences between them, their pros and cons
- The Differences Between Baby Walker vs Jumper vs Exersaucer
- Why Buy a Baby Exerciser
- My Top Picks
- Baby Trend 2.0 Activity Walker
- Kolcraft Tiny Steps 2-in-1 Infant and Baby Activity Walker
The Differences Between Baby Walker vs Jumper vs Exersaucer
To decide whether a baby walker vs jumper vs exersaucer will be best for your baby you need to know what each of these terms means. I’ve broken down each of them to give you an idea of what these products are and when to use them.
The key differences betweem them is as follows. A baby walker has wheels and while the baby is suspended in it, she can move around horizontally using her legs. On the other hand a baby jumper lets the baby move up and down so vertically while she’s suspended in the air, sometimes touching the floor with her feet but not always. As for exercausers, unlike with traditional baby walkers, babies don’t walk themselves around in exersaucers but they’re pushed around by someone else.
Baby walkers, also referred to as mobile play centers, are devices that enable babies who don’t yet know how to walk to maneuver around their environments with ease. A baby walker is wheeled and consists of a suspended fabric seat and a feeding or activity tray. They can be used the moment your baby is able to hold up his or her own head and when his or her feet can comfortably touch the floor once seated.
A baby jumper is a device in which your baby is placed in order for them to jump up and down. Baby jumpers come in three designs: doorway jumpers, activity jumpers and standalone jumpers. It’s generally recommended for your baby to start using a jumper at the age of four months or whenever the baby is able to hold their own head up without assistance.
By the way, I covered some of the best baby jumpers in another article.
Baby exersaucers were originally developed by Evenflo – a brand I’ve discussed on the site when comparing Evenflo vs Graco – as a replacement of the baby walker. The baby stands in the contraption and explores the attached educational accessories. The exersaucer is moved manually by its base. They’re designed for usage on babies aged between four and six months of age.
Why Buy a Baby Exerciser
Baby exercisers come with many pros and cons. Using one is a highly personal decision that lies with mom and dad to make alone. Before addressing the controversy and discussing the cons of using a baby exerciser, let’s take a look at the pros of such exercisers and why they remain ever-popular.
- Allows baby to explore their surroundings and experience them from a new perspective
- Gives caregivers a much-needed break for a few minutes
- A fun way for baby to expel some pent-up energy
- When used appropriately, baby exercisers are a fantastic source of physical and mental exercise for developing babies
What You Need to Be Mindful of When Buying a Baby Exerciser, Walker or Jumper
There have been some heated debates around.
In just two decades, baby walkers had accounted for over 230,000 injuries in the US alone. These injuries are often the result of babies being unsupervised whilst in them, but one cannot downplay that number. The risks associated with baby walkers include the risk of injury due to instances like falling down the stairs or into swimming pools, reaching dangerous objects like kettles or irons, delayed walking milestones and negative impacts on motor and perceptual abilities are also presented.
When overused, baby jumpers can result in muscle imbalance and could even lead to impaired mental and physical development. On top of these risks, the risk of babies falling out of jumpers and sustaining injuries due to this is also present.
Even though they were designed to scrap the risks associated with walkers, exersaucers aren’t without their risks either. The product is criticized because it purportedly promotes poor posture, imbalance and limited interaction and exploration with and of the baby’s environment.
My Top Picks
- Best Baby Walker – Baby Trend 2.0 Activity Walker
- Best Two-in-One – Kolcraft Tiny Steps 2-in-1 Infant and Baby Activity Walker
- Best Baby Jumpers and Exersauser – The five best options can be found right here
I’ve awarded the Baby Trend 2.0 Activity Walker the title of best baby walker for many reasons. Firstly it’s massively affordable to the vast majority of parents which is a factor that can’t be ignored – especially since your baby will outgrow it in just a few months. Secondly, it doubles as a feeding tray and an activity platform. Thirdly, it has a foldable design which makes transporting and storing this walker a breeze. And finally, it comes in an assortment of unisex designs and color options to stimulate and entertain your little one.
Who This Is Ideal For
The Baby Trend 2.0 Activity Walker is the perfect companion for babies who are just learning how to walk. Not to mention a blessing to overwhelmed parents who need a couple of minutes to themselves!
Why You Should Consider it
It features a shallow seat and high padded back to ensure your little one is always comfortable and supported. It also has three levels of height adjustability. A removable toy bar is also featured in the Baby Trend 2.0‘s design for your baby’s enjoyment. Multi-directional wheels allow your baby to explore their home with ease.
- Dimensions: 23.4″ x 20.9″ x 26.8″
- Weight: 6.61lbs
- Color options: Blue Sprinkles, Yellow Sprinkles and Emily (for girls)
- Minimum weight: 15lbs
- Maximum weight: 25lbs
- Warranty: 6-months
- Easy to set-up, use, carry and store
- Attractive design options
- Doesn’t work well on carpeted floors
- Cleaning can be a hassle
The next product I’ll be sharing with you is the Kolcraft Tiny Steps Activity Walker. This is a wonderful product that has been designed with your baby’s safety and wellbeing in mind. Skid-resistant friction pads ensure that your baby won’t be slipping and sliding all over the place while a height-adjustable seat ensures they are well-supported at all times. This Baby Activity Walker from Kolcraft also features a foldable design for ease of carrying and storage.
Who This Is Ideal For
This product is ideal for parents who are looking to use one product during two stages of their baby’s life – infant and baby. This is because it converts from a seated walker to an activity walker. Because of this, its low price makes this a savvy investment.
Why You Should Consider it
You should purchase the Kolcraft Tiny Step 2-in-1 Baby Activity Walker for a multitude of reasons. The most attractive of which being that it grows along with your growing baby. But above and beyond its convertible nature, this product is safe, educational and interactive.
- Dimensions: 16″ x 24″ x 32.5″
- Weight: 7.5lbs
- Color options: Forest Friends and Jubilee (both unisex)
- Minimum weight: 15lbs
- Maximum weight: 26lbs
- Warranty: 1-year
- Very easy to set-up, use, carry, store and clean
- Impressive warranty period
- Wheels tend to swivel
- Overall longevity and quality of plastic is questionable
Are baby walkers safe?
For the most part, yes. As long as you don’t leave your baby in one for a prolonged period of time or whilst they are unsupervised then baby walkers can and should be considered perfectly safe.
From what age should a baby be placed in a baby walker?
Most baby walker manufacturers recommend that your baby be placed in a baby walker at the age of four months or when the baby is able to support their head on their own.
How long can I leave my baby in a baby walker?
The general recommendation is to leave your baby in a baby walker for periods of between 15 to 20 minutes at a time.
The subject of using a baby walker vs jumper vs exersaucer will always be up for debate. Some heated ones. In my opinion, as long as you properly supervise your child in a walker, everyone will benefit.
Of the products highlighted, I find the Kolcraft Tiny Steps 2-in-1 Baby and Infant Activity Walker to be the better option due to its versatility and the sheer level of convenience it provides parents with. By using an activity walker your baby will be entertained, stimulated and get their daily dose of exercise – all while mom or dad can have a few precious moments without a baby in their arms.
Last update on 2021-08-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API