When you have a toddler, you become very familiar with Whether your kid is reaching, rolling, and cruising, or pulling themselves up and jumping to different levels, climbing is a natural behavior that has been proven to promote, among other things, strength, confidence, neuromuscular development, motor skills, and creativity. So you can’t really get mad at them when you find them chasing the cat to the top of the bookshelf or using the sofa to practice for the all-around competition at the 2032 Olympics.
The American Academy of Pediatrics has some common-sense advice when letting little kids climb:
- Help them make a soft landing by providing mats made of safety-tested rubber or rubber-like materials.
- And while this applies to outdoor climbing, it’s equally on point indoors. If you kid is tearing up stairs, steps and ladder rungs, they should be evenly spaced.
- Make sure the equipment they use is age-appropriate, and that it’s never overloaded.
- And supervise them!
What you can and should do is provide an appropriate venue. These toddler climbing toys and tumbling mats offer indoor and outdoor options to nurture your kid’s motor development and sense of exploration — and they’re a reason for you to finally take that plastic wrap off the furniture.
Best Toddler Climbing Toys
This is a gorgeous four stage folding mat that is angled as a tunnel or stacked like a sofa.
It’s a tumbling mat! It’s a playhouse! It’s a tent! It’s a rocketship cockpit! It’s as if you gave your kid a thing and they only wanted to play with the box the thing came in, only the box is the thing. Woah.
These indoor monkey bars can support 150 pounds of kids.
These monkey bars for climbing are sturdy, easy to put together, and great for kids three and up. Just make sure they have soft underneath in case someone gets slippery fingers. This thing has interlocking plastic tubes and connectors with double self locking springs for extra durability.
This deceptively simple tumbling set kept one Fatherly editor's child occupied for an entire day. Make that, days, weeks, months.
Each piece in this set wipes clean, and you get a ramp, two building blocks, a cylinder, and a large half cylinder. It’s an indoor playground Fantasia.
This brilliant indoor climbing gym lets kids create their own super-secret hideaway fort.
Aimed at kids 18 months and older, this wonderful set also features a slide with siderail grips, an easy angle slope, and an extra wide base.
This is one of those beautifully basic toys that has endless options. Kids can use it as a boat, a rocker, a bed, a slide, or a tunnel.
This toy, used in Waldorf schools, promotes balance and imaginary play. It supports 100 pounds worth of kids, as they rock and tumble on it.
This brand owns the market in sturdy toddler gear that takes a beating and then some. You can use this slide indoors or outside. It folds up or down without tools and is suitable for kids 18 months and up.
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