The 10 Best Baby Gyms

Updated June 03, 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

10 Best Baby Gyms
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 39 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. Your precious child won't know that they're not just having fun with one of these baby gyms. They are loaded with stimulating activities that also help to develop fine motor skills, coordination, balance, sound recognition and more. Oh, and they also allow you to get a few minutes of much-needed relaxation in, too. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best baby gym on Amazon.

10. Lil' Jumbl Baby

Every part of the Lil' Jumbl Baby is covered with soft, plush material that feels smooth on your little one's skin. The nonslip grips on the bottom make it safe for use on wood or tile floors, but the dull colors may not be engaging enough for some.
  • includes a handy travel bag
  • toys hang at just the right height
  • not machine washable
Brand Lil' Jumbl
Model LJ-PM-01-W
Weight 2.4 pounds
Rating 4.5 / 5.0

9. Bright Starts Charming Chirps

The Bright Starts Charming Chirps is a good choice for parents on a budget. It comes in three different styles to suit your taste and folds up in a snap for easy portability, but it doesn't have many activities to play with or interactive lights.
  • includes a cute rattle
  • lightweight and easy to carry
  • owl toy hangs a little too low
Brand Bright Starts
Model 52170
Weight 2.2 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

8. Infantino Twist and Fold

If you're worried about over-stimulation with lights and sounds, look to the Infantino Twist and Fold. It has engaging colors and patterns and offers versatility for newborn play, tummy time or as a comfy and clean surface to sit on while out and about.
  • opens and collapses with one hand
  • folds up securely with a strap
  • mat size is a bit small
Brand Infantino
Model 206-353
Weight 5 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

7. Skip Hop Alphabet Zoo

Start your baby's learning of the ABC's early with the Skip Hop Alphabet Zoo. It features a charming display of bold letters and animal graphics on the extra-plush quilt, which is also super comfortable to play and roll on.
  • mat has different tactile fabrics
  • holds up well in the wash
  • toys can be hung high or low
Brand Skip Hop
Model 307300
Weight 3.1 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

6. Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends

Every parent wants their kiddo to be a genius, and the Baby Einstein Caterpillar and Friends is an investment in the right direction. It includes flash cards with real-world imagery and a motion-activated plush toy star that flashes to the beat of eight classical tunes.
  • eight toy attachment links
  • soft teether attached to the mat
  • folds up without removing the bars
Brand Baby Einstein
Model 90575
Weight 2.9 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

5. Fisher-Price Newborn-To-Toddler

The Fisher-Price Newborn-To-Toddler is a great value with so many fun features to keep your children busy through different developmental milestones. Whether they are lying on their backs, sitting or standing, there's an intriguing activity to help them learn and grow.
  • animals have adorable friendly faces
  • fosters fine motor skills
  • simple to wipe clean
Brand Fisher-Price
Model CCB70
Weight 6.2 pounds
Rating 4.4 / 5.0

4. Tiny Love Gymini Super Deluxe

With five hanging jungle friends, a large baby-safe mirror and captivating classical music, the Tiny Love Gymini Super Deluxe has everything to keep baby busy while you cook dinner or wash a load of laundry. The mat can also be thrown in the wash for hassle-free clean-up.
  • arches are well padded for safety
  • folds up compactly for travel
  • high-quality craftsmanship
Brand Tiny Love
Model 33310012
Weight 2.9 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

3. Skip Hop Treetop Friends

The Skip Hop Treetop Friends boasts a beautiful gender-neutral forest theme with loads of activities to develop a baby's body and mind. Its extra-large mat offers plenty of room for them to explore, plus it comes with a tummy time pillow to strengthen neck muscles.
  • helps teach cause and effect
  • quick and easy to assemble
  • encourages batting and grasping
Brand Skip Hop
Model 307500
Weight 5 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

2. Infantino Grow-With-Me

The Infantino Grow-With-Me is a 2-in-1 playground to keep your baby stimulated for hours. Not only is it a fully featured baby activity gym, but it also transforms into a fun ball pit, with 40 multicolored balls that can be stored in the turtle's head when not in use.
  • bright colors and patterns
  • also great for toddlers
  • turtle feet make a fun crinkle sound
Brand Infantino
Model 206-747
Weight 3.9 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

1. Fisher-Price Rainforest Deluxe

The Fisher-Price Rainforest Deluxe is a real crowd-pleaser for babies and parents alike, featuring over 10 activities with attention grabbing lights and sounds. The toucan toy can easily be removed for interactive on-the-go entertainment.
  • two modes of play
  • beautiful satin border
  • mirror for tummy time fun
Brand Fisher-Price
Model DFP08
Weight 4 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

Your Baby Needs to Play

You might think your baby is an immobile blob in those first few months of his life, but he's actually taking in his environment and learning everything that he can. The right activity gym can help your baby interact with his environment.

A baby's activity gym activates all five of his senses. When your baby is grabbing for the toys hanging above his head, he's developing his motor skills. When he's hanging out on the tummy time pillow, he's improving his head and neck strength and preparing his body for crawling.

When he touches the different textures and looks at the vibrant colors, he learns about the environment around him. If his activity gym plays music or has crinkling material, he is exploring the sounds in his surroundings.

In addition to the physical benefits and the improvement of the senses, activity gyms are developed so that they stimulate brain activity and imaginative play. The varying colors, textures, and shapes allow them to explore and learn about their surroundings.

Play and interaction are crucial to your little one's development. It's important to choose a toy like the activity gym that is going to encourage him to interact with his environment.

Activity gyms have the added benefit of keeping babies entertained for several minutes at a time. If you're a new parent, you will not only want a baby activity gym for the intellectual and physical benefits, but you'll be ecstatic to have a few moments to put your baby down so you can eat a meal (hopefully while it's hot) or head to the bathroom.

Your Baby Needs to Move Around

Scientifically speaking, it is crucial to your baby's physical development that he be moved into different positions throughout the day. Babies who are left to lay on their backs for extended periods of time can develop flat head syndrome which is difficult to correct (and good luck finding a hat that fits).

Health care professionals often recommend that babies be moved from back to tummy to side positions during their waking hours. This helps to avoid physical complications and improve physical development.

That's why baby activity gyms are such great inventions. Even if your baby is laying on his back during play, the toys hanging above his head are going to encourage him to move his head side to side as he shifts his focus. This can happen just by hanging the toys to the side instead of directly above his head.

Activity gyms that come with a tummy time pillow can give babies who despise tummy time a little extra encouragement and comfort. Who wants to lay flat on the floor for several minutes a day with nothing soft underneath? I know I don't.

If your baby needs some time on his side, the activity gyms that come with the attachable mirrors that are great for getting baby to focus on something other than the wall.

Baby activity gyms are especially beneficial in the first three months when your little one is hitting those milestones one right after the other. Many are designed to grow with your baby, so you'll get a lot of use in that first year.

Oh, How Times Have Changed

The exact history of the baby activity gym is unclear, but what is clear is our ever-increasing knowledge of the benefits of toys for babies and children.

Since the earliest documented history, children have been playing with toys. Sometimes those toys were just sticks and rocks. Sometimes they were fortunate enough to have hand-crafted toys made specifically for play.

Around the 18th century, children were beginning to be recognized as separate human beings. This means that more focus was placed on their happiness in childhood rather than how their presence benefited their families. This was known as the Enlightenment Era for toy development. This is the era when rocking horses, puzzles, toy wagons, and other popular toys were developed.

The 20th century saw a rise in the middle class resulting in more families being able to afford toys for their children. Some popular toys (like Silly Putty) were even created by accident during the second World War. Toys that enhance creativity in babies and children grew in popularity and became staples in American homes with children.

Today's parents fully recognize the benefits of toys from an early age, sparking the creation of toys such as the baby activity gym. The colors, textures, and sometimes sounds found with an activity gym are beneficial for a baby's physical and cognitive development.

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Last updated on June 03, 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.

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