10 Best Bounce Houses | March 2017

We spent 31 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. If you really want to win the "Parent of the Year" award, we've got the perfect way to do so. These bounce houses must surely be the ultimate addition to any kid's toy chest, and getting one for your youngsters will make you a shoe-in for the title. As a bonus, they are also actually pretty good at providing exercise. Skip to the best bounce house on Amazon.
10 Best Bounce Houses | March 2017


Overall Rank: 7
Best Mid-Range
★★★
Overall Rank: 4
Best High-End
★★★★
Overall Rank: 2
Best Inexpensive
★★★★★
10
The Cloud 9 Jungle Jumper is perfect for the adventurous youngster who loves to climb. It has a robust, 950-watt blower that creates a constant pillow of air as your little ones jump, but the overall quality doesn't seem as durable as other brands.
9
If you're looking for a fun time without the high price tag, the Blast Zone Magic Castle makes the perfect choice. You'll have peace of mind as your little one plays thanks to its extra-durable commercial vinyl floor, high walls, and hook-and-loop fastener entrance.
8
Get your kids exercising in the action-packed Bounceland Pop Star. Its supremely thick nylon construction can withstand years of use and can be easily wiped clean to stay looking new. Plus, the included air pump operates more quietly than those of other bounce houses.
7
Kids can bounce, climb, slide, and play basketball in the charming Bounceland Royal Palace. This top-seller is made with heavy-duty, puncture-proof materials and has multiple features, including a fun climbing wall and a 10-foot slide, that kiddos can enjoy for hours.
  • canopy cover for sunny days
  • stitched with strong seams
  • hoop is a bit flimsy
Brand Bounceland
Model 5964
Weight 70.6 pounds
6
Created and designed by mothers, the Island Hopper Sports & Hops offers everything a kid could want for recreational fun. It is aesthetically pleasing, with natural outdoor colors, and it features three target nets to practice pitching a fastball or throwing a football.
  • soft inflated ramp
  • 500 lb weight capacity
  • needs a large space to set up
Brand Island Hopper
Model pending
Weight 69.1 pounds
5
Let the games begin with the KidWise Arc Arena II. It is generously sized at 10 x 20 feet for plenty of room to play, and it has hoops and open-ended goals on each side to get an exciting bout of soccer or basketball underway.
  • includes six neoprene balls
  • for kids 3-10 years old
  • takes a while to fold up and store
Brand KIDWISE
Model KW-ARC-02
Weight 89 pounds
4
The Inflatable HQ sports an adorable crayon theme in gender neutral colors that will delight any child. All high-stress areas, including the bouncing surface, mattress sides, bottom, and slide, are made from industrial strength PVC to withstand rough play.
  • won't tear or fade over time
  • belt reinforcements
  • 30-inch bed has great lift
Brand Inflatable HQ
Model pending
Weight pending
3
The Island Hopper Fort is a worthwhile investment that will make lasting memories for years to come. It is ideal for those who love sports as it features a soccer goal, a challenging climbing wall, and a basketball hoop for slam dunk contests.
  • imprinted twist and tangle game
  • strong reinforced pvc floor
  • 3-foot elevated lookout
Brand Island Hopper
Model pending
Weight 85.8 pounds
2
The Little Tikes Jump 'n Slide provides instant backyard fun for up to three kids. Its mesh walls not only protect your children during play, but allow for high visibility and maximum ventilation. The storage bag also makes it ultra-portable.
  • includes six stakes for stability
  • inflatable slide for added fun
  • helps build muscles and coordination
Brand Little Tikes
Model 620072X1
Weight 40.2 pounds
1
The Blast Zone Rainforest Rapids is the ultimate bounce house for a kid's summer party. It features two water slides that kids can access from inside the house by climbing up a pair of cliffs, and it can accommodate up to six children at a time.
  • tiki lagoon area
  • inflates in mere minutes
  • blower and patch kit included
Brand Blast Zone
Model INF-RRAP
Weight 115.5 pounds

Jump For The Joys Of A Bounce House

When you think of a child's birthday party, what types of iconic imagery come to mind? Birthday cakes, clowns, sunny weather, music, presents, and hopefully a lot fun.

It's a safe bet that if you think back on some of these childhood parties, some of the images that come to mind include the great time you experienced with your friends, the games you played, and the structures that may have been present for you all to play on. One of these structures was probably a bounce house (or inflatable castle).

With the invention of so many high-tech gadgets like video games, cell phones, and a host of other electronic toys, you might think it would be increasingly difficult to get your kids outside in the fresh air to jump up and down on one of these nostalgic structures, but kids are imaginative and there's still something to be said about good, old-fashioned playtime without all the buttons and flashy screens.

Now, you can certainly rent one of these bounce houses, but if it's something unique that is relatively easy to keep inflated and an experience that your kids can enjoy over and over, then why not purchase one to own instead?

As the name suggests, a bounce house is a temporary inflatable structure that is often designed with themes, bright colors and shaped like elaborate buildings or castles. The exterior surfaces of most bounce houses are constructed from durable Polyvinyl chloride (PVC), vinyl, or nylon materials and are typically inflated using an electric fan or blower.

Regardless of the materials used for the bounce house, its seams feature small pores that will naturally leak air as children play on it, so the electric fan operates continuously to blow fresh air into the structure to keep it inflated. Most bounce houses are supported by inflatable columns and offer strong netting enclosures on 3 sides for close supervision of your children as they play.

Bounce houses provide several benefits. For one thing, they're actually healthy for growing kids to play on. With each jump, a child improves his or her cardio fitness level. Jumping also helps to increase bone density, while developing growing muscles, joints, and ligaments. The act of jumping also increases a child's metabolism, so if they have a tendency to be on the lazy side during the summer months, using a bounce house can be a great way to lose some excess weight. This type of structure can also be of excellent therapeutic benefit to kids with certain sensory impairments.

In addition to the benefit of exercise, bounce houses also provide a means for themed games and activities. Some are designed in the shape of jungles, basketball courts, or boxing rings with various markers and tasks to be accomplished from inside. Such activities and challenges can include tug of war and racing among others.

A Brief History Of Bounce Houses

Inspired by watching his own employees jump up and down on inflatable tennis court covers, mechanical engineer John Scurlock was responsible for inventing the very first inflatable structure in 1959. Scurlock eventually built an array of inflatable tents, domes, and he also pioneered the design of the safety air cushions used by modern fire departments for catching people forced to jump from high places.

Scurlock's continued fascination with his employees' sense of fun eventually lead him to start a company in New Orleans called Space Walks, where he further perfected the concept of the bounce house. As such bounce houses simulated a feeling of near weightlessness, they were sometimes referred to as moonwalks.

In 1968, Scurlock's wife Frances founded the first inflatable rental company and by 1976, the couple opened up a manufacturing facility to produce and rent the products out, while also promoting them for children's birthday parties, fairs, and picnics among other events. The only problem with some of the early inflatables was that they lacked an enclosure.

As one might expect, this created a potential safety hazard. Many of them also had a tendency to overheat. However, this problem was eventually resolved with the addition of walls and circulating air. Frank Scurlock (son of John and Frances) also set up his own rental concept using the names Space Walk and Inflatable Zoo and by the mid-eighties, Frank created the first indoor inflatable play park called the Fun Factory. A year later in 1987, Frank opened a second location called Fun Plex.

By the 1990s, Frank Scurlock developed the first inflatable water slide called the Aqua Tunnel. Both the bounce house and inflatable water slide are still popular today.

Walking On Air

Since safety is of the utmost concern when investing in a bounce house, one must be certain to find a structure with a sturdy enclosure and durable netting, which will make it easy to keep track of your little ones as they play. Mesh walls and netting not only improve your visibility, but the material also helps to maximize airflow from within the bounce house itself.

If your kids love sports themes, definitely look for a versatile bounce house that offers activities besides simple jumping up and down (i.e. soccer goals or basketball hoops).

Bounce house materials should always be durable and relatively easy to keep clean. Industrial-strength PVC material is recommended as it can withstand a heavy amount of activity from multiple little jumpers without tearing.

Finally, one should be sure the bounce house chosen includes a strong air pump that is powerful enough to keep the unit inflated and the fun flowing for extended periods of time.



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Last updated: 03/22/2017 | Authorship Information

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