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Which toddler swing is best?

A toddler swing provides extra coverage and support for 2- to 4-year-olds who are still learning about the world around them. Compact and safety-minded, a toddler swing is a great indoor or outdoor toy that will help get your child ready for the playground. The Squirrel Products Original High-Back Full-Bucket Swing is a sturdy swing that’s easy to use and maintain.

What to know before you buy a toddler swing

Hanging vs. freestanding

Toddler swings are made to hang from a strong bar,  whether by themselves or from the steel frame of a swing set

  • Hanging swings include the seat and the rope or chain required for attachment, but not the structure from which you hang it. They are mostly for outdoor use, but some fabric versions are designed for enclosed spaces that don’t get wet. 
  • Freestanding swings come with the swing and the frame. They are mostly for indoor use but some are suitable for outdoors, provided weather conditions are not severe.


A freestanding swing is usually made from plastic with a steel frame. A hanging swing can be constructed from plastic, wood or canvas. All are suspended by some kind of rope and can feature metal hooks. 

  • Plastic: The seat is made from hard plastic, using either a bucket design or a T-bar design with buckles for safety. Plastic is easy to clean, and sometime T-bar designs are convertible so that the seat adapts as your child grows.
  • Wood: Eco-friendly and stylish, a wood swing is durable and can be crafted into fun shapes. The sides go up high all around and there is usually no buckle.
  • Canvas: Framed using wood, this swing is comfortable, lightweight and machine-washable. There can be a buckle, but not all canvas swings include one.

Weight capacity

A hanging swing has a weight capacity of 40 to 200 pounds, depending on how adaptable it is for older children. A freestanding swing holds less weight, with a standard capacity of 40-60 pounds.  

Remember that a hanging swing rests higher up while a freestanding swing sits lower to the ground. This won’t affect the weight capacity but does make a difference when it comes to whether your toddler’s feet will eventually touch the ground as they grow.

What to look for in a quality toddler swing

Easy to clean

Toddlers can get messy, especially when they are still toilet training or have been playing in the grass outside. You want a swing that’s easy to clean. This means a swing that can be spot cleaned with a wet paper towel or can go in the washing machine as needed to stay fresh.

Sensory play

A lot of great toddler toys engage sensory play in multiple ways. A swing with bright colors, built-in toys or additional tactile surfaces engage your child’s senses. They give your child more ways to interact with their surroundings as they develop. 


Since kids tend to grow quickly, a swing that converts to accommodate different ages and sizes goes a long way. Most convertible swings feature at least one or two alterations that let your little one use them beyond the toddler years. This is especially true for hanging swings, which tend to hold more weight. 

How much you can expect to spend on a toddler swing

A hanging toddler swing costs $25 to $125. A freestanding toddler swing runs $40 to $250.

Toddler swing FAQ

Do you need tools to set it up?

A. You’ll need a screwdriver to set up most plastic swings. Whether extra tools are required depends on what you want to suspend the swing from. 

Where can the swing be hung?

A. Most hanging swings can be secured to a swing set, tree, pull-up bar or other secure framework that provides the right height. Make sure the swing is approved for outdoor use before setting it up permanently outside. 

What’s the best toddler swing to buy?

Top toddler swing

Best Squirrel Products Original High Back Full Bucket Swing

Squirrel Products Original High Back Full Bucket Swing

What you need to know: This green hanging bucket swing is made from plastic and has a weight capacity of 150 pounds.

What you’ll love: It’s durable, with a higher back than most bucket swings. It has plastic-dipped brackets on a 66-inch metal chain to keep fingers from getting pinched. It’s easy to clean and doesn’t require any assembly. It holds up well outside. 

What you should consider: There are no buckles or safety straps.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top toddler swing for the money

Best Step2 Infant To Toddler Swing Seat

Step2 Infant to Toddler Swing Seat

What you need to know: This blue front-loading hanging swing is made of plastic, with a T-bar closure and a weight capacity of 50 pounds. 

What you’ll love: It’s durable, comfortable and easy to clean. It’s weather-resistant and is compatible with most swing sets. There are two buckles on the T-bar for security. Braided ropes prevent pinched fingers.

What you should consider: Assembly is required.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon and Wayfair

Worth checking out

Best Monkey & Mouse Canvas Swing Seat

Monkey & Mouse Canvas Swing Seat

What you need to know: This bucket hanging swing is made from canvas protected from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, with a beechwood frame and a weight capacity of 110 pounds.

What you’ll love: It’s cushioned, comfortable and comes with a buckle for extra safety. There are wooden balls and rings for your child to play with and you can use the swing inside or outside. The canvas is machine-washable.

What you should consider: Assembly is easy and doesn’t require tools, but does include several steps. It should not be left outside for long periods of time, especially uncovered. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Emily Verona writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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