They call them activity mats, smart gyms or sometimes even play mats, but what really are they? And how do I choose the right one for me? Do not fear we have gathered a few hints for you :
What is it?
So basically activity mats are soft, puffy, padded, textured & coloured mats, packed with loads of activities for your child.
What are the benefits?
Activity mats help with babies’ senses, fine and gross motor development. They are generally great to stimulate your baby and keep them busy, when you are trying to get things done around the house. They are also great, if your child is not too keen on tummy time, as the mat can keeps the little one entertained and distracted for quite a while.
Which age are they suitable for?
Most activity mats really can be used from birth on, but to be on the safe side make sure you check the description of each individual one as exceptions are always possible.
What can be included?
The mats really come in all sizes, shapes and colours which makes it quite hard to pick. Most of them are accompanied by arches of which some are removable, little detachable toys, soft shapes and jittering, crinkling bits and pieces. Often the mats include teethers, mirrors, ribbons, plastic rings and some kind of bells, squeakers or even touch activated music sections. You can even find mats which incorporate popular characters like the Dr. Seuss Cat In The Hat Discovery Mat. In many cases the mats come with some kind of play music or white noise. Some are even reversible to change things up every now and then and keep it more interesting. To be honest there are few boundaries when it comes to what is included in an activity mats.
To make it even harder we have selected some of our fancier play mats for you to have a look at. Here are four special pics to look at:
But before you all go, just a few final tips:
- Make sure the activity mat is washable, because we all know how messy life sometimes gets; especially when we are having fun.
- If you are looking for a travel activity mat, carry handles definitely are a must.
- And last but not least, make sure to take a look at the assembly as I am sure no one wants to fight for hours to get the mat going!
Now, go have a look at our selection of mats and let us know which one is your favourite and most importantly why!
Hello baby Intern