5 Best Soft Play Equipment For Babies and Toddlers (Oct 2021)

Using soft play equipment in your home setting is a brilliant way for your tot on-the-move to learn safely through play. Experiencing new textures, colours, and obstacles, your little one can explore climbing whilst staying safe! In this article, I will be reviewing the best soft play equipment for babies and toddlers.

What is The Best Soft Play Equipment?

IMAGERECOMMENDED PRODUCTSPRODUCTFEATURES
  • Six Piece Soft Play Set
  • Vinyl Covered Firm Foam
  • Water-Resistant Bright Colours
  • Ballpit and Slide Set
  • High-Density Foam Interior
  • Wipe-clean PVC Covering
  • Two-Piece Slide and Stairs
  • High-Density Foam Interior
  • Washable PVC Cover
  • Dense Foam Stationary Tractor
  • PVC Wipeable Cover
  • Dimensions 100cm x 25cm x 40cm
  • Six Piece Soft Play Set
  • Soft yet Firm Polyethylene Foam
  • Wipe Clean Artificial Leather Covering

Soft Play Equipment Reviews

IGLU Brand Soft Play Equipment

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FEATURES
  • Six Piece Soft Play Set
  • Vinyl Covered Firm Foam
  • Water-Resistant Bright Colours
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IGLU Brand Soft Play Equipment Review

This IGLU Brand Soft Play Equipment has to be the best set for youngsters out there! Made from soft vinyl-covered foam, these six play shapes fix together to make one big home soft play set, which is excellent for babies and toddlers on the move!

The vinyl covering on this soft play equipment is convenient for households as it is wipe-friendly and full of bright, fun colors for children’s sensory learning.

This soft play set of 6 shapes sits at an affordable price and with the polyethylene foam in its interior, the core of the shapes are robust but very soft to ensure a safe and cushioned landing for any falls or bumps whilst developing motor skills.

The blocks provide a great home learning set for toddlers and babies where they can learn to climb without getting hurt, though the foam is soft it is firm enough for adults to sit on without it sinking down.

I would vote this IGLU set the best soft play for home due to its size, durability, and water-resistant material to avoid any possible mess!

Pros

  • Opportunity to develop babies motor skills
  • Sturdy to bear weight of variety of ages
  • Bright colors for baby sensory learning

Cons

  • Base can be a bit slippery as no grip pad on underside

Implay® Soft Play Children's Multi-Coloured Square Ball Pool

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FEATURES
  • Ballpit and Slide Set
  • High-Density Foam Interior
  • Wipe-clean PVC Covering
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Implay® Soft Play Children's Multi-Coloured Square Ball Pool Review

A ball pit, slide, and stairs all in one, we have the Implay Soft Play Children’s Square Ball Pool.

This soft play set has a slightly higher price tag than others but it makes up for the price with all of the exciting features it boasts for your little one!

Made from high-density foam with a PVC rip-stop covering, this soft play equipment is durable, long-lasting, and offers much fun learning experiences for young children.

Measuring 120cm by 120cm, this soft play for home set is ideal for a playroom and can be taken apart to use as two separate pieces of equipment, giving you a single ball pit and a separate slide with stairs.

This soft play at home equipment is a great learning experience for babies as it teaches them sensory learning. From feeling the different textures to seeing the bright colours, this softplay set is the top pick for a baby’s early year’s development.

The robust underside material of this kid’s soft play means it is suitable for outdoor use as well as indoor, so you can bring the fun outside with you to keep your little one entertained in the garden!

Pros

  • Bright colours for baby colour recognition
  • Premium quality for long-lasting use
  • Can come apart and used as separate sections

Cons

  • Balls not included

Implay® Soft Play Children's First Climb & Slide Play Set

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FEATURES
  • Two-Piece Slide and Stairs
  • High-Density Foam Interior
  • Washable PVC Cover
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Implay® Soft Play Children's First Climb & Slide Play Set Review

Looking for a soft play set for your little one to stop them climbing on the furniture? This Implay Soft Play First Climb & Slide Play Set is a brilliant piece of home soft play that is ideal for babies that are suddenly on the go and older tots that love to climb!

Made from high-density foam with a washable PVC cover, this baby soft play for home is an excellent addition to add to the playroom. The two parts can be used and stored separately for more convenient storage and adaptable imaginative play!

This soft play equipment measures 120 x 50 x 30 cm, making it an ideal size for babies and toddlers as it’s not too big, and the cushioned consistency ensures a safe landing.

Baby soft play is vital for early development, so with this climb and slide set your little one can develop their cognitive development whilst having imaginative fun all at once!

Pros

  • Ease of storage due to size and two parts
  • Develops baby and toddler cognitive play
  • Durable to bear the weight of older children

Cons

  • Two pieces do not attach together, may be worth attaching velcro

Implay® Soft Play Children's Tractor Ride-On

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FEATURES
  • Dense Foam Stationary Tractor
  • PVC Wipeable Cover
  • Dimensions 100cm x 25cm x 40cm
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Implay® Soft Play Children's Tractor Ride-On Review

This Implay Soft Play Children’s Tractor is a simple yet effective piece of soft play equipment that will for sure be a hit with your little one. Whether it’s to play with, climb on, or use as a chair, this baby soft play ride-on is a great addition to any playroom.

Measuring 100 x 25 x 40 cm this tractor ride-on is a great piece of soft play for home that can be tucked away in the corner when out of use, or even carried around elsewhere with ease due to its size and weight.

Covered in a wipe-friendly PVC material, this kid’s soft play toy is suitable for both indoor and outdoor use due to its sturdy, waterproof material that can be effortlessly cleaned after use if need be.

The interior of the tractor is high-density foam, which is firm enough to take the weight of babies and children but soft enough to support any impact.

This piece of kids soft play equipment is a great way for your child to experience learning through play, using their imagination, and also working their motor skills.

Pros

  • Encourages children's imaginative play
  • Robust structure for babies and older toddlers
  • Waterproof for outdoor and indoor use

Cons

  • This ride on is stationary so does not have wheels or move around

IGLU 6 XL Soft Play Shapes Soft Play Equipment

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FEATURES
  • Six Piece Soft Play Set
  • Soft yet Firm Polyethylene Foam
  • Wipe Clean Artificial Leather Covering
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IGLU 6 XL Soft Play Shapes Soft Play Equipment Review

When it comes to kid’s soft play equipment it’s a bigger bonus if the equipment itself develops the child’s imaginative learning as well as cognitive development. This IGLU Soft Play Shapes Equipment does exactly that.

Included in this soft play set are six colourful shapes, each are made from polyethylene foam with a closed-cell structure, meaning they are lightweight, soft, and safe for all little ones to play with, or on!

Each soft play shape is covered with brightly coloured artificial leather, making them wipe-friendly and easy to clean.

This is a great set for soft play at home as the shapes can all be used individually or joined together to make one big playset! Making play more open and flexible and storage a lot more compact if you did want to store away after use. When joined together for full size the home soft play measures 20 x 120 x 80 cm, individually they can be used as smaller shapes to make all different things such as steps, ramps, forts, and other fun things!

Pros

  • Shapes are not fixed so can move around to preference
  • Appropriate sizes for babies and toddlers
  • Velcro included for anti-slip

Cons

  • May be smaller than expected so check measurements beforehand

What is Soft Play?

Soft play equipment is a form of children’s entertainment which in turn build children’s physical, mental, and social development.

Soft play consists of equipment usually made of high-density foam covered in a strong, wipeable PVC material or something similar. This equipment can be available for home use like the products listed, but soft play is often known as play centres for babies and toddlers.

Using bright colours and a variety of shapes, children experience early years learning through soft play as they experience new textures, colours, and obstacles.

Why is Soft Play Important?

Early Years Development 

Soft play is a great stepping stone for babies’ and toddlers’ development. Through jumping,  climbing, stepping, crawling, balancing, and swinging children are able to experience risk with the safety of a soft landing.

Children can develop their fine and gross motor skills through soft play, as well as improve their core strength and coordination.  Soft play can assist with balance and makes children aware of their emotions, body, and surroundings, thus helping with spatial awareness. 

Having soft play equipment at home is very good for babies’ and toddlers’ creativity as it develops their imagination, dexterity, and physical, cognitive, and emotional strength.  The various sizes and obstacles help the child to gain confidence, working through challenges and letting them find their limits and potential. 

New Experiences

Soft play gives children the opportunity to experience and experiment with movement and with movement comes speech and language skills, which in turn helps them with their social skills and ability to explain what they are feeling, and what they are enjoying. A way soft play assists with this is when a child may need to ask for extra help, or they may want you to play on the equipment with them. 

Having soft play equipment in a home setting also helps children experience different textures, materials, and colours and teaches them to understand “cause and effect”.  Young children’s natural curiosity is satisfied when they discover what effect a certain action is likely to have. 

Who Invented Soft Play?

Eric McMillan who came from England was the “founder of soft play”.  He installed his first playground in the 1970s, and he became the world’s leading designer of children’s soft play centres.

He built the first ball pit for Sea World’s Captain Kids World in San Diego in 1976 and got his inspiration from looking at a jar of pickled onions and thought “wow, how about if you could crawl through them”!  This gave him the idea to build his first ball pit.

McMillan developed his concept for soft play because he wanted to inspire activity.  All the soft play spaces he built were designed to appeal to his inner child.  “A child needs play areas he can affect directly with his senses and curiosity”.  To a child, play and learning are exactly the same processes.

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