Toddler swim vest FAQsThere is some confusion surrounding toddler swim vests and some things about these devices that parents may not understand. To avoid misunderstanding, I wanted to go over some frequently asked questions before I start talking about the best toddler swim vest.
What are swim vests?A swim vest is a flotation device. They are not a lifejacket or a floatie. They fall somewhere in between and act as a swim aid. They help keep your child buoyant and are best for use when your child is learning to swim. They may not always keep your child’s head above water, though. They also often have designs or characters on them to make them more appealing to toddlers, who can often be resistant to wearing such things.
What’s the difference between swim vests and floaties?Floaties are different from swim vests in that they are often not fixed on the child. A child is buckled into the swim vest and some even have leg straps to keep the vest on the child. Toddler floaties, on the other hand, are usually more like toys that a child can hold on to. Even arm floaties, which are worn, can still easily come off and do not offer the same buoyancy as a swim vest.
What’s the difference between swim vests and life jackets?Life jackets are made for all age groups whereas swim vests are only for toddlers. They also are a lifesaving personal flotation device, meaning they can keep a child from drowning. Life jackets usually have more bulk and may be uncomfortable for a child to wear when playing in the water.
At what age should my kids wear swim vests?You should start using a swim vest once your child reaches the minimum weight for the vest you choose. Typically, this is around age three, but it could be earlier. You want to use this device as a tool when teaching your child to swim.
What are the benefits of using swimming vests?Using swimming vests gives you the chance to make water more fun for everyone. Often when you introduce toddlers to the pool, they are clingy due to fear. This not only takes away the chance of being able to teach them to swim, but it also ruins the whole experience. You want swimming to be fun, so using a swim aid can give them and you some freedom. Furthermore, when teaching your child to swim, he or she needs to be somewhat independent. Using a swim aid eliminates the automatic sinking and helps a child feel more in control of the situation. Swim vests also allow a child to play in the water without letting him or her dive or go under the way in dangerous ways. So, toddlers still can have fun, but with a little safety.
Choosing the right toddler swim vestChoosing the right swim vest is going to be very personal and should match your child’s needs. Here’s a rundown of the different considerations to make:
- Size – You should always look at the manufacturer’s suggested weight. These vests are sold by weight because they are designed to keep a child of a specific weight buoyant.
- Fit – Before buying a vest, always try it on your child. Make sure it fits snuggly yet is comfortable enough for your child to move.
- Construction – Look at the overall construction to ensure the material is thick enough to not be torn easily and the straps and buckles are secure. Make sure your child cannot easily undo the straps, as well.
- UVA/UVB protection – Sun protection is always important. If a vest has protection, that can be a plus.
- Coast Guard approval – Not all swim vests have this approval because they are not designed as PFDs, but some of them may.
- Review – Look over the reviews the product has gotten from customers. Check into the rating as well. Get a good idea of how the vest functions in the real world.
Best toddler swim vestsLooking over customer ratings and product information, I have compiled a list of the six top toddler swim vests on the market. Here is my review of each of them.
- The Stearns Original Puddle Jumper Life Jackets have been tested and approved by the U.S. Coast Guard for use as Type...
- Meet strict requirements for use on boats, in public pools, and at water parks that require Coast Guard-approved devices
- Nylon shell for durability
- SWIM TRAINER VEST – LEVEL 2 – PROMOTE CONFIDENCE & PLAY: Swim Trainer Vest supports your child in feeling...
- FLEX-FORM, ADJUSTABLE, SECURE FIT: Trainer vest is easy to wear and remove with padded shoulders, a heavy-duty zipper...
- BUILT-IN FLEX-FORM FOAM PADS: Balanced flotation and designed to place child in the prone (swim) position for learning...
- Swim Level 2: Water Confidence - These products provide the tools to build confidence for a child already familiar with...
- UV50+ Block the Burn protection from the sun's harmful UVA and UVB rays
- Soft, durable neoprene construction for warmth and buoyancy
- RECOMMENDED BY STARFISH AQUATICS INSTITUTE: Konfidence Swim Jackets are the ONLY ones recommended by the Starfish...
- OVER 20 YEARS EXPERIENCE: Konfidence Swim Jackets benefits from over 20 years’ experience. We have become an industry...
- SAFE AND EASY TO USE: Its British designed features include 8 simple to remove floats to adapt to your child’s needs...
- Swim trainer – level 2 – promote confidence & play: swim trainer vest supports your child in feeling comfortable in...
- Adjustable, secure fit: trainer vest is easy to wear and remove with sun protective sleeves, padded shoulders, a...
- Built-in foam pads: balanced flotation and designed to place child in the prone (swim) position for learning...
What’s the best toddler swim vest?The best toddler swim vest out of this group by far is the Stearns Puddle Jumper Basic Life Jacket. This product has pages and pages of positive reviews, and it isn’t hard to see why. It pretty much wins in every single area when comparing it to the other swim vests. Not only is this Coast Guard-approved, but it is also completely adjustable with the buckle in the back, so your child cannot get out of it by him or herself. In addition, it will keep your child floating above the water. As an approved PFD, this swim vest provides you with a peace of mind that you can let your child have a little independence as you swim together.
How I picked the best toddler swim vestI felt that if I was buying my child a swim vest to wear on one of our beach outings that this is the one I would choose hands-down. It was hard to find anything negative about this vest. Even when I did read negative reviews, it felt like it was more a consumer issue and not an actual product issue. The Stearns Puddle Jumper just kept coming out on top. In fact, I see kids wearing these all the time. They have a distinct look, so it isn’t difficult to spot them. It seems like every kid at the beach wears one. I take that as a good sign that these are reliable and that kids like to wear them, which is also a big deal. Fighting to get your kid into a swim vest is never fun, so on this point alone, the Puddle Jumper won me over. However, the big picture is this swim vest just outperforms the others by miles.
Relevant accessories to buyIf you buy your child a swim vest, then you should consider other accessories that can keep your child safe while in the water and out in the sun. Don’t just stop at the flotation device. Here are some suggestions:
- ✅ SAVE HUNDREDS: SWITCH TO THE BEST ECO-FRIENDLY REUSABLE SWIM DIAPER What's better than looking enviably-cute, saving...
- ✅ SUPERIOR QUALITY, ADJUSTABLE, WASHABLE & REUSABLE SWIM DIAPER The Nageuret line of reusable cloth swim diapers are...
- ✅ WATERPROOF & STYLISH Outer shell is made from a premium soft breathable waterproof 100% PUL polyester cloth fabric...
- SEAL KID 2 KIDS SWIM MASK – The evolution of the original swim mask for children! The Seal Kid 2 delivers a leak-free...
- 180-DEGREE DISTORTION-FREE VISIBILITY – Aqua Sphere’s revolutionary curved lens technology gives kids the clearest...
- E-Z ADJUST BUCKLE SYSTEM – Say no more to constantly adjusting and still getting leakage for your child! The...
Swimming safety tipsEven when your child is wearing a swim vest, you have to keep an eye on him or her. Children should never be left alone in or around the water. Here are some additional tips to keep in mind to help ensure your child stays safe and has fun:
- Teach your child about the dangers of water and make strict rules for the pool area of your home.
- Do not allow running or horseplay around the pool.
- Enforce pool rules. If someone breaks one, they are out of the pool.
- Keep your pool fenced off with a gate that locks.
- Remove pool toys after swimming time is over.
- Keep first aid supplies near the pool or take them with you when you go swimming at the beach.
- Teach your child to swim or send him or her to lessons as soon as possible.
Final review of toddler swim vestsLet’s face it. On a hot day, the last thing you want is to be cooped up inside with your kids, and even though I am not a huge fan of sand or bathing suits, my daughter loves the beach, so the best way to ensure Mommy doesn’t lose her mind is to head to the beach. It doesn’t hurt me to get a little Vitamin D, and my daughter can burn off some of that excess energy she always seems to have. Of course, as mothers, we still have to be safety-minded. Buying a toddler swim vest is a great start to keeping your child safe in the water. It gives them a little independence while also giving you peace of mind.
Last update on 2021-06-24 at 23:20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API