With recent heat waves sweeping the nation, many people seek to stay cool this summer, such as visiting the beach or purchasing outdoor play sprinklers. And if you have access to a pool, you’ll probably want some toys, floats, and other accessories to make swimming more enjoyable.
There are several options available for the entire family’s enjoyment, including large inflatable balls, basketball hoops, water blasters, and pool noodles. To assist you in sifting through the seemingly endless options available online, we have compiled a list of highly rated pool toys for kids and families that will help you beat the summer heat.
A brief guide to the safety of pool toys
Even though all pool toys can enhance your summer swimming sessions, you should always take the necessary safety precautions, especially when children are present. When it comes to floats and inflatable toys, Emily Samuel, program director for Safe Kids Worldwide, advised us in our guide to pool noodles that you’ll still need to keep an eye on children in the pool and ensure that young children are within arm’s reach of an adult. Most floating toys, including pool noodles, are not intended to protect children from drowning.
In addition to supervision and reading the manufacturer’s instructions before using a toy, there are a few additional pool toy safety tips to consider.
- Before using toys, check for signs of wear and tear, such as holes and cracks, which can lead to leaks or the toy sinking. You may also want to inspect the toy for insects, especially if it has been stored for a while.
- Disinfecting your pool toys is an effective way to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria. Pool Store Inc. suggests mixing one gallon of water with sixteen ounces of bleach and scrubbing the toy with a brush while wearing gloves and eye protection.
- Securing toys after use protects them from weather and sun damage, but it can also prevent a child from drowning if they decide to play with them on the spur of the moment.
Best pool toys this summer
Due to its affordability, durability, and ability to amuse children of different ages. If you’re looking for toys for advanced swimmers, you’ve come to the right place. A pool toy exists for every child, including splash balls, squirters, noodles, and diving rings.
Given that each child’s swimming abilities vary, it can be challenging to find the ideal one. We considered cost, style, durability, and safety when evaluating pool toys. According to our research, these are the most entertaining pool toys.
1. Swimming Pool Basketball Hoop Set
Swimming Pool Basketball Hoop Set by Hoop Shark – Orange/Blue – Inflatable Hoop with Ball – Perfect for Competitive Water Play and Trick Shots – Ultimate Summer Toy
With this inflatable basketball hoop, family and friends can demonstrate their basketball prowess without leaving the pool. It comes with a textured basketball for improved grip. The manufacturer claims the hoop can be quickly inflated and deflated, making it easier to store, and it measures 40 inches in height when fully inflated.
2. Max Liquidator 6-Pack Water Blaster Set
Max Liquidator 6-Pack Water Blaster Set
The entire family can use this 6-pack water shooter set for a competitive twist on a traditional pool day. Pull the handle back to load the cannon with water, aim at your target, and push the handle forward to fire a stream of water. Additionally, it is lightweight for portability and floats on water. The toy is suggested for children aged six and older.
3. Watermelon Swimming Pool Game
Watermelon Ball – The Ultimate Swimming Pool Game | Pool Ball for Under Water Passing, Dribbling, Diving and Pool Games for Teens, Kids, or Adults | 9 in. Ball Fills with Water
The Watermelon Ball is a water-filled ball designed to resemble the buoyancy of a watermelon. The ball will sink and slowly rise to the surface when thrown into the water. Additionally, the ball can be bounced, dribbled, and passed underwater, making it ideal for various water games. The Watermelon Ball includes a hose adapter and a filling needle for water filling.
4. Water Sports Swim Thru Rings, Swimming Pool Toys
Water Sports Swim Thru Rings, Swimming Pool Toys for Summer Activities and Outdoor Games, Assorted Pack
The Water Sports Swim Thru Rings is an innovative and novel way to enjoy your pool time. The Water Sports Swim Thru Rings features a set of collapsible rings with adjustable air chambers, allowing you to alter the underwater depth to your liking. These Rings are a fantastic way to spice up your swimming routine and test your aquatic prowess.
5. Aqua Large Stingray Glider
Aqua Large Stingray Glider – Single Pack – Underwater Pool Toy with Adjustable Fins Travel Up to 60 Feet – Navy/Light Blue
The manufacturer claims that this stingray-shaped glider can propel forward up to 60 feet underwater. You can adjust both wings on the sides to customize the aircraft’s flight patterns, allowing you to make it fly straight or at an angle. This glider has a length of 8 inches and a width of approximately 10 inches. It is recommended for children aged five and up.
6. Texas Recreation Floating Foam Ring Toss Game
Texas Recreation Floating Foam Ring Toss Game for Swimming Pools, Caribbean Coral
The Texas Rec Ring Toss Game is a family-friendly activity! Playable in and out of the water! Vinyl-coated closed-cell foam for durability; easy to clean and disinfect. The ring toss consists of four rings (two sizes and two colors), each vinyl coated. This game is simple to assemble and disassemble for storage purposes.
7. Melissa & Doug Sunny Patch Spark Shark Toss and Catch Net Pool Game
Melissa & Doug Sunny Patch Spark Shark Toss and Catch Net Pool Game With 2 Balls
This exciting pool game features two excellent nets, two foam balls, and a formidable challenge: can you make the day’s catch? This whimsically designed toss-and-catch set with bright colors and a “toothy” personality promotes hand-eye coordination, social skills, and outdoor fun! Play suggestions will inspire hours of enjoyment in and out of the pool.
Melissa & Doug has produced imaginative and creatively stimulating products for more than three decades, which NBC News has called “the gold standard in early childhood play.” We design each toy to the highest quality standards and to nurture minds and hearts. Call us if your child is not inspired, and we will make it right. Our telephone number is printed on every item!
8. Green Toys Submarine
Green Toys Submarine – BPA, Phthalate Free Blue Watercraft with Spinning Rear Propeller Made from Recycled Materials. Safe Toys for Toddlers
Take command of the My First Green Toys Submarine for a voyage to protect the environment! Submerge it in water to investigate the terrain at the bottom of the tub, and then allow it to resurface to scan the horizon for its next adventure.
This durable watercraft features a spinning rear propeller, a flat bottom for increased stability, and the classic handle and wide-mouth opening for hours of scoop-and-pour fun. The cabin can be opened for straightforward cleaning, and the entire vessel is dishwasher safe.
9. SwimWays Mesh Floating Pool Chair Noodle Slings
SwimWays Mesh Floating Pool Chair Noodle Slings (4 Pack)
Using the SwimWays Mesh Pool Chair Noodle Slings, you can fashion your floating chair. These mesh slings only require a pool noodle (not included) to become the ideal floating seat. Thread the noodle through the fabric holes on the back of the sling; no inflation is necessary.
Sit and float on the soft, soothing mesh and take relaxation to the next level by submerging yourself partially in the water. This value pack contains four mesh noodle slings, making them ideal for everyday pool use and outdoor parties as a fun and inexpensive way to provide pool floats for the entire group.
Use a thin noodle for children and a wider noodle for adults to customize these versatile pool chairs for children and adults, respectively. These mesh slings are recommended for noodles measuring 55″ x 3.25″, with a maximum outer ring diameter of 3.3″. It is recommended for kids aged five and older.
10. Sunlite Sports Football Pool Toys
Sunlite Sports Football, Waterproof, Outdoor Sports and Pool Toy, Beach Game, for Kids and Adults, Neoprene Red, 9"
Playing an outdoor football game is a great way to strengthen family ties. While running and giggling, a lasting memory is created and shared by all participants. Grab a football and start moving!
Sunlite Sports Football is the most innovative new football on the market. Play at the beach, in the park, in the backyard, or anywhere else that sports are played. The traditional sports bladder and genuine laces give the ball a professional feel, while the Neoprene coating ensures a secure, comfortable grip. Without a doubt, both children and adults enjoy the new Sunlite Sports football. This design will blow your peers out of the water.
How We Chose the Top Pool Toys
We selected the best pool toys by reading customer and competitor reviews and analyzing the features of dozens of available products. We considered price, design, features, ease of cleaning, age recommendations, and material when making our selections. We also consulted a pediatrician for any additional considerations or product suggestions while reviewing the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines for purchasing safe toys.
What To Consider When Shopping For Pool Toys
It’s a good idea to keep an eye on your child regardless of where they’re playing, but it’s especially crucial when it comes to pool toys. The addition of water to playtime introduces several new considerations. To ensure that your children have a fun and safe time, here are a few guidelines for selecting pool toys:
Ensure that you abide by pool safety rules before accessing the toys. Always keep an eye on your child when he or she is in or near water, have a phone handy in case of an emergency, and have the proper equipment, such as a floatation device, on hand. It is always good to seek out toys that adhere to ASTM standards when purchasing them.
Ironically, many outdoor toys cannot withstand the elements and quickly deteriorate. Consider whether you have a place to store pool toys when they are not in use; if not, purchase durable and weatherproof items.
Some bright and exciting toys may appeal to young children, but they won’t be able to use them until they are a bit older. Ensure that you only use toys that are appropriate for the age of your children. Large inflatables risk capsizing and submerging small children, making them especially hazardous for them.
Depending on your child’s swimming ability, you should choose different pool toys for their playtime. Choose toys that float for children who cannot swim to the bottom of the pool and retrieve them. The ability to swim is essential for any child who will be spending time around or in a pool.
These toys will likely be thrown around a pool for years, so they must withstand rough treatment and extensive water contact. You do not want your pool toys to be less waterproof than advertised or break.
Best Pool Toys For Kids This Summer - Frequently Asked Questions
A pool toy is a toy designed specifically for use in the water. Numerous options are available, such as balls, floats, sports toys, dolls, and diving toys. Most pool toys are made of plastic or foam and can be used to relax and teach children to swim.
Because it is such a classic, the pool noodle is one of the most popular and best-selling pool toys. The flexible foam float offers a variety of ways to have fun, and both children and adults can use it. Whether the children are engaging in a pretend lightsaber battle, or the adults are using them as u-shaped pool seats, they offer a versatile means of water-based entertainment.
Splash balls are constructed from various materials, such as foam and plastic. Regardless of which you choose, they are all designed to float on the water’s surface, even when they are full. This design makes it unnecessary to dive to the bottom of the pool to retrieve them.
Pumps and air compressors should be utilized. Breyer states that an air compressor or electric air pump is the quickest and easiest way to inflate a pool toy. You can use a bicycle pump or your lungs to inflate a bicycle tire, but it will take significantly longer. Manually blowing into the air inlet should only be done if the toy is tiny or as a last resort.
Occasionally, floaties include patches, a complete repair kit, or neither. If the latter, pick up a couple of extra patches in case a floatie deflation emergency occurs, which is inevitable. You can also use duct tape or a strong adhesive such as shoe glue; make sure that whatever you use is waterproof.
Breyer suggests that, for maximum durability, pool toys should be cleaned and stored in an excellent, dry location. She explains that the sun, saltwater, and chlorine can deteriorate a pool toy’s materials and shorten its lifespan. First, wash them with dish soap and warm water. Then, Casares suggests allowing the pool toys at least four hours to dry completely in the sun between uses.
As summer draws close, you should consider where and how you will store your pool toys—initially, clean and dry pool toys as described above. Next, deflate them entirely and fold them gently so they can be stacked and stored in airtight containers, such as vacuum-sealed bags. (They will prevent mold, mildew, and insects from destroying your floaties.) Finally, store them until next summer in the garage, basement, or storage closet.
When not in use, remove your pool toys from the water and place them in a clean, shady location. Due to the sun, chemicals, and heat, leaving toys floating in water will hasten their decomposition, making them more susceptible to bursting or developing holes.
Infants do not require much to enjoy themselves. A few items that they can hold in their hands, put in their mouths, and drop into the water will suffice. I recommend toys such as the Hippo Net Scoop and Splash Balls for them to throw around. They are also excellent pool toys for kiddie pools.
Summer is one of the best times for water play. Apply sunscreen, invite a friend over, and let your child spend the day laughing and swimming. You can participate in the activity or observe from the side; both options are enjoyable.
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