No matter what you call it, a baby crawling mat, play mat, baby play gym, or activity gym, the idea is basically the same. These are soft, durable, beautifully designed mats for your baby’s toys and playtime.
You can find these mats in a variety of designs, colors, and sizes. Each of them providing your little one with a safe and comfortable place to play and develop important skills.
Where is the best place for baby to play?
It is important to provide your baby with a soft- yet firm, play area. This area should also be a safe space for your baby to explore, free of sharp edges, or small pieces.
Baby play mats or crawling mats provide the perfect choice, and check all the boxes.
Why is floor time so important?
Child experts all agree that giving your baby adequate floor time and tummy time is beneficial and actually crucial to their overall development. Tummy time provides your baby with practice on several key muscles and increases your baby’s gross and fine motor skills, as well as hand-eye coordination.
Do babies need a crawling mat?
The reality is that even if we wanted to, we cannot hold our babies 24/7. Having a safe place where they can enjoy tummy time and play is so important.
Child development experts agree that tummy time is super important for our little ones, and having a comfortable place to allow our babies to enjoy tummy time makes it that much easier to fit into their day. Play mats offer a wide variety of experiences for your baby, whereas baby gear like swings and bouncers only offer a limited amount.
When can babies start using a crawling mat?
You are able to use a play mat with your baby from day one, but in general, older babies around 3-6 months of age will really begin to enjoy this soft and safe space to play.
As they begin rolling, scooting, and really aware of their environment, they will get the most use out of these mats. Your baby will be able to use the crawling mat to grasp for toys, increase hand-eye coordination, and to practice crawling and walking.
The benefits of having a floor mat for your baby
1. Provides a clean area to move and learn
Crawling mats provide a clean area free of small pieces or debris for your baby to learn to crawl, move around, and learn.
2. Safe space to move around
Because the mats are made of soft material and free of any sharp edges, they are a safe space for your little one to move, learn , and grow.
3. Soft spot if they fall or collapse
Babies are bound to take a few spills while they’re learning to crawl, stand, cruise, and walk. Providing them with a soft, cushioned space if they happen to fall or collapse down is a great advantage.
4. Protects floor from nicks or stains
Little ones are sure to make messes and damage your favorite things. Don’t let them destroy your floors too! Play mats can protect your floor from messy stains and scuffs as your little one’s are able to play freely.
Which types of play mats are best for your home?
There are a wide variety of choices out there when looking for baby crawling mats. Make your choice based on:
1. Type of flooring
Do you have hard floors or carpet? This can determine the type of play mat you may require. If your floors are hard, choosing a play mat with several soft layers can be very beneficial, and if your house is filled with carpet it may be harder to make puzzle piece mats stick together.
2. Space available in the room your choose
You may wonder what size your crawling mat should be, and this completely depends on the space available in your home. If you have a limited amount of space, it may be better to choose a smaller mat or a mat that can be folded or rolled up to store. Some mats are one large piece so you’ll need a full open area for the mat. Other’s are fit together like puzzle pieces so you can adjust the size and shape to fit your space accordingly.
3. Style choice
Gone are the days of brightly colored clashing foam mats, you can now choose mats in a variety of designs and colors, giving you the option to match your home decor. Choose a mat that complements your style and you will be more likely to display it.
4. Within budget
Budget is always important. Choose a mat that meets your needs, while also staying within your budget. They can get quite expensive, but you can also find more budget-friendly options.
Top 12 Choices for Baby Crawling Mats
Below are my top choices for baby crawling mats, and there are choices for every budget! Most can be found on Amazon.
1. Totter + Tumble
Totter + Tumble playmate are simple, stylish, supportive, and safe for your little ones. These non-toxic, antibacterial, playmats are built to last and easy to care for. Simply wipe them down with a gentle cleaning solution and cloth when they get soiled.
The subtle patterns are designed to complement your interior style and the coolest thing about them is that each mat is reversible! It’s like getting two mats for the price of one!
These playmats offer cushioning with memory foam for your little ones as they explore, learn and play.
2. House of Noa Play Mat
House of Noa has the most beautiful baby mats ever! They were also one of the first baby play mats to offer a stylish option for homes. Each large play mat is designed to look like a beautiful area rug and blend perfectly into your baby’s room or your living room.
You can choose from a variety of colors, including the best selling primary colors black and white. Each of the pieces fit together like a puzzle to make your experience seamless.
The House of Noa baby foam play mat is made with a wipe clean foam – just use mild soap and warm water to clean up and messes or spit up.
3. Toddlekind Play Mat
Toddlekind play mats are made with top-quality, nontoxic soft foam. They make a beautiful play space and are one of the best and beautiful baby floor mats around.
With a variety of designs, these playmats can transform any space into an elegant and tasteful space. These mats make a comfortable place and safe spot for babies of all ages including newborn babies.
Ruggish play mats give the look of a designer rug, with the soft feel of a play mat. These are a one-piece mat with a reversible design.
If you have an older child you can flip the rug over for an interactive play map on the underside, perfect for toy cars. These mats are durable, waterproof and easy to wipe clean, perfect for older babies.
5. Little Bot Play Mat
The Little Bot play mat is more than a large, single-foam baby play mat. It is an entire experience.
These playmats provide a safe space for babies to play, explore, and grow. These mats provide good cushioning, and a large play area for children and babies of all ages.
These are a great option for any family looking for a play mat. The floor mats are also one-piece, with a reversible design.
6. Baby Care Play Mat- Haute Collection
This play mat is a larger size- comparable to a queen mattress. You do not have to hassle with puzzle pieces.
The material is waterproof and reversible, plus easy to clean with baby wipes. They offer nice patterns and it’s much more affordable than some of the other options.
Monomats are one of the best play mats in my opinion. They are a great option for anyone who needs to save space, as these mats fold up effortlessly.
They can also double as an exercise mat for older kids (or yourself!). They are the perfect firmness, making them safe for nap time- and yet soft enough for playtime.
While you cannot purchase in different patterns- they are available in a small variety of pastel colors.
8. Famokids Baby Play Mat
Famokids play mats offer a stylish design and plenty of features that you will love. So long to the brightly colored foam mats that are uncoordinated and mismatched in your home.
These offer a seamless rug like design with plenty of practical features such as a waterproof, easy to clean surface. This mat can also easily be used for yoga or exercise and are a lower price than the others.
9. MQIAOHAM Baby Puzzle Mat
This is an affordable and safe foam mat made from soft, safe, durable foam. This is a perfect mat for floor time with your baby, and is available in different sizes and colors, but I personally like the black and white for neutral colors.
This crawling mat provides a safe place for your little one to practice crawling (and walking) when the time comes!
10. Regalo Sensory & Learning Play Mat
The Regalo play mat is a great option for anyone looking to get some learning out of their choice. The design includes raised symbols including letters and numbers for learning which is fantastic as your child grows.
These mats are reversible, waterproof, and can be used both indoor and outdoor.
11. SUPERJARE 36 Pieces Baby Play Mat
This is a large and well cushioned crawling mat. This play mat is more than safe enough for slips and falls. It is high quality and easy to wipe. You can stimulate your child’s curiosity and promote imagination as it is equipped with several different patterns of animals and shapes.
12. Foldable Baby Play Mat
This baby crawling mat is reversible and has one side of a cute bear and the other side as a little fox. Babies will be uniquely attracted to the design. It is easy to wipe up, and features a non-slip surface that ensures toddlers will not fall easily. It is also foldable, and easy to store when not in use.
How to Clean Your Baby Floor Mat
Most baby crawling mats can be cleaned with soap and water if they are foam. Be sure to read the directions on your individual play mats to ensure that you’re using the correct cleaning agent on them.
Baby play mats are the perfect option for giving your baby tummy time, and for a safe space for a play area as your baby transitions into toddler hood. Play mats are designed for your precious baby to be laying, crawling, running, walking and playing.
Featuring unique qualities such as non-slip surfaces. No matter what you are looking for there is a play mat out there for you. What are you waiting for- choose your ideal play mat today, and start your tummy time adventure!