Which balance beam for children is the best?
A balance beam is a great fun way for kids to improve their coordination, whether it’s for everyday balance or if they’re taking their first steps towards gymnastics competitions. However, not all balance beams are suitable for all children. For example, a gymnastics hopeful should have a competition-ready bar that younger kids might struggle on.
The best balance beam for children is the Milliard Adjustable Balance Beam. Its lowest setting is perfect for all ages and it’s easy to raise the bar later.
What to know before buying a children’s balance beam
balance beams for children, always start resting on the ground, usually with beam heights of no more than 4 inches. Once your child has grown and improved their skills, you may want to consider a beam that is free standing and 6 to 12 inches off the ground. Older children with lots of experience on a balance beam can use beams as high as 24 inches. Anything above this is used for competitions between teenagers and more experienced adults.
Balance beams for children are usually available in lengths of 4, 6 or 8 feet. Save the 4 or 6 foot beams for occasional use by younger kids and especially for home use. 8-foot-long beams are best suited for children starting out in gymnastics; just make sure you have enough space.
For reference, the official competition balance beams are 16 feet long.
Balance beams for children are available in a wide range of colors. Purple, beige and blue are some of the most common for standard beams, while plastic beams often come in a rainbow of bright colors. It shouldn’t be hard to find one that matches your child’s favorite color.
What to Look for in a Quality Balance Beam for Kids
The base material of a balance beam affects the level of gymnastics your child can perform.
- Plastic is common in balance beams for those who have only recently learned to walk. It is generally not strong enough to support more than 100 pounds. Many plastic beams come in pieces rather than whole, so you can tailor the challenge to the child or create funky shapes and paths to keep them entertained.
- Mousse is common for beginner gymnastics. It is just strong enough to give a little flexibility, but soft enough not to hurt the child in the event of a fall. It also tends to cost less than wood or metal.
- Wood and metal are best for kids who are ready to step up their game. They offer the best support and durability, but also include a thin layer of foam for a bit of protection.
Kids grow fast, which is why the best balance beams for kids allow you to adjust their height. Some may only have one or two settings above floor height while others have several.
How much you can expect to spend on a balance beam for kids
They can cost as little as $30 or as high as $200 and more. Small basic beams rarely cost more than $75, while the medium beam costs between $150 and $200. Serious gymnastic beams for kids usually start around $200.
Balance beam for kids FAQ
What exactly does a children’s balance beam improve?
A. It improves your child’s coordination and core strength, which improves their balance.
Why do most balance beams use suede coverings?
A. Suede, whether natural or synthetic, is usually thick and provides extra grip for a gymnast. It’s also more durable.
How old should my child be before starting “professional” gymnastics?
A. Every child is different. One may have a natural aptitude and be ready by age 4 or 5, while another child may need more time to mature and master the basics. Either way, there are plenty of classes available for kids of all ages that teach these basics as long as they can walk comfortably. Remember to consider your child’s interests and abilities when registering.
What is the best balance beam to buy for children?
Top balance beam for kids
What do you want to know: The adjustable height allows it to grow according to your child’s skills and age.
What you will love: It measures 8 x 4 inches with five height settings between 7 and 24 inches. The legs are made of steel for durability and have non-slip feet to keep them stable. The padded suede beam with a wood core is competition grade.
What you should consider: A few consumers reported that the 24-inch height adjustment was a bit wonky. Others reported that the suede was a bit slippery.
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Top balance beam for kids for the money
What do you want to know: This balance beam is ideal for teaching the youngest a little balance.
What you will love: It is made up of six connected “stepping stones” that measure 21 by 6 by 4 inches. They’re lightweight with a rubberized base, and the whole stretch can be made easier or harder by moving the logs closer together or farther apart.
What you should consider: Only six springboards are included. You will have to buy more if you want a longer swing arm.
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Worth checking out
What do you want to know: These pieces allow you to create your own balance beam shapes.
What you will love: The set includes eight straight pieces, 18 curves and a cross section. Each piece is connectable so you can create long winding wave beams, a simple straight line, circles, and a figure 8. Pieces can hold up to 110 pounds.
What you should consider: Putting all the parts together and taking them apart every time can be a hassle. Parts take up a large amount of storage space.
Or buy: Sold by Amazon
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Jordan C. Woika written for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their buying decisions, saving them time and money.
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