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What are the Different Types of Pool Toys?

By Deborah Ng
Updated May 17, 2024
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Anyone who owns a pool knows it's not enough to fill it up with water and jump in. Yes, swimming and splashing are enjoyable activities, but the backyard swimming experience is made more pleasurable with the addition of pool toys. While this may seem like kids stuff, you can be assured that pool toys are enjoyable for people of all ages and a must for any family who enjoys backyard water sports.

Common pool toys include inflatable floats, loungers and rings. These turn pool time into a more relaxing experience. Indeed, there's nothing like floating on air and water to forget about the world around you. These pool toys come in many shapes and sizes. Some are flat and shaped like a raft while others look like a big comfy chair. Inflatable rings are helpful for keeping children afloat but should never be used as a life saving device. In fact, very young children would be better off wearing a life vest to keep above water than using a pool toy.

Keep in mind when purchasing an inflatable pool toy that one usually gets what one pays for. Inflatable pool toys are always in danger of losing air. Those who possess many inflatable pool toys would be well advised to keep a patch kit handy just in case. Noodles -- long, thin, colored pieces of Styrofoam -- will not only keep you above water, but won't lose any air. You can float on Noodles, but you can't lie out on them like inflatable loungers.

For those who don't see the swimming pool as a lazy, relaxing experience, there are also plenty of activities to keep busy in the water. The inflatable beach ball has always been a favorite among pool toys. This lightweight oldie but goodie is a must for volleying and indulging in a game of water dodgeball. It gets better, though. Now, floating volleyball and basketball sets are also available for the pool! These pool toys are essential for neighborhood pool parties.

The fun doesn't stop with volleyball and basketball, however. Other great pool toys geared towards keeping active include table tennis, golf, water polo and even tic-tac-toe. The bases float, making games more challenging and more fun.

Water sprayers, such as the famed Super Soaker, are fun in and out of the pool, while diving toys, such as small foam rockets, plastic rings and even small bean bags, will keep kids busy for hours.

When it comes to pool toys, the possibilities are endless. From floating to shooting hoops, there's something for everyone.

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Discussion Comments
By Sporkasia — On Aug 22, 2014

Use common sense, and do as the article mentions and have young kids wear life jackets. When you do this your kids will be as safe as they can be in the pool. Bad judgment is much more dangerous than the swimming pool toys.

By Feryll — On Aug 21, 2014

@Animandel - This is easy for me to say since I don't have any children, but I think people sometimes goes overboard with their worries about kids and water. Like you said, there are dangers associated with some pool rafts and toys, but this is true of all toys, whether or not they are water toys.

I practically lived in the pool and ocean when I was growing up and I received more injuries playing out of water than I did playing in it. I played with beach balls, pool floats and other swimming pool toys and I can't remember ever getting so much as a scratch because of playing with them.

By Animandel — On Aug 21, 2014

Parents really need to be careful about the pool toys they buy for their kids. We all know that not every product in the stores does what it is advertised to do, and some of the products are dangerous. How many times have you purchased something and discovered that it didn't do what it was designed to do, or that the product was defective? The same thing can be said for some pool toys.

There are some floating toys, such as the inflatable houses and other pool floats, that can actually trap a kid inside and then start to deflate. When the float starts to lose air, if the child gets his or her arms or legs trapped then you are looking at a dangerous situation.

Parents need to take these dangers into consideration before buying swimming pool toys, and read all of the reviews and instructions on a particular toy before turning a child loose with it.

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