I’ve heard these called Johnny Jump-Ups or bouncers, but whatever you call them, they’re kinda neat. Eli sure loves his, so I’d recommend considering one if you have a child not yet old enough to walk.
Basically, they hook around your door frame above the trim pieces, using the trim to hold a long spring with a seat attached. Baby can move around, even bouncing up and down, while being supported by the seat. I used plastic rings to attach a toy to the seat so Eli has something to play with while he bounces.
My best use for this so far is hanging it in the bathroom doorway so I can get a shower while Eli keeps himself entertained. It’s amazing how peaceful a shower can be! And, he’s building those leg muscles, too.
They’re fairly basic and most don’t have a lot of bells and whistles, but here are a few suggestions for picking one you’ll like…and at a good price.
- Don’t be afraid to buy a used one. Of course, if it’s missing pieces or has been recalled, you wouldn’t want a used one, but these probably don’t get a lot of hard use in an average household so a used one should still be clean and in good repair. Ours cost a few dollars at a church rummage sale, brand new in the box. You could also check Craigslist and resale shops.
- Make sure it fits your door frame well. I’m sure the manufacturer’s instructions will nag you to death with all the safety warnings, but if the jumper doesn’t fit your door frame well, your baby won’t be safe. And, if your door trim is like ours was, it may need some extra reinforcement before it’s sturdy enough to support the baby’s weight.
- If you can, test it. You should test it for safety, of course, but also for ease of use. Ours is a little tough to get Eli in and out, in part because of his thick legs, but also because of how the tray and straps are designed. They may all be difficult, but you might want to practice first if you can.