You’ve most likely seen the two most popular floor seats: the Bumbo and the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up. How do these two floor seats compare and how do you choose between them? This blog post will go over each floor seat in-depth and compare them. This way, you can choose the best floor seat for your family!
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What is a Floor Seat?
Before we compare the Bumbo and Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up, let’s go over what a floor seat is and if you need one for your baby. A floor seat allows your baby to experience the world from a different perspective.
Up until now, your little one has probably played in someone’s arms or laps, on their tummy, or on their back. Using a floor seat will prop your baby up into a sitting position, which is a new and exciting view! This encourages the use of neck and back muscles as they turn their head from side to side, taking in the excitement around them!
What is the appropriate age for a floor seat?
The best age for a floor seat is whenever a baby has good head control! This can be around 3 or 4 months. Always check with your pediatrician if you have any concerns about your baby meeting certain milestones.
The maximum weight for the Bumbo is 22 pounds and 25 pounds for the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up. You will not need to worry about these weight limits for long as your baby will too mobile to sit still in a few months.
Are floor seats necessary?
The short answer is no. Most child development experts recommend only using floor seats in moderation. This is ~30 minutes at a time. Relying on them can delay your baby’s progression to sitting independently. In other words, floor seats do not truly help your baby learn to sit up.
For that reason, floor seats are not necessities. But they are nice to have for convenience for parents and fun for your little one. They can be useful for moms or dads to take a quick shower, do some cleaning, or cook dinner.
A floor seat is not meant to replace tummy time. Relying on them too much can delay a baby’s progression to sitting independently.
Bumbo and Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up Comparison
There are many floor seats on the market, but the two most popular are the Bumbo Seat and the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up. Let’s compare and see which one proves to be the winner.
Design and Function
The Bumbo Seat, or Bumbo, is made out of sturdy foam and is available in many bright colors. It has a “scooped out” seat with leg holes and a three-point harness. The seat itself is elevated from the floor and has a wide base for stability. The material is easy to clean and the Bumbo is easy to store and transport.
However, due to the design of the Bumbo, it can be harmful to baby’s posture and development. Because of the deep, “scooped out” seat and leg holes, the Bumbo locks baby into place. It does not allow the baby to move its lower extremities. This puts the pelvis and hips in a poor position, resulting in a rounded back and squishing of the back of the neck. This “locked” position is not ideal. It prevents baby from actively using the muscles needed to develop sitting skills. Finally, the locked legs are at a higher position compared to their pelvis.
Another issue with the Bumbo is that the leg holes are made more for babies with slender or skinny thighs. Parents with chunkier babies have anecdotally complained that the Bumbo is a tight and uncomfortable fit.
The Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up has a soft seat pad made of machine-washable fabric. It is available in many colors and designs. This seat has a wide base that helps keep baby well-supported. The Sit-Me-Up’s design allows it to fold flat for easy storing and transport. But it does have a much bigger footprint than the Bumbo when in use.
The Sit-Me-Up is not as restrictive as the Bumbo. Your baby will have free movement of their legs and trunk. This is vital for the development of sitting and walking muscles. The soft seat is designed for the natural shape of baby’s body. It also sits their bottom close to the floor so their legs are supported by the ground. Also, the Sit-Me-Up supports the baby’s shoulders and back with a higher back than the Bumbo. Finally, the leg holes of the Sit-Me-Up are larger than the Bumbo, so it is a good fit for those chunkier babies.
Design and Function Winner: Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up
The Bumbo is the clear winner when it comes to accessories, as there are so many to choose from. Options include a floor seat tray, a seat cover, and many different types of toys. While the tray is an option for the Bumbo, there are some concerns with feeding a baby in the Bumbo. This is due to the posture concerns listed in the above section. Putting a baby in an unnatural sitting position can increase the risk of choking.
For our family, we decided to do baby led weaning, where sitting with the family is an important aspect. Thus, Remy has a high chair at our dining room table where he has good eye contact with the rest of the family.
In contrast, the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up comes with two linkable toys, such as a rattle and a teether. Some models also have little squeakers at the bottom of the pad. It’s a cute way to teach baby about cause and effect while your baby kicks. Other models come with a removable snack tray.
Accessories Winner: Bumbo
The price of the Bumbo can range from $50-60, with the price of the accessories ranging from $12-$35. The Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up is more economical at ~$50. This price includes the linkable toys and removable snack tray.
It is also important to take into account how long you may be able to use the floor seat and if it’s worth the cost. For the Bumbo and its small leg holes, your baby may not be able to “grow” into this seat due to its size restrictions.
Price Winner: Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up
And there you have it! A comparison of the two most popular floor seats: the Bumbo and the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up. Due to the design and price, the clear winner is the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up and what we have in our household.
Alternative Floor Seats
The floor seat market is mostly dominated by the Bumbo and the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up. But there are other floor seats that you can consider:
Things to Keep in Mind for Floor Seat Use
Once you choose a floor seat for your little one, here are some things to keep in mind with your new accessory!
Always use under adult supervision
The floor seat should be used with adult supervision. Never leave the baby alone in the floor seat.
Aim for less than 30 minutes of daily use
It is important to remember that floor seats are to be used sparingly – at most 30 minutes at a time and on the floor. It’s perfect to set the baby down when you have to cook dinner, take a quick shower (keep the shower curtain open so you can see the baby!), or to clean up around the house.
Tummy time is best
Remember that relying on a floor seat too much can hinder your baby’s ability to sit up independently. The best thing that will help baby develop the muscles and dexterity needed to sit up is tummy time!
After researching the Bumbo, our family went with the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up. We loved having the option of setting the baby down for a quick minute if needed. But like mentioned before, it wasn’t a true necessity and we could’ve easily done without it. I would recommend for new moms to research floor seats. Then categorize the floor seat as a “would be nice” item on their registry.
Do you have a floor seat for your growing baby? If so, which kind do you have? Do you think it’s a necessity? I would love to hear your thoughts!