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Best Rocking Horses
Updated on
January 4, 2024

Best Rocking Horses

By Babylist Team
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Best Rocking Horses

Rocking horses withstand the test of time—and for good reason! These classic toys have been inspiring imaginations for generations. Besides being whimsically fun, they help tots improve gross motor skills, balance and coordination. While your child is busy being a cowkid, they’ll be putting upper body muscles to work and learning new push-pull motions. It’s also a great way to practice balance skills and coordination. Another bonus feature: the gentle rocking motion can be soothing and comforting to kids. Who knew a pretend game of “farmer” could pave the way for naptime?

With so many styles and sizes to choose from, there’s a pony pal for every nursery, playroom or backyard. Be sure to read the age requirements carefully before buying, because while some rocking horses are safe for infants (they usually include a padded seat and security strap), others are designed for older toddlers and preschoolers.

Ready to ride? These are our favorite picks:

Best Classic Rocking Horse

It’s possible that nearly every American grandparent had this traditional rocking horse at some point (and maybe you even rode on it as a kid). Handmade from responsibly harvested solid pine and with a non-toxic teak oil finish, this sturdy rocker will last for generations.

Additional Specs
Child Guidelines Ages 2 yrs+
Dimensions 29’’ x 11.5’’ x 19.5’’

Best Rocking Horse for Toddlers

You can always count on Little Tikes for well-made childhood staples. Their rocking horse is no exception. Light, small and easy on the wallet, this no-frills rocker has smooth corners and edges for an even ride. Great for both indoor and outdoor play, toddlers as young as 12 months will enjoy every minute of improving their balance and coordination. Thanks to the low saddle height, high back and handles, you can rest assured little riders will sit safely and securely. Bonus: its one-piece construction means it comes fully assembled.

Keep in mind, the weight limit is only up to 50 pounds. To get the most bang for your buck, purchase this when your child is little and will have plenty of room to grow.

Additional Specs
Child Guidelines Ages 12 mos–3 yrs; up to 50 lbs
Dimensions 33” x 10” x 17.5”

Best Plush Rocking Horse

This sweet little rocker from Pottery Barn is another good pick for younger kids. Whatever animal you choose (and there are a lot to choose from) it’s soft and snuggly and sits atop a wooden base, which makes for a smooth glide. It’s on the pricier side, but you can also add your child’s name to the wooden frame on this little guy (you can put up to nine characters on the glider base), and that little touch of personalization makes the price point worth it.

Additional Specs
Child Guidelines Ages 12 mos–5 yrs; up to 40 lbs
Dimensions Varies by animal

Best High-Tech Rocking Horse

The tech experts at VTech have brought modern learning to the classic rocking horse with colorful light-up buttons that teach colors and play animal sounds. The built-in motion sensors know when your little one starts rocking and plays energetic music to amp up the fun. And once kiddo is ready to really get a move on, the rocking legs detach and flip around to become wheels, transforming the rocking horse into a mobile riding toy!

Additional Specs
Child Guidelines Ages 1-3 yrs; up to 42 lbs
Dimensions 18.5” x 22” x 13.5”

Best Rocking Horse for a Comfy Ride

This rocking horse looks and sounds like the real deal–from its mane to its mouth bit. Squeeze the ears and it makes realistic galloping sounds as they ride off on an adventure. It also has a plush cushion saddle to keep tiny bottoms from getting sore.

Additional Specs
Child Guidelines Ages 18 mos+; up to 80 lbs
Dimensions 21.75” x 10.25” x 25.5”

The Superstar

So your kiddo wants a pony? Done. The ride of this spring-powered horse is as close to the real thing as you can get without actually investing in a live animal (and be prepared for your kid to have sore legs after their first few wild rodeos). As your child bounces the coiled springs, different sound modes kick in to match the riding speed, producing realistic noises for walking, trotting and galloping. And when the ride is done, use the included carrot to “feed” the horse and hear it make horse-y chewing sounds! Keep in mind: the base is bigger than most rocking horses, so make sure you have ample space.

Additional Specs
Child Guidelines Ages 2-6 yrs; up to 60 lbs
Dimensions 36” x 41” x 21”

The Rocker Alternative

You know what kids love just as much as phones, tablets and TV? A simple stick horse. Let their imagination (and legs!) run wild on this old-fashioned family favorite. Featuring several fun sound effects and a telescoping handle, there will be no shortage of giddy-upping, jumping and laughing around your house. Even better? It doesn’t take up much space among the rest of kiddo’s playthings.

Additional Specs
Child Guidelines Ages 3 yrs+
Dimensions 16” x 8” x 6”

More Rocking Horses We Love

If you’re looking for even more options, here are a few more rocking horses we love.

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