Some of our very favorite gifts for our active kids are the cool outdoor toys that get them up and moving all year round. And, wow, we have found a bunch of great outdoor toys for kids of every age at Fat Brain Toys, our fantastic sponsor for this second post in our mini holiday toy gift guide series.
From bikes to scooters to toys and games that get you off the couch, we love that Fat Brains Toys is a one-stop shop for a ton of the best outdoor toys from so many of the brands we love and trust — as well as some that are new to us too. So to keep you from having to comb through more than 7,500 toys on their site (which, whoa!) we’ve done the work for you, picking out some of our very favorite gift ideas for the kids on your list.
Whether you want to surprise your child with a cool new set of wheels under the tree, or need a great gift to get all the cousins playing together over the holidays, or you just want to get your kids moving when it’s too cold to go outside, we hope our picks can help!
Best outdoor toys for 12 months-3 years:
They’ll be zooming around the room before you finish picking up the wrapping paper if they find the adorable Tiny Rider from Schylling with their name on the tag. Double front wheels help new walkers maintain their stability as they scoot along. And, the rubber wheels not only grip any surface, they also make for a great indoor or outdoor ride-on toy–a good thing since we know that many kids won’t want to wait until the snow to melt to start riding.
Best outdoor toys for kids 18 months-5 years:
Strider Balance Bikes
If your kids are ready for two wheels, we love Strider Balance Bikes which are so well made, yet lightweight enough for young kids to easily maneuver on their own. With a durable steel frame and tires that can take this bike from the sidewalk to the bike trail, you can even replace the seat post to accommodate a growing-up child.
Another option for kids around the same age who aren’t quite ready a traditional bike are the popular, Ybikes which are built with safety features parents love like a big front wheel for a larger turning radius, and a covered back wheel to protect those little feet. Plus they can take a pretty good beating which is essential when you’ve got little kids on board, and we love all the bright cheerful colors. The manufacturer age reco is 2 years, but we think you could easily go a little younger with parental supervision.
Related: 14 of the best educational toys for kids of every age
Best outdoor toys for kids 3 and up:
Hape Target Toss Up
Not every outdoor toy for kids has to be one you ride on! Get a some friendly, active competition going on in your house or backyard with this wooden Target Toss Up toy made by Hape. Use three soft bean bags to try to to add up the most point, or just see how many times you can hit the target at all. It’s also a great way for older kids to practice their addition skills as they play.
This kid-powered Plasma Car is one of our all time favorite ride-on toys for kids with energy to burn, and so cool that you may find yourself taking it for a spin around the block yourself. (We have. Just don’t ask to see the photos!) All you do is move the handle back and forth to get it going and you’re off. If you really want to sound smart, let the kids know that it’s centrifugal force and gravity that keep it propelling forward. Though it’s likely that all they’ll care about is how much fun they are having.
Sky Saucer Swing
If your swing set needs an update as your kids grow, or if you’ve got a sturdy branch that looks naked and lonely, check out the wide, round Sky Saucer. Not your grandma’s backyard swing, the Sky Saucer is large enough to support two kids who want to spin or swing, or one adult deserves a turn too.
Best active toy for kids 4 and up:
Kids who can’t stop bouncing around the house may just need to start bouncing on the Hopper Ball, a toy from our youth that we remember so fondly. It’s such a simple, fun toy, amazing at helping kids burn off all that extra steam they may build up being stuck indoors. And since it holds up to 180 pounds, some parents can even relive their youth by giving the Hopper Ball a try too.
This is such a cool looking low-rider outdoor toy for kids or teens under 150 pounds. We love how the Ezy Roller moves with human power, not motors — you alternately press the foot pedals. It’s for riding in the driveway or even taking for a spin indoors (if you have the space) when the weather doesn’t cooperate. This is such a cool toy, guaranteed the whole neighborhood will be showing up to give it a whirl.
Best active toys for kids 5 and up:
Our own kids have been known to clomp around the house with their Stepper toys, a modern take on the Romper Stompers of our youth. We love that this toy is made right here in the USA and comes in six different colors, so you can pick your child’s favorite. At only 5″ tall, the Stepper is a great way for kids up to about age 10 to practice their balance and coordination, but it’s not so high to be too scary for younger kids to try.
Best outdoor toys for kids 5 and up:
Foam Maverick Pogo Stick
Instead of bouncing off the walls, we love giving our kids a different way to jump around: With the Foam Maverick Pogo Stick. For kids between 40-80 pounds, this classic children’s toy has some very new upgrades like comfy handle grips and non-slip foot pads so kids can boing-boing-boing to their heart’s content.
Your older kids will eagerly await the next snowstorm if they’ve got a foldable Ski Skooter to try out on their favorite slope. This cool outdoor toy for kids is nice and lightweight so it isn’t hard to carry up the hill (or ahem, so parents don’t have to carry it up the hill), and then kids can “scooter” down to the bottom while using the sturdy handle for balance. If you don’t see snow in your part of the country, the Ski Skooter is also designed to slide on grass or even sand dunes! Though we imagine that tumbles can be a lot messier. Great for kids about 5-15. (Update: The Ski Skooter now available at Hearthsong)
Best outdoor toys for kids 8 and up:
Dueling Stomp Rocket
What could be more fun than shooting a rocket as high as it can go? Make that two rockets! Yes, the Dueling Stomp Rocket toy will have kids lining up to challenge each other to a rocket-stomping contest. Aim away from the roof and get ready to referee those “whose went higher?” disputes.
Goodminton Racket Game
No net? No problem when you’ve got the easier-to-hit Goodminton game which is a clever twist on Badminton. (Get it?) Start with the larger and slower birdies until you all get the hang of hitting them back and forth, then speed things up by swapping in the smaller birdies. Love how easy this is to take to the park or a friend’s house and get a game going without needing to spend any time setting up. Plus, this is a fun game for parents to play along with too, if you want a more active family game night.
Slackline Night Riderz Zipline
You’ll hear screams of “wheeeeeeeeee” with one of Slackline’s well-made ziplines installed in your backyard, which we’ve recommended as a top toy pick in the past. Be sure to grab their Night Riderz Zipline kit and your fun toy will look even cooler. Super bright LED lights in the seat show up in the daylight and get really brilliant at night. Just prepare for extra snacks for all the neighborhood kids who will be lined up to take turns.
Thank you to our fantastic Holiday Toy Gift Guide sponsor, Fat Brain Toys, for making it easier to find the best outdoor toys for kids. They’ve got 7500 fantastic, well-curated options including lots made right in the USA.
Cool Mom Picks readers can save 10% at Fat Brain Toys by entering discount code ND-5626 at checkout. Offer expires 12/15/2015.
EXTRA-COOL: WIN IT!
Enter for a chance to win Fat Brain Toys’ $300 Ultimate Holiday Giveaway. Every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday from now through 12/22/15, Fat Brain toys will give away a $300 shopping spree to one lucky winner. That’s means there will be a whole lot of winners! Visit the site to register and for full details and official rules. No purchase necessary. One entry per household per day. 19+ to enter. Void where prohibited.
To keep up with all their new product offerings this holiday season, follow them at Fat Brain Toys on Facebook.