So, you’re thinking about purchasing a climbing triangle for your child. But before you click “add to cart,” you want to make sure you know which option will work best for your family.
There are two main choices of Pikler climbing triangles: foldable or classic. They each offer great opportunities for your child to climb and explore, but there are some differences you should consider.
Why get a climbing triangle?
The idea for the climbing triangle, also referred to as a Pikler Triangle, came from Emmi Pikler and her studies of children in the 1930s. Pikler believed that babies and children should have total freedom of movement, meaning they can explore their space and experiment with movement without any adult interference.
The climbing triangle provides children with an opportunity to explore how their bodies work.
Pikler’s idea was that babies and toddlers could access the climbing triangle on their own. A baby might play under it or use it to pull up to standing. Eventually, she progresses to climbing the rungs and experimenting with how to go up and down.
The Pikler triangle can be used from 6 months all the way up to 5 years. For older children you can add accessories like a ramp/slide and a rock climbing wall for extra fun and challenge.
Classic climbing triangle: pros and cons
The Classic Climbing Triangle is a sturdy climbing triangle that stays assembled at all times. It has a solid piece of wood along the bottom edge, so it truly forms a triangle.
It’s great if:
- You want to keep it out all the time
- You have a big space to keep it in, like a separate playroom
- You want the most traditional triangle with no extra frills
The biggest downside of this option is that it’s not very easy to store. You need to have a place to keep it in its full shape all the time.
Foldable climbing triangle: pros and cons
The foldable Climbing Triangle has all the great features of the classic, plus it can be folded for easy storage. The shape is more like an upside down V since it doesn’t have the bottom piece of wood like the classic does.
It’s great if:
- You have a small space
- You want to put it away after each use
- You plan to store it for more kids down the road
- You plan to travel with it at any point
Because it folds, you need to make sure this triangle is all the way open before allowing a child to play on it. You don’t want it to close as they climb! It is slightly less stable than the classic, but still certainly sturdy enough for years of use.