How Do Baby Swings Work? Everything to Know About Baby Swings

How Do Baby Swings Work? Everything to Know About Baby Swings

Deciding on the most useful baby gear to buy can be challenging, especially if you’re a new parent. But a baby swing is an absolute must. So how do baby swings work?

Nowadays, manufacturers design many baby products with the parent in mind. These products aim at making life easier for parents while entertaining their babies.

Among the most popular baby products are baby swings. If you find yourself wondering, ‘How do baby swings work?’, you’re in the right place.

In this article, we’ll help you understand everything about baby swings.

Let’s dive in!

Why Are Baby Swings Popular?

Baby swings are designed to imitate the gentle arm movement that parents make when rocking their baby to sleep. That’s mainly why baby swings surpass other gear in popularity and functionality. It’s also a key insight into how baby swings work.

With a baby swing, you’ll have more time available to accomplish other tasks or to rest your arms for a while. In the meantime, your little one would be happy and calm.

As more people turn to baby swings, manufacturers have been adding more features to them.

Some baby swings include gliding functions, bouncers, and hanging toys along with swinging. The swinging motion also comes at different speeds since it operates on power.

How Do Baby Swings Work?

The back-and-forth movement creates a soothing effect on the baby. Therefore, a good baby swing should make this motion as smooth and natural as possible.

Because baby swings are used to put babies to sleep or calm them down, they’re likely to spend a long time in them. That’s why it’s essential to understand how they work.

Swinging Mechanism

Most Baby swings allow the chair to swing, whether from side to side or from front to back. They usually work using batteries. Most swings now also include an AC adapter so you can plug it in.

You’ll find two buttons or a knob to control the swing’s speed.  Typically, the baby swing will turn off automatically. However, you can still switch them off whenever you want.

Swing Accessories

Most manufacturers now include different accessories to make the swing as comfortable and entertaining as possible. Usually, most swings feature hanging soft toys to entertain the baby. Some swings even come with motor-based toys that move.

Some baby swings also come with sound functions to make the experience more soothing.

The sound can be music or white noise. While some models come with built-in melodies, others allow you to play music from an embedded mp3 music player.

The sound option comes with volume controllers. Some models also come with a timer. You set the timer, and the music will turn off on its own.

These options can help babies stay distracted when they aren’t asleep. All their senses are being entertained. It’s a great way to both calm your baby down and keep them from crying.

Types of Swings

Just like all products, baby swings come in various types to suit different needs. Portable baby swings, for instance, are a fantastic option to move the baby around with you. It’s also a better option for those who live in a multi-level home.

If you don’t intend to move the swing from one room to another, you can opt for a fixed baby swing.

Also, not all baby swings offer the plug-in option as an alternative to the batteries. Some only have batteries and vice versa. It’s essential to decide which of these two options is more suitable for your needs.

The Benefits vs. Downsides of Using a Baby Swing

Some parents are pro-baby swings, while others prefer not to use it. Let’s explore both sides of the argument. While baby swings may give you extra time to do other things, there are some precautions you should take when using a baby swing.

Benefits of Using Baby Swings

Baby swings provide multiple benefits in the early stage of your baby.

Help Soothe Babies

When babies are in the womb, they’re used to continuous motion. That explains why they love being carried most of the time when they’re born. Baby swings mimic the movement of swinging parents’ arms. In turn, babies feel comfortable and relaxed.

Allow Parent More Time for Other Tasks

Being a new parent can be very challenging. Babies can be quite demanding, yet you still need to get things done around the house.

Also, if your baby likes to be carried and soothed most of the time, you’ll need to rest your arms every now and then.  A baby swing can help buy you some time.

Instead of carrying your baby, you can put them in the swing while you do the dishes, cook dinner, or peacefully drink your morning coffee!

Downsides of Using Baby Swings

On the other hand, like anything in the world, baby swings can have a few downsides.

May Cause Sleep Association Problems

Many people argue that baby swings will get in the way of your child’s learning process of putting themselves to sleep. When babies get used to sleeping in a swing, they may have difficulty sleeping alone in their crib later on.

Sleep association can be challenging to deal with. If it happens, your baby won’t be able to sleep at night without that swinging motion.

At the end of the day, it’s up to parents to decide whether the benefits are worth the risk of sleep association issues.

Relatively Expensive

Baby swings have more motor-based functions, which contribute to their relatively high price. When compared to basic bouncers, they cost a lot more.

Some people opt for second-hand baby swings to pay a little less. The main issue with second-hand baby gear is safety. You’ll never know if the swing is defective, for instance.

Moreover, baby swings use power to operate, translating to higher electricity bills in the long run.

Baby Swings Are Heavy and Bulky

With all the motor-based functions and the wide seat, baby swings are heavier than other rocking options.

They come in various sizes and can be as heavy as 25 kgs. You’ll have to make sure you have enough space for them at home. They also need more storage space compared to bouncers, for instance.

Safety Tips When Using a Baby Swing

Besides just learning how baby swings work, we wanted to cover some of the safety considerations you’ll need when using a swing. When it comes to your baby, safety is the most important thing to pay attention to. Here are a few tips to bear in mind when using baby swings.

  • Check the baby’s manual for correct installation and operation. If you think the swing might be broken, check out our how to fix a baby swing guide.
  • Ensure that the baby isn’t heavier than the weight limit specified in the instructions.
  • Adjust the chair’s harnesses to fit your infant’s arm size.
  • Secure the baby on the seat with the buckles. Usually, there’s a pad that goes between the baby’s legs to be attached to the buckles.
  • Make sure that the baby can’t easily remove the toys attached.
  • Double-check that the swing’s cradle surface is flat while moving and when it stops.
  • Make sure that babies younger than four months are seated in the most reclined position for safety.
  • Move the baby to a safer place, such as the crib once they’ve fallen asleep.
  • Don’t leave the child in the baby swing for long periods. This can cause your kid’s head to slump forward and may cause breathing difficulty.

Baby Swings vs. Other Baby Gear

The world of baby products is jammed with different gear that all vie for the parent’s attention. They vary in functionality, durability, and prices.

When it comes to putting the baby to sleep, there are many options on the market. The most notable ones are bouncers, rocking bassinets, and baby swings.


Bouncers remain a popular choice for parents. Like baby swings, bouncers imitate the rocking movement. Bouncers can be used from a very young age and are soothing for the baby.

However, it requires that the baby moves himself. In contrast, the swing is powered by batteries or outlets. Bouncers are usually lighter in weight.

The bouncer is positioned closer to the ground so that the baby uses his legs to rock himself. Whereas the swing automatically rocks the baby to sleep.

In general, both the bouncers and swings are designed for the pre-sitting stage. The more reclined the position is, the better for the baby.

Rocking Bassinets

Another famous gear is the rocking bassinet. It also mimics the rocking movement. It’s smaller than the swing in size and doesn’t need power to work.

On the downside, it can only be used until your baby is six months. The rocking bassinet is also less powerful than the swing. This is why many people opt for the latter.


Nothing troubles new parents more than putting their baby to sleep or calming them down. Baby swings are considered the best quick-fix by many parents out there.

Manufacturers have made it even more appealing by adding features to help soothe and distract the baby even more. Baby swings are designed with more options to ensure the parent’s maximum comfort and quick sleep for the child.

However, using a baby swing should come with awareness. This gear should never be considered a sleeping space for the baby; neither should the baby be left in it for too long.

After your baby grows older than 9 to 12 months, you should probably switch to an outdoor swing or a swing hanging from a tree. Babies outgrow traditional swings around that time.