Let me start by saying: I am not in anyway being compensated for this review. Otteroo is not paying me to endorse their product. I’m not earning any affiliate sales on the Otteroo. I am simply overjoyed with this product, and I fully believe that every baby in the world deserves to try the Otteroo. And every parent deserves to see the joy on their baby’s face when they realize they have freedom of movement for the very first time.
At about 6 months into my pregnancy, I became aware of the Otteroo. Water skills are incredibly important, and as a Coast Guard wife, I knew that getting M off on the right foot with swimming was going to be important for our family. I wanted him to feel comfortable in the water, and know that water can be a fun and safe place to be.
If you haven’t heard of the Otteroo, you can check out the website here. It’s a circular inflatable ring that clips securely around an infant’s neck. It’s made from toxin-free plastic sheets that measure at 0.35mm thick, and can be run over by an SUV without rupturing. You can use it in your bathtub at home, or in a swimming pool. Important: the Otteroo is not a Coast Guard approved flotation device. It’s a device intended for building water skills under adult supervision. I really can’t stress this enough: Use of the Otteroo should ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS be supervised by a responsible adult.
The Otteroo allows infants 8+ weeks old freedom of movement in the water, and it’s the cutest damn thing you’ve ever seen. We first used the Otteroo in our bathtub at home. Even though I was excited, I was also nervous to give it a try. Would M like it? Would this be a good investment in building his water skills? Or would this be a big, fat flop like the swing we bought for him?
I ran the bathwater, and clipped the Otteroo around M’s neck. I stepped into the tub, and gently lowered him into the water. His reaction? It went something like this: confusion, intrigue, pure joy.
See for yourself. Pics are a little blurry, but it’s because we were laughing at how adorable he was when he was swimming.
I loved watching him kick and splash, and twirl and spin and go from one end of the tub to the other. Seeing his cute little butt and frog legs swim through the water fills my heart with joy. He absolutely loves his Otteroo, and I love that he’s learning to love the water.
I also love that by using the Otteroo he’s building core strength and developing hand eye coordination. It’s also a huge plus that kicking and splashing in the tub every night is a phenomenal workout for him, which means he will sleep for a solid 4-5 hours before he wakes up to nurse.
I’ve also used the Otteroo for M when he’s having a hard time and is almost inconsolable. Just run fill the tub and let babe swim for a bit. My mom said it best when she saw how happy he was in the water: “After two months out in the world, that must feel like coming home.” And I think that’s true. After all, he spend 41 weeks in warm, gooey amniotic fluid, and hasn’t had a chance to get back to that by any means. Floating in a warm bath calms him and gives him a sense of peace after a period of fussiness.
The only downside to the Otteroo that I have found is that it has made “normal” baths in his infant bathtub completely obsolete. I tried to give him a bath in his infant tub once after a few baths with his Otteroo…. he was pissed. He was in water, but he couldn’t splash and kick and spin. “What gives Mom? Why would you even put me in here?!” He was so frustrated! It made for a very cranky 15 minutes after his bath, but he eventually settled down and forgave me (I think?).
We’ve also used the Otteroo when we went on vacation to Sanibel Island, FL. The condo we stayed at had a heated pool, and it was perfect for Otteroo time. M was a huge hit poolside. He’s already freaking adorable, but put him in his Otteroo for the whole pool to see? The pool goers couldn’t get enough of him. I can’t tell you how many times other parents said they wished they had an Otteroo when their kids were little. It was probably like 4 or 5 times that I heard it. We only spent about 10-15 minutes in the pool each time, but that was 10-15 minutes of pool time we wouldn’t have had without the Otteroo.
So there you have it folks. My completely unbiased review of the Otteroo. Easily my favorite piece of baby gear we’ve purchased, and I highly recommend it for everyone with baby who is 8 weeks old or more. You won’t regret it.
How did you introduce your little one to water?