- Rocking chairs may seem old-fashioned, but they are extremely comfortable.
- If you’re looking for a great rocking chair, we like the Baby Relax Mikayla Swivel Gliding Recliner.
- Thanks to its reclining capabilities and 360-degree swivel action, we think it suits most people.
Often used by new parents, gliders and rocking chairs are useful additions to a nursery. But almost anyone can enjoy a rocking chair, and there are many modern styles to choose from these days.
Rocking chairs are even having a resurgence these days. You don’t have to be a baby to enjoy the gentle and calming rocking sensation. You can enjoy your new rocker in cushioned comfort, whether you’re in the baby’s nursery, on the porch, or in a living room watching TV.
We’ve checked all the reviews and looked over the feature sets of every rocking chair in our guide to find only the best ones. Whether you’re a new parent, a grandparent, or just someone who loves rocking chairs, we have a pick for you here.
Here are the best gliders and rocking chairs in 2021
- Best gliding chair overall: Baby Relax Mikayla Swivel Gliding Recliner
- Best glider for nursing babies: Dutailier Nursing Grand Modern Glider Chair
- Best traditional rocking chair: Coaster Milton Indoor Rocking Chair
- Best outdoor rocking chair: Outdoor Interiors Resin Wicker and Eucalyptus Rocking Chair
No matter what style of rocking chair you prefer, the versatile Baby Relax Mikayla Swivel Gliding Recliner fulfills your needs, with a glider, recliner, and swivel chair all wrapped into one.
Pros: Versatile rocking chair offering glider and swivel features inside a recliner, soft and comfortable cushioning, high back is good for tall people, nice looking design, easy to clean microfiber fabric
Cons: May squeak a little
The Baby Relax Mikayla Swivel Gliding Recliner combines many of the best features in modern rocking chairs, all in one comfortable package.
It’s able to serve as a glider, a recliner, and a swivel chair. Because of its high-quality construction, all of the chair’s movements are extremely smooth and controlled, which is especially important for nursing mothers.
A padded leg rest invites you to put your feet up while you’re using the Mikayla as a recliner, and the button tufting on the backrest acts as both a generous cushion and a fun design detail.
Speaking of design, it’s also nice that the chair comes in several different colors and fabrics. You can choose between beige linen, gray linen, gray microfiber, and mocha microfiber. Note that the microfiber fabrics will be the easiest to clean.
The best glider for nursing babies
If you’re looking for a rocking chair specifically for nursing a baby — and you don’t mind spending a little extra — the Dutailier Nursing Grand Modern Glider Chair offers several desirable features.
Pros: High construction quality, easy to assemble, built-in nursing pillows set this rocking chair apart, very comfortable cushions, position of glider can be locked in place during feeding, also available with an ottoman
Cons: Narrow (18.75″ wide)
The Dutailier Nursing Grand Modern Glider provides high-quality fabric, a sturdy build, and generous cushioning.
It also includes built-in feeding pillows that make this rocking chair even more appealing to nursing parents. The pillows tuck into the back cushion when not in use. You’ll just pull the pillows out of place when you need to position them.
It also includes a fully adjustable backrest with extra seating space that’s perfect for sitting comfortably with your baby. You can lock the glider into place, ensuring you remain in just the right position without movement while feeding your baby. It’s also available with an ottoman.
The best traditional rocking chair
If stylish and traditional is your taste in furniture, it doesn’t get much more traditional than the all-wood Coaster Milton Indoor Rocking Chair.
Pros: Beautiful looking traditional rocking chair, all wood construction, assembly takes a short amount of time, lightweight chair is easy to move around, easy to clean the chair
Cons: Customers report some problems with customer service, no included cushions
Some items are just better when you stick to the original design. If that’s your feeling regarding rocking chairs, the Coaster Milton Indoor Rocking Chair is the way to go.
The Coaster rocking chair has the two arc rockers, the four spindle legs attaching the chair to the rockers, the curved arms, and the all-wood design that represents the traditional look of a rocking chair. This model has no cushions on it, but you can easily add tie-on cushions to the seat and back for a bit of comfort.
This chair also weighs less than 20 pounds, making it easy to move around.
The best outdoor rocking chair
The Outdoor Interiors Resin Wicker and Eucalyptus Rocking Chair stands up to almost any kind of weather, but it will continue to look great with just a little bit of maintenance.
Pros: Very durable outdoor rocking chair, materials look nice, chair is comfortable for sitting for long periods, good build quality, wood only requires occasional maintenance care
Cons: Assembly can be tricky
The Outdoor Interiors Resin Wicker and Eucalyptus Rocking Chair provides the right mix of stylish construction and weatherproof materials, making it a great option for using on an outdoor patio.
It has a wooden frame and a wicker seat for a classic look. The materials are fairly durable and meant to tough out the weather on your patio. You may want to occasionally apply linseed oil to keep the wood in top condition.
You will have to pay a bit more than average for this outdoor rocking chair, but it has plenty of durability to make it worth the extra cost, thanks to its combination of wicker and eucalyptus.
A common complaint in online reviews is the chair’s tricky assembly process, as lining up the parts while tightening them is difficult for one person alone. However, once it’s made, it’s a great chair.
What to consider when buying a rocking chair
Rocking chairs and gliders are available in many shapes, designs, styles, and sizes. All of them allow you to create a gentle rocking motion, but they go about the process in slightly different ways.
- Fabric: If you’re often rocking your baby in the chair, the chair is going to become soiled at some point. It’s inevitable. So pick a type of chair and fabric that’s easy to clean.
- Glider or platform: A glider rocking chair moves forward and backward, leaving the base in a stable position, rather than having the entire chair move in an arc like a traditional rocking chair. The movement of a glider is often smoother than a rocking chair, which is good for moms and babies. Gliders and platform rockers operate in a similar manner.
- Locking mechanism: Some rocking chairs can be locked in place, which makes it easier for you to stand up while holding a baby.
- Ottoman: Many rocking chairs come with an ottoman, which allows you to put your feet up when you don’t want to rock. Some ottomans that ship with glider rocking chairs also move in the same manner as the glider, allowing for a smooth motion.
- Outdoor: Some rocking chairs are made for indoor use, while others are made for outdoor use. If you plan to leave your rocking chair exposed to the weather, be sure to pick a chair rated for outdoor use.
- Padding: A rocking chair may provide padding to support your back, neck, and arms. You may be spending a few hours in the chair to comfort a sick baby, so padding is important. Even an all-wood rocking chair can be made more comfortable with removable padding that ties onto the chair.
- Recliner: Some rockers have a reclining feature, which allows you to lock the rocking chair in place and put your feet up on a footrest.
- Swivel: Some rocking chairs have a circular base, which allows you to spin the chair 360 degrees in addition to rocking in it. This is a great feature for being able to swing around and see other children playing in the room while sitting with a baby.
Check out our other guides to baby essentials