Make your own Pikler triangle

What is a Pikler triangle and what’s so interesting about it? The Pikler triangle is made of wood and is a climbing triangle. It encourages children’s motor development in a fun way. It was the idea of Hungarian paediatrician Emmi Pikler. She put a lot of thought into its clever construction.

The advantage of the Pikler triangle is that most children enjoy it for a long time. It is recommended when children start to crawl, i.e. at around ten months, and to sit up straight. By the age of two, children are able to climb up and over the highest rungs.

The Pikler triangle can also be used as a small play cave. Children simply throw a blanket over it. The space underneath is narrow but comfortable.

What are the differences?

Pikler triangles are available in different sizes. The best models are between 70 and 90 cm. There are also higher models available these days, but height is not a decisive factor for children if they know how to climb the top step. On the other hand, the risk of injury increases if children fall or if they fall from the top of the slide, which can be attached to one of the rungs. Children also like to try something out and go down from the top, upside down. The higher the Pikler triangle, the more dangerous it is. After all, children should be able to conquer it safely on their own.

An important construction feature is whether or not the triangle can be folded up. If you don’t have a big flat, it’s a good idea if it can be stored in a space-saving way.


Before building a climbing triangle, keep the following tips in mind:

  • How high should it be? A total height of around 75 cm is recommended.
  • Does the Pikler triangle have to be fixed, foldable or with an adjustable angle? If it has to be foldable, you need to know if you want to offer several angles. If the triangle is to be fixed, think about the height of the first step.
  • Ask yourself how long the rungs should be. Don’t forget that the climbing triangle has to fit through the door if it can’t be folded. You certainly don’t want to have to unscrew the screws every time you move.
  • Think about the distance between the rungs. If there’s too much space, children risk getting their heads stuck between the rungs. The recommended distance between rungs is about 12.5 cm.
  • What type of wood do you want to use and do you want to varnish it? Preferably use certified organic products, as there is direct contact with the skin. Use just one colour, as several different colours distract attention and don’t add any value.

Build your own Pikler triangle

The climbing triangle is for anyone who wants to go even higher. It has already conquered many children’s bedrooms over the last few years. Climb, keep your balance, climb the rungs and see how far you dare to go and what you can already do. What path can you take, can you manage it on your own and how do you get back down? Children can test and try themselves. The climbing triangle not only encourages motor development, but also serves to develop self-perception. Not only can children climb it, they can also build a cave and create a place of retreat, simply by throwing a blanket over it. Children are creative, playing Indians, role-playing and coming up with new ideas. The climbing triangle offers a multitude of possibilities.

Below, you’ll learn how to build your own climbing element that you can even fold up.

Useful tools

  • Mitre saw
  • Cordless drill/driver
  • Jigsaw
  • Ø28mm wood drill bit
  • 10mm twist drill bits
  • 5mm twist drill bit
  • Set of screwdriver bits
  • Conical countersink
  • Sanding paper

Materials required

  • 5 x round pine bar Ø 28 mm length 2400 mm
  • 2 x spruce bench batten 58 x 28 mm length 2400 mm
  • 2 x M8 x 30 mm knurled head screws
  • 2 x M8 nuts
  • Glued laminated pine panel 600 x 300 x 18 mm
  • Wood glue

DIY Pikler triangle video

Here’s a video on how to build your own Pikler triangle

Step-by-step instructions

Start by sawing the wood to the right size. Using the Forstner drill, drill the holes for the rungs to a depth of ten millimetres on each side of the four slats of the bench, at a distance of 150 millimetres. It’s important that all the holes are the same depth.

Then drill the two outer holes completely using the 5 mm wood drill bit. It’s best to do this from where the 28 mm holes are. This way, you’ll already be centred with the Forstner bit. On one side of the two longest bench strips, drill the adjacent hole with the 5 mm wood bit.

On the other side, the two shorter bench slats are drilled with a 15 mm deep hole 72 mm from the 5 mm hole. This is drilled with the 10 mm drill bit and is intended for the screw-on nut. This can now be screwed into the ten-millimetre hole.

The rungs can now be glued between the slats of the bench. The first and last rungs are still screwed on.

As soon as the glue has dried, remove the screw next to the screw nuts for the shorter bench slats. The screw is only used for fixing until the glue has dried. The same applies to one side of the longer bench slats, as the assembly triangle is now fitted there with these screws. In addition to the three screws on the left and right sides of the triangle, the knurled screw is screwed into the screw nut.

There are two holes for the knurled screw in the triangle. This means the climbing triangle can be folded away to save space if required.

Price comparison

Many people are certainly interested in the price of building a climbing triangle. You should expect to pay around €60 for the wood. Of course, the price also depends on whether you already have the necessary drills and screws at home or whether you also have to buy the materials. The self-built variant is in any case cheaper than the models you can buy off the shelf. That’s a saving of around half. It’s well worth building, because the Pikler triangle, originally designed for indoor use, can also be used outdoors in summer. Your children are sure to love it, and will be eager to try it out and climb it. We wish you lots of fun.