The big advantage of a hammock is that it can be quickly erected anywhere so long as you have two trees opposite one another.
This means you can slip a portable hammock into your bag and then put it up anywhere so long as you find the suitable anchor points. That way, you need never worry about being caught out with nowhere to sleep or about being lost and unable to get any rest.
But while hammocks are very versatile and portable in this way, they are still limited. After all, it’s not always convenient to find two anchor points that are just the right height and just the right distance apart.
If you’re in the woods then sure, you might be able to find something; but for most other situations it can be a stretch (literally!). On the beach, for instance, you’re going to struggle. And the same goes for around the house.
And this is where the hammock stand can become a fantastic joy. This is a piece of scaffolding that you can stand up anywhere and thereby hang your hammock from it.
Because these are free-standing, you won’t need to find two pre-existing anchor points and that, therefore, means that you can really hang your hammock literally anywhere so long as you have the floor space!
This post will look at hammock stands in more detail and help you to find the right one for your home and for your intended purpose.
There are a number of different types of hammock stands and these can all offer different benefits and weaknesses which may or may not make them suitable for your intended use, depending on what that may be.
For starters, hammock stands can vary in terms of the way they are designed. Generally, the role of the hammock stand is simple to provide two anchor points in a single unit, which will stretch the hammock between them.
This means though that the main bulk of the hammock stand can either go across the top of the hammock or along the bottom. When the construction is along the bottom of the hammock, it will then usually have two protruding arms on either end, which will hold the hammock between them.
Imagine getting an elastic band between two fingers and then stretching it apart. This is an interesting option because the result is actually not that dissimilar from a regular sunbed or any other piece of garden furniture and the hammock needn’t take up all that much space!
The other way for a hammock stand to be designed is with the main body of the stand above the hammock, which will then hang from the top with two arms coming down. This creates a more traditional looking hammock and usually allows for the hammock to be hung considerably higher.
But hammock stands come in any number of other shapes and sizes too. For instance, you will sometimes find hammock stands that consist primarily of a horizontal bar that runs parallel to the ground. From here, the hammock simply needs to be hung from the top at either end and then held in place somehow.
More elaborate designs include multiple hammocks arranged in a triangle, hammock stands that can rock from side to side, or hammock stands that are designed to be adjustable so you can easily make the hammock more or less taut by bringing the anchor points closer together or further apart.
Another great feature that you’ll find with some hammock stands is a cover or a canopy of some sort. These are great for keeping you dry when it starts to rain and will help you to get a better night’s sleep in a range of different environments as a result.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that different hammock stands are better suited to different types of hammocks. That is to say that if you have a double hammock – designed for sleeping two people – then you will need a double hammock stand to let them sleep in.
Likewise, if your hammock is particularly long or short, then you may once again need to think about whether it will fit the hammock stand.
Often you’ll find you can buy a ‘hammock with stand set’. This effectively gets you both the hammock and the stand in a single package and means that you’re guaranteed the hammock and the stand will work together.
What’s more, is that these hammocks with stand sets will normally come pre-constructed, meaning that you don’t need to worry about setting them up yourself.
Some hammock stands will be hammocks in name only. For example, it’s not uncommon to find hanging chairs that are referred to as ‘hammock stands’ and even hanging beds. Depending on your intended use, these might be a better fit.
A hammock chair is going to take up a lot less space on a patio, while also keeping you more upright and awake for activities like reading or chatting to friends – as opposed to being completely supine and probably sleeping as a result.
Once you know the type of hammock stand that you want, what’s left is to choose the material you want the hammock to be made from. Perhaps most popular is the wooden hammock stand, which has a very natural and even ‘beachy’ feel.
What’s more, is that a wooden hammock stand will be more resilient to the rain and other elements and this will allow you to use it in a wider range of locations. All in all, wooden stands are a great choice for many people.
Alternatively, you might decide you’d rather have a metal hammock stand. The advantage here is that you’re less likely to get mildew or termites and the whole construction will be a little lighter and probably more affordable.
Metal hammock stands do have the issue of rust to contend with though, so if you’re going to go this route then it might make more sense for an indoor hammock stand rather than an outdoor one – it certainly makes sense to choose wood if your hammock is intended to be poolside!
When choosing your hammock stand, you’ll likely have a spot for it in mind. But what happens when you move home? Or if you want to take your hammock with you on a trip?
This is where a portable hammock stand can become incredibly useful. This will essentially be a hammock stand that can just fold down into a small enough unit to be put in a bag or at least to be put in the car.
Portable hammock stands may not be as good for traveling light as using just a portable hammock thrown into a rucksack but they can nevertheless still be very handy if you’re driving somewhere or if you’re willing to take a little more luggage.
Again, these come with all kinds of designs. Some are little more than sticks that drive into the ground, others are folding contraptions and others still bend into shape.
See our full list of portable hammock stand reviews in order to see some great options that come recommended by us!
With all that in mind, all that’s left is to choose your hammock stand. How do you go about selecting the right one for you?
There are plenty of things that make a good hammock stand. These include the height and position that they hang the hammock in, the way they look in your home or outdoors and how sturdy they are versus how light.
The best way to choose your hammock stand is to decide where you’re going to use it and then what kind of vibe you want to create with it. If this is an indoor hammock stand, then you’ll probably want it to match your décor. What are you trying to say with your choice of decorating? ‘Come in and put your feet up’?
Likewise, if you’re using your hammock stand outdoors, think about the amount of available space and whether you want people to rest in or kickback. If you have a hammock already, think about which type of hammock stand it will naturally fit into best.
And of course, if you’re traveling, then think about the practical aspects. Just how small will your portable hammock stand be able to fold and is it light enough to take on a serious trip?
And don’t forget that it’s always a viable option to build your own hammock stands if you’re feeling creative and you’re willing to give it a go! That way, you can create something that is just perfect for your home and that will give you the best possible position for relaxing and sleeping.
If you want to get more recommendations on hammock stands then click the link for our full set of reviews!