We welcomed Rody the Pony into our home when Matthew turned 3. I guess he's just a fancy version of the hopping ball. Bill says he looks like a weird rabbit, not a pony.
Rody offers a few advantages over the hopping ball. For Matthew, Rody is easier to mount and dismount compared to the hopping ball. Rody is easier to hop on. Given that he is a hopping toy, there is a real possibility of falling over to the side or forward as weight is shifted on the horse while bouncing.
We started out by spotting Matthew very closely as he had a tendency to fall sideways. But since he's a little stronger now and has better reflexes and control, he will ride Rody and purposefully fall off Rody in a very controlled manner and say "Whoa!". It's one of his favorite things to do.
He can independently ride Rody and move a couple feet forward with him but not down the full length of our hallway yet.
Elizabeth's interaction with Rody is limited to chewing on his ears and crawling over it when on its side. She gets to ride Rody too but only with me holding her. The toy is rated for ages 3 to 5 so it will be a while before Elizabeth goes bouncing around the house on Rody by herself.