Creating a Play Structure for Kids That Is Both Safe and Fun

by | Apr 26, 2012 | Business

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Remember how, when you were a kid, all of the things that parents and other adults considered “safe” didn’t seem nearly as much fun as the activities you were told were dangerous? Reflecting on childhood thrill-seeking as an adult, it’s easy to realize that today’s children probably have the same attitude about what we consider safe or dangerous, and a responsible adult will try to steer kids toward safer activities. When it comes to a choosing a play structure for an outdoor playground, it is possible to install a structure with safety features that appeal to the adults that kids will also find fun and enjoyable to play on.

One of the biggest concerns with play structures is the possibility of a fall from the top of the structure to the ground. However, many play structures are now incorporating webbing and nets that prevent children from dropping to the ground if they lose their grip. Rather than trying to ignore the desire that children have to climb, such a play structure recognizes that children find climbing fun. A play structure that allows climbing will be enjoyed by children, but it can also be considered safe by adults through the strategic use of webbing.

Another safety issue on a playground is the proximity of one play structure to another. Children are routinely injured on playgrounds when moving from one structure to another or when someone comes off of one structure and runs into someone else. This is an issue not so much of structure safety as it is of traffic control. In the planning stages of your playground, make sure to allow enough space between each structure for at least three children to walk side by side. Such an allowance will mean that when the playground is rife with enthusiastic, energetic children, everyone can remain safe.

You can increase the safety of any structure by making sure that the fill that you are using in the play area is at least 12 inches deep under and around any structure that is taller than the children using it. Also, regularly check to make sure that fill has not been moved away from the structure through the course of play. If it has, make sure that it is spread evenly about the structure. If the play area utilizes a synthetic surface instead of fill, make sure that the surface is free of cracks or cuts.

The children that play on your playground never need to know how incredibly safe you have made it. Just allow them to enjoy their playtime as though each play structure is the most dangerous piece of equipment they have ever been on. They will think it is tons of fun and only you will know your safety secret.

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