Installing Home Playground Equipment

Gardenerdy Staff Nov 7, 2018
Installing park equipment in the house motivates the kids to play in the open air. Get acquainted with some tips and suggestions for installing it at home.
With the increasing popularity of television, video games, and computers, most children do not feel the need to go out to playgrounds. They are no longer interested in playing outdoors, as they have ways to entertain themselves in the confines of their homes. Moreover, there are times when the parents are pressed for time due to their hectic schedule.
However, the fact remains that exercise is essential for healthy physical and mental growth of children. If time doesn't permit you to take your kids to the playground, why not get the playground to the kids? It's a very good option. Try installing one right in your backyard.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) of the United States of America has specified a few precautions to be taken while constructing a playground and designing playground equipment plans. It has also specified some criteria to ensure the safety of your kids.
  • Install a shock-absorbing floor before starting the installation. For added safety, place rubber or rubber-like material mats, especially close to high equipment. The CPSC suggests the use of thick layers of wood chips, shredded rubber, mulch, sand, or pea gravel around the area.
  • Install protective surfacing, specially for swings, that extend twice the height of the suspending chains.
  • Never attach ropes, jump ropes, or clothes lines to the equipment; children may trip over these.
  • Avoid having any open "S" hooks or protruding bolt ends. If needed, bend the open pointed end inside or cover it up with rubber/plastic caps.
  • If there is any space between guardrails or ladder rungs, keep it less than 3.5 inches or more than 9 inches. This ensures that a child cannot get trapped in or pass through without getting stuck.
  • All the platforms, ramps, bridges, and ladders should have guardrails to prevent the kids from falling.
  • Check if the equipment has sharp points or edges. If it does, try to cover it up with foam or rubber material.
  • Remove exposed concrete footings, tree stumps, and rocks that can cause the kids to trip.
  • Maintenance of these play materials should be done on a regular basis.
  • It is better not to have any water bodies or pits in the vicinity of the play area. If you have a swimming pool nearby, install a proper partition between them.
  • Proper supervision of elders is essential when the kids are playing. This especially applies in case of very young kids.
  • A full-fledged first aid kit should be ready for any emergencies.
The outdoor play area should be designed keeping in mind the age of the kids and the purpose of each item.

Slides

It can be used by kids of all age group. Even toddlers can play on them with some elders around. The height can be decided according to the age of the child.
There are slides known as tunnel slides that are closed like a tube. See to it that they are wide enough and do not have any nails or other hardware protruding out. Slides are effective in exercising the body as the kid has to climb the ladder to get to the top.

Swings

Swings are of many types. There are flat swings without any support. These are good for kids, big enough to take care of themselves.
For younger kids and infants, install swings with support. They are effective to improve balance and a good exercise for legs and back.

Mazes

They take up a lot of space but are a practical puzzle for the kids. They help to exercise the mind of the child effectively.

Play Panels

Play panels are good for mental growth and basic learning, as they include puzzles and cardboard games on an enlarged plastic board. These could prove to be good educational toys for children.

Climbers

These are effective in exercising the upper torso, especially the arms. Again these play tools should be installed depending on the height and maturity of the kid. Make sure to place a shock-absorbing mat under them, if they're too high.

Seesaws

Seesaws help to improve the body balance and legs. They are not recommended for infants, though some seesaws have seats with support.
Make sure you choose colorful equipments. You can set a theme for the play area. Some tools are available in ready-to-install kits, can be easily set up. Still, install plastic ones taking professional help for safety measures, so that kids enjoy the fun rides with safety.