Playgrounds are a great place for kids to have fun and exercise. The playground can be a great place to let your imagination run wild and burn off some energy. But for all these to happen, you need to ensure it’s safe.
There are regulations regarding safety in playgrounds, including the recommended height, materials to use, inspection, and maintenance needs, among others. Some only need you to use common sense, such as supervising your kids while they play, keeping dirt and debris off, and ensuring kids wear appropriate clothes.
By keeping some of these safety tips in mind, you can make sure that the time you spend on playground climbers is enjoyable and safe. Below are some safety tips to consider for playgrounds.
Wear the Proper Clothing
One of the most important things you can do to stay safe for playground climbers is to wear the proper clothing. You should avoid loose-fitting clothes that could get caught on climbing equipment. Long hair should be tied back to avoid getting in your way or becoming a hazard.
Do not let your child wear jewelry such as necklaces or clothing with strings. Strings, jewelry, and loose clothing can easily catch onto equipment and trap or strangle your child. If your kid wears any of these clothing, remove them before letting them play.
Children Younger Than Four Years Shouldn’t Use Climbing Structures
Children under the age of four do not have the ability and strength to climb well or break a fall. So if you have children under this age, it’s best to keep them off of climbing structures. There are many other age-appropriate equipment that they can use.
Do Not Allow Your Kid to Play on Any Structure That’s Eight Feet or Higher
Climbing structures that are eight feet or higher can be very dangerous for kids. If they fall from this height, they could suffer a serious injury. Climbing structures such as monkey bars may be a bit higher for your kids, and this can increase your child’s risk for injury. Any surface below the structure will not be safe enough to protect your child.
Inspect the Climbing Structure Before Your Kid Uses It
Ensure that the climbing structure is in good condition before allowing your kid to play on it. Look for any loose bolts or screws, cracks, or other damage. Do not let your kid play on the structure if you see any damage.
Avoid Overcrowded Climbing Structure
Do not allow your kid to play on overcrowded climbing structures, as this can increase the risk for injury. If there are too many kids on the structure, it may collapse. The structures are only designed to be safe for a few children to play on them at the same time. Your kid may have more trouble finding a safe hand or foot grip if more than a few kids are climbing it.
Monitor Your Child Closely While They’re Playing on a Climbing Structure
Watch your child closely while they are playing on climbing structures. Do not allow them to climb too high or play too rough. If you see them doing something unsafe, tell them to stop immediately.
Check for Loose Parts on Climbing Structures
Check it for loose parts before allowing your child to play on a climbing structure. Make sure that all the bolts are tight and that there are no sharp edges.
Do Not Use Climbing Equipment When it’s Wet
Climbing equipment can be very slippery when it’s wet. Do not allow your child to use climbing structures or equipment when it is raining or has recently rained. Using your climbing structure while it’s still wet can lead to serious injuries, and you don’t want to start spending some cash on treatment instead of your kid having fun.
Consider Other Children’s Swinging Feet
While your child is climbing up the structure, other children may be swinging on the swings. Their feet could accidentally kick your child while they are climbing. Be aware of this and tell other children to be careful.
You should also make sure that there is a designated area for swingers and climbers. This will help to avoid any accidents.
Climb in the Same Direction Like Other Climbers
When climbing, teach your child to go in the same direction as other climbers. This will help to avoid any accidental collisions. When you climb in the opposite direction, you’ll possibly hit each other and cause injury in the long run.
Take Your Time and Climb Carefully
Climbing is not a race. Teach your child to take their time and be careful. This will help to avoid any accidents. Also, climb while being mindful of other children. Do not climb on top of or in front of other children.
Use Both Hands and the Correct Grip
When climbing, be sure to use both hands and the correct grip. This will help to avoid any accidents. By using both hands, your kid will have enough energy to support himself in case of anything.
Wear the Correct Shoes
Make sure your child is wearing the correct shoes when climbing. This will help to avoid any accidents. The shoes should have proper grip to ensure a good grip on the climbing surface. Shoes should also be skid resistant and sturdy enough to protect the feet against glass, nails, and other objects.
Climbing can be a strenuous activity, so it is important to prevent dehydration. Be sure to bring plenty of water for your child to drink while climbing. A long period of play in the sunshine will make your child thirsty. Dehydration may cause him to be less alert and more clumsy while playing.
Put Sunscreen on Your Child’s Skin to Protect Him from Sunburn
Make sure to put sunscreen on your child’s skin before he goes outside to play. A sunburn can cause pain and dehydration and make your child more susceptible to heat exhaustion. Use a sunscreen that has an SPF of at least 30. Apply a generous amount to all exposed areas of your child’s face. Remember to apply it to your kid’s ears and the back of the neck. Use a waterproof sunscreen if your child will be playing in the water.
How to Check for General Playground Safety
Inspect the Equipment
Before letting your child play on any playground equipment, it is important to do a thorough inspection. Check for sharp edges, rough spots, or anything else that may hurt your child. Also, make sure that all bolts and screws are tightened and that there are no missing parts.
Look for Spaces in Equipment
It is also important to ensure that there are no spaces in the equipment where your child’s head could get stuck. This includes between bars on monkey bars or climbing equipment, as well as on slides.
Check All Ladder Steps
If the playground equipment has any ladder steps, it is important to ensure they are all in place and secure. Also, check to see that there are no gaps between the rungs on the ladder.
Check for Barriers
If there are any barriers around the playground equipment, ensure that they are high enough to prevent your child from climbing over them.
Check for Trash, Glass, Rusted Metal, and Poisonous Plants Around the Playground Equipment
It is also essential to check for any trash, glass, rusted metal, or poisonous plants around the playground equipment. If you see any of these things, be sure to remove them so that your child does not come into contact with them.
Inspect the Surface of the Playground Equipment
Finally, you will want to inspect the surface of the playground equipment. If the surface is made of concrete, asphalt, or dirt, you will want to make sure that it is level and free of any cracks or holes. If the surface is made of wood chips, you will want to make sure that they are free of splinters and not too deep.
What You Need to know About Supervising Your Kid
Children do not always use playground equipment as they should. Without supervision, your child can be injured on even the safest playground equipment. For this reason, stay with your kid or make sure an adult is present when your child plays.
Be alert always and ensure you know where your child is on the playground. Remind your child, especially at a young age, to play in an area where you can see them.
FAQs on Safe Climbing Playground
What is a safe playground?
A good playground should have surfaces that absorb impact and make it unlikely for a child to bounce or slide off. The equipment should also be stable and not topple over easily.
What do you do if someone is injured on the playground?
If someone or your child is injured on the playground, don’t panic, just stay calm. This way, your child can also stay calm as well. If the injury is mild, get first aid, follow the correct steps, and treat it.
What do you do if the playground is not safe?
If the playground is not safe, leave the playground with your child and explain why it’s not safe. Contact the person in charge of the playground immediately.
Final Thought on Safe Climbing Playground
Climbing is an excellent activity for children of all ages. It helps to build strength, coordination, and balance. With a bit of practice, your child will be climbing like a pro in no time. But, as with any physical activity, there are some safety concerns that you should be aware of. Follow these tips, and your child will be able to enjoy their time on the climbing structure safely.