A seesaw is one of the most common playground equipment for home and commercial play areas. It’s usually the easiest to make because you just need two platforms and a single board or beam to connect them.
Seesaws are great for kids because they help them develop a sense of balance. This is important for gross motor development and coordination. Seesaws also encourage social interaction as kids take turns going up and down. They help kids develop both physically and emotionally.
If you’re wondering whether you need to add this equipment to your playground, there are many reasons why you should. Read on to learn more about a seesaw and why it’s important for kids.
What Is a Seesaw?
A seesaw is a piece of playground equipment that consists of two platforms connected by a board or beam. Kids sit on opposite ends of the platform and take turns going up and down. Seesaws can be made from different materials, such as wood, metal, or plastic.
Seesaws have been around for centuries and are one of the most popular pieces of playground equipment. They can be found in nearly every playground and are staples in many childhood memories.
Why Are Seesaws Important for Kids?
Seesaws offer many benefits for kids, both physically and emotionally.
Physical Benefits of Seesaws
Seesaws are an excellent way for kids to get exercise and have fun at the same time. Here are the physical benefits they get from this playground equipment.
- Building Muscles
Seesaws provide a great workout for kids as they use their muscles to go up and down. This helps to build strength and coordination.
- Burning Calories
Seesaws are also a great way for kids to burn off some extra energy. Going up and down on a seesaw requires quite a bit of effort, which means kids are burning calories while they play.
- Improve Balance
The whole concept of seesaw play is to balance yourself and your partner. This helps kids to develop a sense of balance, which can be beneficial in other areas of their lives, such as sports.
- Strengthening Bones
As kids play in the seesaw, their bones are also getting a workout. This type of activity helps to make bones stronger, which can reduce the risk of fractures later on in life.
- Improving the Immune System
Being physically fit helps to improve the function of the immune system. As kids play on a seesaw, they are helping to keep their immune system functioning properly.
- Improves General Health
Playing on the seesaw is a great way for kids to get some exercise. This can help to improve their overall health and wellbeing.
Seesaws also offer some emotional benefits for kids. Here are some of them.
- Develop Social Skills
Playing on a seesaw requires cooperation and communication with others, which can help to develop social skills. When kids become social, they’re more likely to succeed in school and their future careers.
- Boost Self-Confidence
Seesaws can also boost kids’ self-confidence. When they can cooperate with others and take turns, it can help them feel good about themselves. This can lead to success in other areas of their lives as well.
- Improves Communication
Learning to communicate is an important life skill that kids need as they grow up. Playing on a seesaw can help because it requires them to take turns and cooperate with others. This can help them learn how to communicate effectively.
- Sharing and Caring
When playing on the seesaw, kids also learn to share and care for others. They have to take turns and work together to make the seesaw work. This can help them learn how to be considerate of others and share with them.
- Overcoming Fear
For some kids, the seesaw can be a bit scary. But as they overcome their fears and learn to ride them, they can also learn to face other fears in their lives. This can help them build confidence and become more independent.
Choosing the Right Seesaw for Your Kids
While seesaws come with many benefits, your kids will only enjoy them if they have the right type. So, how do you choose the right seesaw for your kids? Here are things you must consider.
The Age of Your Child
Age is an important factor when it comes to playground equipment. And that’s because different age groups have different capabilities.
For instance, a baby seesaw is designed for kids aged 6 to 24 months. It has a padded seat and a U-shaped handle in the middle to help your little one stay seated. The seat is also low to the ground, so your child can easily get on and off without struggling.
On the other hand, a toddler seesaw is designed for kids aged 2 to 5 years. It’s a bit bigger and has a higher seat. This type of seesaw also doesn’t have a U-shaped handle in the middle.
As for kids aged five years and up, they can use a standard seesaw. This type of seesaw is the biggest and has the highest seat. There’s also no U-shaped handle in the middle.
The weight limit is also an important consideration. If you have heavier kids, you should go for a seesaw that can accommodate their weight.
So, when choosing a seesaw for your child, make sure to pick the right age group and weight limit. Otherwise, they might not be able to use it properly or might even get injured.
The Size of Your Playground
You also need to consider the space you have in your backyard before setting up a seesaw. If you have a small space, then a toddler or kids’ seesaw would be a good option. On the other hand, if you have ample space, you can go for a standard seesaw.
Size is another important consideration when choosing a seesaw. If you have limited space in your backyard or playground, you should opt for a smaller size. However, if you have plenty of space, you can go for a bigger size.
How much you’re willing to spend on a seesaw is also an important consideration. You can find seesaws at different price points, so it’s important to set a budget before you start shopping. However, ensure you don’t always settle for cheap because, in most cases, quality comes at a price. Also, don’t be cheated into buying expensive equipment when you can get a cheaper but high-quality one.
The Type of Seesaw You Need
The type of seesaw you need will also be determined by the age and number of kids playing on it. If you’re buying for toddlers, then you should go for a smaller and lighter seesaw that’s easy for them to handle. On the other hand, if you have older kids, you can go for a bigger and sturdier one.
Shape and Design
The shape and design of the seesaw is also important consideration. You should ensure that it has a stable and sturdy base so that it doesn’t tip over easily. The seat and the backrest should also be comfortable for the kids to use.
Portability is another factor you need to consider when choosing a seesaw. If you want a seesaw that you can carry with you when going camping or to the park, then you should choose a portable one.
Number of Seats
Seesaws come with either one seat or two seats. If you have two kids, then you can go for a two-seater seesaw. However, if you only have one child, you can opt for a single-seater seesaw. Just make sure all your kids will be accommodated without any problems.
How do you use a seesaw?
A seesaw can be used in different ways. However, the most common way to use it is by having two people sit on either end and then push off from the ground to make the other person go up in the air.
Are Seesaws safe for kids?
Yes, seesaws are safe for kids to play on as long as they are used properly. Ensure you consider the age of your kids and their weight and size when choosing a seesaw. Also, make sure the seesaw is in good condition before allowing your kids to play on it.
What is the difference between a seesaw and a teeter-totter?
The main difference between a seesaw and a teeter-totter is that a seesaw has a fulcrum in the middle while a teeter-totter does not. This means that a seesaw can be used by two people of different weights, whereas a teeter-totter requires two people of similar weights. Additionally, teeter-totters are typically smaller than seesaws.
With all the benefits that kids get from playing on seesaws, it’s no wonder that they are such a popular playground staple. If you’re looking for a fun addition to your home playground, consider getting a seesaw. Just make sure you consider the factors mentioned in this article to buy a perfect seesaw for your little ones.