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August 2017

Outdoor play area essentials

What to look for in the perfect outdoor play area

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What to look for in the perfect play area

When designing an outdoor play area for a public park, within a school grounds or a private play area such as a hotel, theme park or family entertainment, there are a number of considerations that will make all the difference to making the play zone a success.

We have looked at factors that make for a successful children’s play area and broken these down to give you a rough guide of what we do when designing a playground for kids. Here are our golden rules of children’s playground design

Creating the right Atmosphere for children’s play

When considering installing a new play area for children one of the first things that we try to create is an atmosphere that invites and encourages people to linger. By doing this we can help to ensure that the play facility is popular and used by children and a place when their parents are happy to congregate.

Exploration for children’s play areas

We like to make sure that any playground or play area provides room for exploration as we believe that this is key to children’s play. In some ways this can work like a theatre stage so by changing the scenery in different areas you can create different play themes so that there is something to attract all the kids. This might be as simple as adding a slide behind a grassy slope or installing children’s toys with some function which is not immediately obvious. This causes curiosity which enhances the quality of childrens play.

A challenge for children leads to happier play which encourages longer play periods and more return visits . An example of this is the wooden toys that we have installed in play areas for smaller children including wooden motorbikes and wooden ponies. Kids explore in many ways but imaginative play is a great way to develop their skills. See our outdoor wooden wooden play products here.

Challenges in play areas

Popular children’s play will often include some aspect of adventure, whether it is a themed adventure with a Pirates boat at the centre or some physical adventure for the kids to enjoy. Children’s play is all about testing limits and learning new skills. As an example a wooden climbing frame may offer two routes back down to ground, these may include a slide and a rope bridge. This choice gives children options and makes their play time more exciting. Our bespoke wooden play products are ideal to inspire play of this sort.

How to achieve segregation in play zones

When a children’s play area is intended to offer space for large numbers it is often a good idea to include separate areas for different groups of kids to play. You will often see in a playground distinct groups of children often doing quite different things. So catering for this by offering play areas with different moods is essential.

There will always be groups of children, typically boys, who want to prove their power and others who are content enjoying less challenging environments. So by designing and installing an outdoor play area which has more than one central attraction like the wooden pirates boat it is easier to satisfy both groups of children’s play. Why not consider out selection of adventure trails for kids here.

In the old days we used to see signs up which prevented and deterred types of play in certain areas. However with good play ground design this segregation can occur naturally in most cases by making play zones for younger and older kids as well as meeting points for mums and dads. Remember many parents will attend public play areas to meet fellow parents and have a chat.

Call us for a chat about your outdoor play requirements

These are some of the basics that we consider when designing a new play area for children of all ages. Why not call us for a chat and we can arrange to visit your site to discuss your plans for installation of a new play are or the renovation of an existing playground, whether it’s for a park, school or theme park of other private location.