10 pieces of play equipment for your unique playground design16 May 2023
Creating a unique playground design is an exciting task that requires careful consideration of the play equipment that will be incorporated. With so many options available, it can be challenging to decide which pieces of play equipment are the best fit for your playground.
The most popular playgrounds tend to be designed with a space that can fulfil the needs of all children, no matter how small the play area is. To create a unique play space, a mix of classic equipment such as seesaw’s and swings combined with newer sensory equipment is a must.
So, let's dive in and explore the top 10 pieces of play equipment for your unique playground design.
Swings have been a beloved playtime activity for generations. Whether it's at the park, in the backyard, or hanging from a tree, swings are a classic way to have fun and let loose. Whilst traditional swings have survived the test of time, newer designs such as cross-scale swings and triple swings can be implemented into playground designs to increase the excitement by allowing for different motions to be experienced!
See-saws have also been a popular playground staple for generations. Whilst being an outdated piece of equipment, they offer a fun and interactive way for children to engage in physical play whilst developing balance and coordination skills. The popularity of See-saws have only increased in recent year with the introduction of ‘jackstraw’ see-saws, that allow multiple children to join in, as well as wheelchair accessible see-saws that allow for a more inclusive experience.
Slides are another classic piece of playground equipment that never seem to lose popularity. Suitable to all ages, children love the thrill of climbing to the top and sliding back down at high speeds. More unique slides that can capture the excitement of children include tunnel slides that add the thrill of sliding through the dark, which can also be added onto animal structures such as an elephant’s trunk to inspire more imaginative play!
Water play is a great way to add a unique and exciting element to any playground design, which is sure to entertain children. Not only is it a fun way for children to cool off on a hot day, but it also offers a sensory-rich experience that can help with physical, social, and emotional development. Designs such as water pumps, lock gates and water switches allow for children to play with the water in various ways that can develop they’re learning skills, which is widely documented about.
Sand play is a fantastic way to introduce unique and engaging activities to a playground design. A well-designed sand play area with aspects such as transportation systems and building sites can provide endless opportunities for imaginative play, problem solving and social skills whilst also developing their sensory skills similar to water play. The hands-on aspect of sand play is sure to grab the attention of younger children whilst adding a fun element to your playground design.
Musical elements are an entertaining addition to any playground design, providing a fun and interactive experience that engages children's senses and creativity. Incorporating equipment such as dance chimes and gongs can take the musical experience to the next level. Dance chimes are interactive musical instruments that can be placed in the playground that allow children to use their feet to create a range of sounds and explore rhythm and melody while engaging with them. Gongs, on the other hand, can be used to create deep, resonant tones that can be felt throughout the body. By introducing musical elements into a playground design, designers can create an environment that engages children's senses and encourages them to explore the world around them in a new way.
Climbing structures add a more challenging way for children to build strength, coordination and confidence and are great for playground designs. Incorporating unique designs such as climbing forest’s or climbing pyramids can take the experience to the next level. A climbing forest is a network of interconnected structures that provide a variety of climbing challenges for children, such as rope bridges, platforms, and tunnels, which encourages teamwork and problem solving, all while fostering a love for the great outdoors. Similarly, a climbing pyramid provides an exciting focal point in the playground and can be used to promote imaginative play. By incorporating climbing structures into a playground design, designers can create an environment that challenges children both physically and mentally.
A playground classic! Roundabouts can be a thrilling addition to any playground design, providing an exhilarating way for children to experience motion and speed. Adding equipment such as carousels and spinners can take the roundabout experience to the next level. Carousels are circular platforms that rotate and can be used for individual or group play, whilst also having disabled access on modern designs allowing for inclusivity. Similarly, spinners are individual structures that allow children to spin around, providing a fun and stimulating way to develop balance, coordination, and proprioception.
Incorporating traditional games into a playground design can provide children with a fun and educational way to learn about history and culture while also promoting socialization and critical thinking. Games such as pairs and chess can be incorporated into playgrounds to take the traditional gaming experience to the next level. Pairs game is a matching game that challenges children's memory and cognitive skills, and encourages the child to focus and problem-solve. Similarly, chess boards provide an opportunity for children to learn a complex game that teaches critical thinking and strategy. Traditional games offer a different experience within a playground, probing children to use their mental skills rather than physical.
Trim trails are a unique playground design that provides children with a fun and challenging outdoor activity. With a range of equipment including totter beams, jumping discs, and stepping logs, these trails offer a range of physical challenges that help children to develop their balance, coordination, and strength. With designs looking to challenge children further, traditional totter beams can be developed into a rotating beam, testing children’s balance further as the beam spins! if you're looking for an exciting and engaging playground design that will keep children active and entertained, consider incorporating a Trim trail into your outdoor space.
Timberplay specialise in natural, landscape-led play solutions for the UK, Middle East and beyond. If you want to find out more about the equipment mentioned and working with Timberplay contact us here for a chat.