When the weather is temperate, the outdoors begin to tempt children and adults alike. When it comes to playtime, parents may want to enjoy the nice weather and bring their kids to a park or playground. Making this kind of decision seems like an easy one – you can enjoy the outdoors while your children play on swings, monkey bars and other fun attractions. Going to a playground is a great idea, but it is important that you remember to keep some things in mind before you go and while you’re there. According to kidshealth.org, more than 200,000 kids are treated in hospital ERs for playground-related injuries. It is important that you keep your kids safe and do all that you can to ensure that their time playing outside is as enjoyable as possible.
It is absolutely imperative that parents make sure that they are present and that they are aware of what their kids are up to. Keeping a watchful eye on your children is essential, and no matter where they are in a park or what they are doing on a playground, it is important that you know what they are doing and that they are safe. Keeping a good watch can help ensure that your child does not wander off, of course, but it can also help you keep track of what your child is doing, what they are touching, and if they are generally okay.
If your child needs help with something, you can help them where needed and you can even make sure that they do not do anything dangerous that they are not supposed to, like jump from the top of slides or other things that will only lead to them hurting themselves. If your child is small, keeping an eye on them can help you ensure that they are using slides that are appropriate for them and that they are not trying to get up on high monkey bars or anything they may not be old enough for yet.
Assess the Safety Features
Playgrounds are likely not the same as they were when you were a kid. Many parks now feature rubber flooring and other protective measures to help better guarantee a safe experience for children. When you head to a park, take a look at these features. First, check whether the park you are visiting has them and then see whether they seem to be in good shape. Sometimes small nicks and imperfections can occur with overuse. If you notice anything amiss, you can try and call your local Parks and Recreation department. Since most parks are publicly maintained on a regular basis, you can rely on these issues being dealt with quickly and efficiently, as long as the Parks and Recreation department is aware of the problem.
Look for the Right Park
Some parks are made for general playing whereas others are specifically designed for certain age groups. If your child is smaller, then you will want to look for a park that accommodates their needs. The same goes for older children. Some parks offer a bit of variety, but generally you will want to make sure that smaller children play on smaller playgrounds so that everything is at their level, and that older children play on larger playgrounds – both because it is designed for them and their size, and older children can also potentially harm younger children by accident if playing in smaller parks (unless they are helping you look after younger ones, of course).
There are many things to consider when visiting parks and playgrounds, but a lot of it comes from being aware and knowing your kids. Since parks are generally public places, it is important that you are aware of your surroundings and your child’s surroundings. It is also important that you remain aware of your child’s behavior as well, since they will be playing with and around other children, and sometimes even interacting with other parents as well. Make sure that you keep track of what your child does, how they conduct themselves and anyone else that may be in the area. In the event of a dispute or an incident, it is important to keep both eyes open at all times and to pay attention to everything that you can. With all of that in mind, it may seem like going to the park is more stress than it’s worth, but once you get used to the flow of things, which parks are best for your child and which ones are the safest, as well as the sorts of people who frequent those parks, you and your whole family can eventually feel comfortable and enjoy the outing.