A great deal more high-level international scientific studies bear upon the use of backyard swing sets than one would imagine. Naturally, the industry that produces kids play sets is careful to conduct rigorous controlled product safety testing, but perhaps even more interesting is that children’s play equipment receives substantial attention from researchers in the fields of medicine and psychology.
Children’s Physical Activity Levels Influence Lifelong Health
Medical research suggests that when a child’s physical activity level is persistently elevated, he or she will be more likely to engage in comparable physical activity levels as an adult, and thereby stem or prevent the numerous maladies over which we exert varying degrees of control. A young girl, for example, can augment her bone strength through daily exercise, decreasing the likelihood that she will later develop osteoporosis. By engaging in daily athletics, one minimizes body fat and raises his level of lean muscle mass, both of which can help overcome genetic predispositions to gain weight as one matures.
Government Studies Recommend Children’s Play Equipment to Schools
Studies conducted by both government health departments and leading universities have all but mandated that school systems devote increased attention to, and funding for, kids play sets for use during recess periods. The children’s play equipment enjoyed during gym periods two or three times per week is fine, but insufficient. Not enough time is spent in physical education classes to meet even the least demanding doctor’s exercise recommendations.
By providing extra children’s play equipment, such as monkey bars and swing sets, on the school grounds, children have greater opportunity to engage in unstructured, non-competitive play, whether during lunch period or after school. The exercise level equals what is expected of them in gym class.
Kid’s Play Sets and Backyard Swing Sets Implement Doctor’s Recommendations
Wisdom suggests that the recommendations for children’s physical activity levels at school, particularly because they cannot be fully met during the school day, need to carry over and apply to leisure time activities beyond the schoolyard. Backyard swing sets are a perfect complement to playground and gym equipment.
Behaviorists note that many children dislike organized athletics and resist participation in structured games. Outside the obligatory gym classes, such children may only rarely exercise at the recommended levels of stress and frequency for their age. Providing kids play sets at home, or installing backyard swing sets, presents children with appealing freestyle exercise opportunities to complete the health and physical education requirements to which they are introduced during the school day.
Whenever one improves a child’s physical activity level, one promotes greater health, and over time, a higher quality of life. Elevated childhood physical activity levels can reduce the frequency and severity of chronic ailments later in life, as well as provide emotional and psychological uplift through the difficult phases of adolescence and the teens. The freestyle, non-competitive yet vigorous activity in which kids engage while playing on backyard swing sets, especially those that feature slides, ramps, ladders and rings, is an invaluable component to their exercise program.
I work in the parks and recreation industry and I generally write about residential playgrounds.
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