Adventure playgrounds have been around since World War II. They are most popular in Europe, but they are becoming more popular in the United States because they offer kids the freedom to explore and take risks with ‘loose’ or ‘raw’ landscape materials in a safe and secure environment.
If you are looking for a fun and unique playground design for your project, consider an adventure playground. Because there aren’t many of these playgrounds in the U.S., yours will surely stand out! And April is the perfect month to start thinking about this, as the temps are warming up – and it’s World Landscape Architecture Month!
What is an Adventure Playground, Exactly?
An adventure playground is a place where kids can create and change their own environment, as well as engage in safe risk taking. Instead of typical playground equipment like swings and slides, you’ll find loose pieces of material (wood, tires), as well as moving parts like zip lines, nets and boulders.
Adventure playgrounds are typically located in enclosed, supervised spaces. They appeal to slightly older children between the ages of 7 to 13, though younger children can play as well, so long as they are supervised. Because the space is enclosed, kids are able to run around freely.
Benefits of an Adventure Playground
If you’re looking for an alternative to a traditional playground, an adventure playground is worth considering. Here are some reasons why:
- Problem solving. Kids can spend time building structures, thinking through problems and using their creativity.
- Safe risk taking. Taking risks in safe environments helps kids build confidence and learn valuable life skills.
- Unique. New research shows the importance of unstructured play that fosters creativity and independence. An adventure playground offers this in a fun and exciting way.
- Develop friendships. As kids play, explore and problem solve, they often collaborate with peers and create friendships.
What to Include in Your Adventure Playground
Are you ready to create a new vision for play? Adventure playgrounds are similar to natural playground designs and playful landscapes, with the difference being that they include loose pieces and raw materials. So, what does your adventure playground design look like? Just that—Your own!
Using non-typical materials like ropes, nets, boulders, etc. and staying away from traditional post and platform play equipment, you can design unique play and fitness spaces where children create their own play adventure while staying active. Here are some ideas for what to include in your adventure playground:
- Hillside slides
- Ropes and nets
- Wooden towers/structures
- Rocks and boulders
- Water Play
To discuss your plans for an adventure playground, contact CR Studio Design. We can help you design a safe and engaging area for unstructured play.