Even though outdoor play is an essential part of childhood most people probably don’t think about the benefits of slides in playgrounds.
Did you know there are many more benefits of playground slides than just high-speed fun?
You’ve probably noticed that most commercial playgrounds, whether municipal or at schools, include slide equipment.
Slides are a traditional component of playground equipment that has stuck around for decades. This is due to their popularity and the variety of styles that can be offered including straight, spiral, curved, and tube slides, among others.
Whether your favourite playground includes a double slide for parents to accompany their children, a 4-foot wave slide for little ones, or a long tube slide for adventurous older children, all of these have something in common - a plethora of physical and social developmental benefits!
Physical Benefits of Slides
Improved Upper & Lower Body Strength
Children must climb to reach the top of the playground slide, which requires the use of upper and lower body strength as well as fine coordination and balance. The thrill of the slide is a powerful motivator for children to use their arms and legs to pull themselves up a ladder, net, or other climbing structure.
Improved Coordination & Balance
Both coordination and balance are used further after successfully climbing to the top as slide usage further enhances these skills.
Improved Core Strength
In addition to leg and arm strength, sitting up while sliding requires core strength, which supports further muscle development to help keep children strong and healthy.
Social Benefits of Slides
The importance of outdoor play has been well documented. Using playground slides also helps to promote social development as children must practice patience and exercise their spatial awareness while waiting their turn.
It’s important for children to learn to move throughout space without bumping into each other. During this time, they must be aware of others using the slide and gauge when there is enough space to safely proceed.
It cannot be emphasized enough how sliding down a tall slide helps to improve confidence, which also helps children to conquer their fears on their own. This boost will have lasting social benefits as children engage and play with their peers.
Playgrounds Are an Extension of the Classroom
In many ways, both school and commercial municipal playgrounds are extensions of the classroom.
While children are getting fresh air and exercise, they are also learning and testing themselves using the play structures. The play equipment has been carefully crafted by expert playground equipment manufacturers to engage as many skills and senses as possible for the children while still maximizing fun.
The next time you and your child visit a park or school yard with playground equipment, pay close attention to the benefits of slides in playgrounds and all the excitement surrounding them.
About Green Roots Play Equipment
As a family owned and operated business, Green Roots Play Equipment has been distributing and installing 100% Canadian made commercial playground equipment and site furnishings for more than two decades. We can help you with planning, design, excavation, site preparation and playground equipment installation.
Please call us toll free at 1-855-382-7529 to learn more about the benefits of slides in playgrounds or to inquire about available playground grants in BC through the BC government’s Playground Equipment Program (PEP grants).