With recent reports showing that only a small fraction of children take part in outdoor activities compared with their parents’ generation – there’s even more reason to find imaginative ways to encourage today’s kids off the sofa.
Research suggests that only a third of boys climb trees, compared with nearly half of their dads when they were young, and only a quarter of girls use skipping ropes regularly compared with nine tenths a generation ago. But sympathetically landscaped adventure and themed playgrounds, with a balance of prescribed play products, help cultivate an adventurous spirit and reasonable risk-taking, as well as setting kids’ imaginations racing.
“We’ve always understood the importance of outdoor play to children’s development, of course”, says Stuart Wetherell, “But now, it’s time to allow children even more freedom in the great outdoors so that they can discover the joys of play in natural surroundings and experience the spirit of adventure once again.”
The current focus on children playing computer games indoors needs to shift. Children need to develop that sense of freedom and adventure that was once part of daily lives.
Given an adventure playground in a safe, supervised – yet natural – environment, all kids will invent their own games. They instinctively create roles and scenarios – often based around the specific theme of the playground – whether it’s pirates, explorers or kings and queens.
Adventure playgrounds provide a thrilling and challenging play experience while capturing the kids’ imaginations. Totem poles, logs, rocks, revetments and extra planting within the adventure playground add further stimulation to the whole play experience.