Creating a Children's Play Area

Thinking of installing a play area in your garden? Are you a bit unsure where to start? Well we thought we’d provide 6 key considerations for when you’re ready to put your DIY hat on and give creating a children’s play area a go!

Decide On What to Install

1) The first consideration will most likely be to decide what sort of play area you would like to install. The little ones don’t stay that way forever so maybe if you’re on a tighter budget you could look for a more future proof option that will stand the test of time. For example this could be a climbing frame that caters to a wider age range rather than equipment that’s solely aimed at younger children. Or, the other option is to go for equipment such as a play sand pit which has many benefits for children such as encouraging social skills to developing a creative imagination.

Is There Enough Room?

2) Next, we would then consider the space available in your garden to place the selected equipment. This can be a tricky one as not everyone’s garden is a regular square/rectangle shape or has ample space to play with. However, with the right tools it makes it much easier to know exactly what you need for your specific area. If for example a play sand pit is being installed, you can use our handy sand calculator or if in doubt, speak to one of our knowledgeable advisers.

Ground Preparation

3) Moving on, we would then look into preparing the ground. With most equipment you will want a nice flat surface for the base. Who wants a climbing frame that resembles the leaning tower of Pisa? The more prep work that’s done at this stage, the better the results will be at the end. As the saying goes, it’s all in the preparation!

Installation

4) On to the installation stage. This is where we would advise (if you are taking the DIY approach) thoroughly going through installation instructions and always making sure you have the right tools for the job before you start! There’s not much worse than getting yourself geared up to tackle a DIY project, only to find that you don’t have a specific tool. Everything seems to come to an abrupt halt and motivation levels waver. Do it right and plan ahead to get the job done in one sitting (if possible). If in doubt, or you’re not entirely sure, consult a professional.

Health & Safety

5) Throughout the project, health and safety should be the most important consideration, even more so when creating an area for children to play. This can be as simple as choosing a suitable place for your chosen equipment to go (possibly with a sand pit in an area that doesn’t get too much sun and can be shaded) to maintenance tips after the project is complete. Let’s take our sand pit example once more, we would recommend using a non-toxic paint for wooden surfaces or an anti-corrosive paint for metal parts. When it comes to maintenance, things to consider would be whether there are any sharp edges to a wooden pit. These can be checked easily and sanded down to make them safe for children to play till their hearts content. A further consideration would be to cover sand pits when not in use, as you don’t exactly know what may get into the sand (possibly insects or the household pet using it as a litter tray). Also, before use rake the sand to ensure no foreign objects are present that you wouldn’t want your child playing with whilst in the pit.

Maintenance

6) Equipment maintenance should be another important consideration. This is a simple one that shouldn’t take too much time every now and again. All we would recommend is to take the time to regularly check the installed equipment for any issues. This could be for example checking for splinters on a wooden pit or loose bolts on a climbing frame.

Installing a play area for your children in your back garden can be a great way to get the kids outdoors and for them to learn new skills. A great example of this is with a sand pit. It’s a great way to promote social skills, promote physical development and to stretch a child’s imagination with all the different objects that can be sculpted. So why not don your DIY hat, get planning and create a garden play area.

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