With fuel costs on the rise, a growing number of families in Canada are spending more time at home in their backyard enjoying the outdoors. To occupy the kids while the family is in the backyard – and to help children develop their co-ordination as well as giving them more physical exercise – parents are turning to outdoor playground sets.
These are not the simple backyard swing sets with two swings and a slide that you played with as a child – today’s high quality, sophisticated, wooden ‘play systems’ are multifaceted devices that offer a variety of choices and options such as swings, gym rings, trapeze bars, gliders, spiral tube slides, monkey bars, gang planks and tree houses, just to mention a few.
Generally speaking, outdoor wooden play systems are designed for children ages two and up, however, an infant swing can be used for children 8-12 months old. These sets are made to withstand all weather conditions and are easy to maintain – only requiring periodical staining or sealing of the wood.
And contrary to popular belief, your kids will use them in the fall and winter months as well as in the warmer weather months.
Popular play sets from Eastern Jungle Gym Inc.®, which manufactures a wide array of jungle gyms, include the Dream®, Sky®, Fantasy®, and Imagination® models. These play sets include clubhouses that range from 1.5m to 2.1m (5 ft. to 7 ft.) in height with multiple slides and activities. There is even a ‘Tree House’ model for the dad who never got around to building one of his own as a child …