When it comes to playgrounds the most important factor to children is obviously the fun factor. Give them slides, give them climbers, and please never forget the swings! Parents on the other hand have a different list of wants for the parks and school yard playgrounds that their children will be playing on. At the top of every parents list is obviously safety. How safe is this playground? Children run, they trip, and they get scraped knees. But when it comes to the more severe scenarios, such as falling off of the monkey bars, what is keeping the child safe at that point?
The answer is safety surfacing, and the best surfacing is of course poured-in-place rubber (PIP). I know most parents grew up with pea gravel or wood fiber, and we can all remember the kid in the class who came to school with the bright green arm cast. Back then we all wanted to sign the cast, but today we don’t want our kids in the cast in the first place!
PIP is the solution to the majority of safety concerns on a playground. This soft, absorbent, rubber material is designed specifically to protect a child’s head from hitting a hard surface. Unlike wood fiber or rubber mulch, PIP maintains the level of cushion throughout the play area. Any type of loose fill will be moved, kicked, washed away, or break down over time. And when kids fall it seems like these areas, where the loose fill is lower, become magnet for children.
Aside from the safety benefits of poured in place, this rubber surfacing truly allows children of all different types of accessibility to reach the playground features. Pushing a wheelchair across PIP is a smooth and natural motion. A wheelchair being pushed through wood fiber, pea gravel, or rubber mulch can feel like going through mud. So not only are children more physically protected with PIP but they’re also emotionally protected. PIP will allow for all children to play, imagine, and interact with each other; and most importantly they’ll be able to do it safely!