It’s never obvious how many dangerous hazards fill our everyday environment until we have children. Once they really start to run and play outside, painful bumps, cuts, bruises and worse become a fact of life. To avoid that, some parents encourage their children to stay indoors and pursue “safe” low-energy activities, but that’s not a great solution. Outdoor play is a critical part of your child’s development, and builds the foundation for their physical health and fitness while providing a space for healthy social development and stress management.
As parents, it’s up to us to ensure our little ones have a safe place to pursue those activities. Making a space truly safe can can seem like an impossible task, but there are a few simple things that you can do to make sure your backyard is as safe as it can be.
Build a Shed and Use It
Don’t leave potentially hazardous objects lying around within easy reach of your kids. Rakes, shovels, hoses, grills, glass patio furniture and other things like these can cause serious injuries if your kids play with them or clamber around on them. Keep gardening and outdoor equipment locked away in a shed with a secure lock, and teach your children not to treat these objects as toys.
This isn’t just specifically keep those items out of reach; it’ll also help you keep your yard clear of clutter and debris, making it safer to run around and play without worrying about occasionally tripping or falling down in the grass.
Do Regular Maintenance and Inspections
Outdoor play equipment such as trampolines, fabric swings and web swings can weather and wear like anything else. Inspect play sets, swingsets, and trampolines regularly to check for wear and damage. This is especially important right after winter, since repeated freezing and thawing can significantly damage wooden beams and concrete. Ropes, bolts, carabiners, and other connective or moving parts on swings and other equipment are also prone to wear over time, and need to be monitored.
Trampolines are inherently dangerous even when they’re in good condition because of the risk of awkward landings. If you do have a trampoline in spite of this, inspect it regularly to ensure that the springs aren’t corroding, and that the mat and jumping surface are undamaged.
Manage Your Line of Sight
Most significant injuries aren’t going to occur while your kids are using toys and equipment as it’s meant to be used. Children love to experiment, and it’s reasonable to assume that they’ll always find the most creative and dangerous way to use whatever is available to them. Because of that, it’s absolutely critical to supervise your kids when they’re playing outside.
To do that without constantly following them around and interfering, you’ll need to ensure that you can keep an eye on the entire yard. Make sure that trees are properly trimmed, remove landscaping features that block your view, and make sure that more dangerous equipment like trampolines are located near your main vantage point.
You can’t protect your kids from every scratch, but you can turn your backyard into a safe, kid-friendly environment that doesn’t get in the way of their fun. Swinging Monkey Products is committed to providing your family with the safety swings on the market.