Rope Based Play, Bespoke Playspace, and Preventing Project Failure

Fall 2016

Boy Climbing Rope Based Playstructure

Hello again to all our loyal readers and welcome newcomers to our magazine Play and playgrounds. After a long hot summer season it is once again time for leaves to change colors and begin to fall from the trees. Students have returned to school for the new school year and Fall begins. We proudly present to you our 2016 Fall issue of Play and Playground Magazine.

This season we are focusing on playground Equipment and trends new and old.  I’ve compiled a small, yet broad spectrum of articles related to the fundamentals of play and playgrounds from some of the most knowledgeable pros in the industry. Equipment is an important focus in a park or playground, whether it's traditional, theme oriented or even bespoke play design. Proper and safe equipment is key to having lifelong memories during any playtime experience. The possibilities of park or playground design when properly equipped are unbelievable and go far beyond your parent's school playground from years past.  

This issue is interesting to me for its historical references, which show how old equipment trends are rediscovered and improved on through new technology that greatly improves safe play time for our loved ones. The technology of today helps improve not just safety but also the aesthetics with greatly enhanced, environmentally sound, high activity resistant materials. This season you will find out which trends are popular and their connections with times past. Some things have not changed, with a growing trend of adventure style playgrounds utilizing age old equipment made of wood and rope. We hope to bring the perspective of play throughout history, as a reminder of what is important today.  t and old trends, improved upon, will remind you of why you loved play time when you were young.

As we reflect on the summer, we hope to entice some ideas for playgrounds and playspaces in your neck of the woods. Lastly, here at Play and Playground Magazine, we urge you to be safe, play hard, have fun, make great memories.

In This Issue...

Children playing on rope based equipment
By: Lukas Steinke
Movement is fascinating for children. It is always exciting and engaging to bounce, jump, spin, swing or see-saw.  This is the reason children – and even adults –  have so much fun on rope-based play equipment. Rope is not dead material. Instead it is flexible and enables a child to ‘connect’ with...
Bespoke Playground
By: Jay Beckwith
Most people think that art is something that sits on a pedestal or hangs on a wall and, up until recent history, that was largely true. Art before the 18th century was generally devoted to commemorating significant people, battles or ideals. Personal expression by artists was essentially unheard of...
By: Rolf Huber
Playground projects fail when the products within the playground fail, costing owners thousands of dollars they do not have.  They are then faced with the hard choices of finding the money for replacement or running the risk of having an injury and inevitable lawsuit or an ADA complaint. The usual...
By: Raymond Wills
Playgrounds must provide a safe environment where each child can grow in confidence, self-esteem, and abilities.  History tells us that children have always played from time immemorial in ancient Greek, Renaissance, and Biblical cultures. These are well documented: "And the streets were full of...
Playground Surfacing Maintenance
By: Thomas Siebert
Remember getting sunburned and vowing to apply a layer of sunscreen before you go out in the sun the next time?  Sunscreens help protect you from the sun’s harmful UV rays while it moisturizes and conditions the skin. In a way, poured in place surfacing has some of the same protection needs. Like...
By: Michael Laris
Unstructured, outdoor play is a form of exercise that doesn’t take much effort for kids. Play is second-nature and often children’s favorite activity. Playing outside allows children to explore their environment, learn about nature, foster fine and gross motor skills, and develop strength and...