We all know that playtime is invaluable for children’s development for many reasons, but slides in particular are highly valuable for kids.
Broadly speaking, the benefits of a child playing on slides can be broken into two categories: emotional and physical.
How Slides Help with Children’s Development
Although it may seem farfetched that a humble slide can help children develop emotionally, the context around and experience of using the slide are full of lessons for a child.
The first and arguably the most important is that to use the slide your child will need to interact with other children. From learning to wait their turn before climbing up the ladder to waiting at the top and making sure other children are clear from the bottom, learning to work with others is part of the process. This encourages your child to learn how to share, take turns and develop their patience with others. Learning these skills from a young age has a positive impact on their development for years to come as they continue to develop. And the best part is – they have no idea it’s happening!
Another emotional development benefit of your child playing on a slide is they learn important lessons about fear and being brave. Successfully climbing up the slide, riding down the chute and walking away unscathed is a great confidence booster for your child. As well as this, once they have learnt how to succeed, their desire to explore develops too.
The physical benefits of using a slide for children are also far-reaching. The effort of climbing up the ladder helps them develop strength in their arms and legs, needing to wait on the ladder or at the top fosters coordination, balance and spatial orientation. These can all occur simultaneously as they get used to new contexts and navigating them with others around them. Spatial orientation is also developed as children reach the bottom of the slide and decide how to land.
Using a Slide Safely
Although slides can have significant benefits for children’s development, it is important they use them safely. A slide that is appropriate for a child in primary school may not be appropriate for a toddler that is still developing. Factors that can influence how safe a slide is for age groups are the incline of the chute, and how many spirals or turns there are.
How to Pick the Perfect Slide
At Playground Centre, we have a range of slides to suit any age range.
Toddlers and Preschoolers
For toddlers and preschoolers, we recommend slides that are shorter and straighter. Not only does this give them a clear path so they can anticipate how to go down the slide and stop themselves, but not having any rounded corners reduces the risk of injury if they lose their balance going down the slide. View our range of slides for toddlers and preschoolers here!
Primary School Kids
For primary school-aged and older kids, we have a range of slides that are tailored to their more daredevil nature and presents a more exciting slide. As children get older, their balance and coordination improve, but they also know what to expect from a slide. For those reasons, having longer chutes, enclosed elements and twists are not only safe but highly enjoyable for these kids. If you’re looking for slides tailored to primary school-aged kids, you can view our range here.
Teenagers, Young Adults (and the Young at Heart)
For teenagers, young adults, or anyone that is young at heart don’t fret – we have a range of slides for you too! Our tube and chute slides, along with our custom stainless-steel slides are perfect for older age groups still looking for the thrill of a trip down the slide. With longer chutes, spirals and waves, these slides are the perfect opportunity to feel like a kid again. View our range of teenagers and older slides here.
All of our products are built to withstand New Zealand and Australian weather conditions and are suitable for international climates too. They are extremely durable and are guaranteed to provide your playground with an exciting and popular choice. View our full range of slides, or take a look at some of our recent community projects to get some inspiration.
If you have questions for us, please don’t hesitate to contact us!