The essential guide to inclusive playground design

The essential guide to inclusive playground design

Discover ways to make play more accessible, more inclusive and a whole lot more fun for people of all ages and abilities, with Playground Centre’s All-Inclusive Fun Handbook.

The growing demand for inclusive playgrounds represents a crucial social shift driven by the growing recognition that everyone should be able to experience the pure joy and benefits of play, regardless of their age or ability.

The inclusive playground is by no means a new trend, but it is one that is set to endure due to the overwhelmingly positive and wide-ranging benefits for individuals, families and communities as a whole.

In Playground Centre’s All-Inclusive Fun Handbook, we combine theory and practical experience to provide Councils, landscape architects and schools with a guide to creating play spaces that cater for the needs of all users and realise the benefits of bringing them together.

That’s the key: playing together.

Best practice inclusive playground design makes interactive, friendly play more likely by enabling children with and without disabilities – and their parents and caregivers – to play on equipment together, enriching the play experience and fostering a stronger appreciation of diversity.

Most importantly, best practice inclusive playground design recognises that disability is itself diverse.

People with disabilities are a highly diverse population group with disability types spanning intellectual, sensory and speech, physical and psychological. Just one or two pieces of ‘accessible’ equipment in isolation cannot embrace such a variety of needs and therefore, a truly inclusive space considers many things. Think

accessible and all-age play equipment and pathways, passive areas, sensory and tactile play, different challenges and visual cues (just to name a few).

The All-Inclusive Fun Handbook is an essential guide to selecting inclusive play equipment. In it, we map out the different types of equipment suited to different play needs and their benefits based on a research-backed understanding of different conditions, with a special focus on autism and sensory processing issues.

All-Inclusive Fun at Memorial Park, Palmerston North

Memorial Park Playground demonstrates how the latest inter-generational, all-abilities play equipment makes play possible for every body.

The playground we planned, designed and built in partnership with Palmerston North City Council is a vibrant, poppy-themed playground that speaks to the culture and history of its location and is positively bursting with inclusive play options.

Every surface, texture, colour and space has been designed to work together and embrace inclusion. And with smooth ramps linking the various play zones it is, quite literally, ‘Access All Areas’ fun for everyone. Watch the video and read the full case study to find out more about how Memorial Park showcases inclusive playground design at its best.

Contact Playground Centre to obtain your free copy of the All-Inclusive Fun Handbook or book a Zoom discovery session to talk about how you can apply an ‘everyone can play’ philosophy to your playground project.