On a hot day, we all know that playgrounds are a terrific place to spend an hour or more with the kids.
The apparent benefits of taking your children to the park include getting their bodies moving and avoiding the cry of “I’m bored,” but there may be even more benefits to your child playing on a community playground than you realize.
why Playing At The Playground Is So Important
Improves Self Esteem
Playgrounds present numerous obstacles to children. Ladders, monkey bars, and sliding poles all demand new abilities that a child can practise until they accomplish.
Conquering these challenges instils confidence that can spill over into other aspects of their lives: “If I can do the monkey bars, I can absolutely learn to tie my shoes or answer this arithmetic problem.”
Helps Strengthen Social Skills
Whether you arrange to meet pals at the playground or run into some children who are already there, parks allow your child to socialise in a manner that they do not in other settings.
Playgrounds are ideal for unstructured play, including the creation of one’s own games. This teaches kids to listen effectively, to negotiate and compromise, to follow rules, to take turns, and to collaborate.
Helps With Critical thinking
On a playground, things don’t always go as planned. Running into unexpected scenarios assures that your child will employ their problem-solving skills.
What do you do when the steering wheel won’t spin properly? When you’re not tall enough to reach the monkey bars, how do you go up? How can you increase the height of your swing by pumping your legs?
Good For The Immune system
We don’t like to think about it, but playgrounds are actually germ and virus breeding grounds. We all want to protect our children from every cough and cold, but we know it is not a good idea. Exposure to pathogens (in moderation) helps kids build immunity and hence become healthier over time.
There are numerous overall health benefits to playing outside in general. Physical activity has undeniable health benefits for children’s cardiovascular and musculoskeletal systems.
improves Gross and Fine Motor Skills
Outside play allows your children to move their bodies in ways that they cannot do indoors can improve gross and fine motor skills. Balancing, climbing, digging, swinging, crawling, and running are all activities that every child engages in on a playground, and each one teaches children how to coordinate the various parts of their bodies.
Many park attractions necessitate fine motor abilities such as grabbing, stability, and postural control. Tic-Tac-Toe boards, mazes, abacus, and alphabet or number puzzles are becoming increasingly popular as specific activity features that encourage a variety of fine motor abilities.
Helps The Imagination Grow
If you’ve ever spent any time near a play structure, you’ll quickly realise that not everything is as it appears. A ladder is rarely just a ladder; it can be a mountain, a rocket ship, or even a giraffe. More frequently than not, slides are elephant trunks, rollercoasters, or rainbows.
Simply walking onto a playground can (and will!) turn your child into a pirate, astronaut, or princess. So let that imagination soar!
Exercises Leadership Skills
When watching children in an unorganised play scenario, it is typically clear who the pack leader is. In most cases, one child explains the rules of the game and instructs the other children on where they should be and what they should be doing.
This is crucial for both the leader and the other children since we all need to lead and follow at different times and in different situations in life.
Helps With Sleep
This is hardly a surprise. Children who have had the opportunity to play outside and move their bodies sleep better and are thus more rested. Playing in playgrounds has been found in studies to enhance children’s endorphin production, which in turn increases melatonin and leads in a better night’s sleep.
Children who are anxious or frustrated can benefit from free play on equipment. Aside from the fact that moving your body outside releases endorphins (the “feel-good hormone”), simply being outside is naturally comforting for children.
Exposure to Vitamin D (from the sun) may potentially play a role in reducing stress.
Allowing your children to play on playgrounds (and taking the time to accompany them) teaches them the skills they will need to become happy, healthy, and successful adults. Playing at a playground helps them develop creativity and imagination, critical thinking and problem-solving skills, and even the ability to form good relationships with others, in addition to a long list of physical benefits.
So, the next time your children ask, “Can we go to the park?” say yes!