Designing the perfect playground means making many decisions on the safety, quality, and benefits of the various types of equipment that will be included. The ultimate choice of what to include will come down to practicality, space, and budget. As well as items like climbing frames and trim trails, you should also consider the quality, style, and safety of the surface that is included. Not only is this a great way to incorporate games that encourage mental development but different playground surfaces offer differing levels of safety for different occasions.
Rubber is a popular surface material for playgrounds because it is considerably softer than alternative materials like concrete and asphalt. Serious injuries will usually be avoided and there is a good selection of colours that can give your playground a touch of individuality and even some school branding. Typically, the surface will be made from recycled rubber materials too.
The more expensive alternative to rubber fibres is a rubber tarmac style material. This is literally poured into place and once the rubber sets it creates a safe and even attractive play surface. The surface can be customised so that it includes school insignia, a motto, or games and activities to help further improve the experience enjoyed by the children that use it regularly while also encouraging greater and more rounded development.
Play turf is an alternative to traditional grass that comes close to mimicking the benefits of the natural turf surface without any of the pitfalls. It is soft and comfortable to play on and even roll around on but it does not wear under heavy traffic and it will reduce injuries when compared to harder surfaces, or even compacted soil.
One of the safest options is effectively an outdoor carpet. This material potentially offers the safest experience and is especially well suited to younger children that may roll and crawl around as well as fall over more often. It is designed to withstand the elements and continue to provide attractive and effective flooring for use in children’s playgrounds regardless of the level of traffic or the type of play and play equipment that will take place on the playground.