It’s no surprise that kids are spending too much time in front of a screen and not enough time playing.
Did you know that the average child spends less than 30 minutes playing outside and over 7 hours in front of a screen? It’s important that our children create electronic literacy, but it is even more important for them to learn how to play!
There are so many physical, mental, emotional, and social benefits to playing in an indoor playground.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that kids spend at least 1 hour in unstructured play and 30 minutes to 1 hour in structured play every single day. This has been proven to reduce stress and anxiety in children from their over-scheduled lives. Going to a playground or a play park can help accomplish this goal!
Indoor playgrounds can assist in your child’s physical development by challenging their cognitive skills, problem-solving ability, discovery skills, creativity, and dexterity.
Play parks have been proven to improve their fine motor, gross motor skills, and their overall health.
One in three children in America are obese, causing life-long health implications and complications. Ensuring your child is getting enough play time can decrease this risk and increase their overall muscle development and improve their quality of sleep.
Some examples of activities that play parks use to enhance child development are:
Swinging develops balance and speed awareness, fine motor skills through gripping the chain, gross motor skills through pumping their legs, and coordination as they bring all these movements together.
Climbing develops body awareness, directional awareness, problem-solving and predictive/flexible thinking skills.
Overhead equipment develops fine motor skills through gripping the handlebars, gross motor skills through swinging, and spatial awareness by recognizing where they are in relation to the next handlebar.
Ball games, like basketball, kickball, or four-square, teach children to hold onto, manipulate, throw, and kick the ball. This builds hand-eye coordination skills, decision-making abilities, and strategy building skills.
Play parks have also been proven to enhance your child’s mental and emotional development.
Playing in both structured and unstructured settings has increased benefits on their academic ability, brain development, attention spans, leadership skills, and communication skills.
Playing in an indoor playground with other kids can oftentimes be unpredictable. This develops the very important skill of limiting labels and preconceived ideas. This allows children to come to most situations with openness and flexibility!
Play parks allow kids to use all 5 senses, build self-esteem, create independence, and experience a wide range of emotions.
Free play is good for emotional and social development because it encourages communication with other kids, following rules, sharing, taking turns and awareness of social clues, body language, and tone of voice.
It can also develop persistence and endurance in children to keep trying when they don’t do something perfectly on the first try.
Socially, indoor playgrounds develop interaction with others, solo play, inclusive play, and the ability to listen and collaborate. It encourages creativity and imagination with others and can help promote the development of many relational skills your child needs.
Indoor playgrounds have consistently proven to develop physical, mental, emotional, and social skills in children. Throughout this article we have emphasized how important each of these are, however, going to a play park is just simply fun for your kids! Apart from all the benefits, it is a boost in your child’s day to get to come to a place like Arrows Active Play Park. It is a fun, easy way to connect with your child and to give them a day they will never forget!