Friday, December 4, 2009

Choosing the right ADA playground equipment

Choosing the right ADA playground equipment
All children love to play on the playground regardless of ability. Unfortunately, much of the existing commercial playground equipment in our parks and at schools is not handicap accessible. This lack of accessible playground equipment creates a separation between kids with and without disabilities.
In order to encourage all children to play together on the playground certain playground features should be added where possible
• Playground site access – make sure there is a sidewalk leading up the playground area
Playground Surfacing - use a certified playground safety surface per ASTM F1951 for accessibility
• Ramps - wheel chair ramps for access to the playground equipment
• Railings – where necessary install railings for assistance
Swings – playground equipment manufacturers have custom seats for those with physical disabilities
• Ground Level Play – Play panels, sandboxes, ADA sand diggers, upper body interactive devices
• Overhead ladders(monkey bars) - American Disabilities Act has a guideline for them to be 53″ high x 36″ wide x 10 feet long
• Experts – Consult your local commercial playground equipment dealer to help create designs that are specific to your park or school
By creating a universal playground environment that is conducive to play by kids with all abilities we can assist in reducing the barriers of all children having fun on the playground. In the end it is all about the FUN!

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