How do You Ensure Children's Safety in a Playground?
To ensure children’s safety in a playground, it is recommended to install rubber playground surfaces to help cushion the ground around the play equipment and provide a non-slip surface for children to run safely on. According to the United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention, each year, more than 200,000 children ages 14 and younger are treated in emergency rooms for injuries involving playgrounds. Rubber-Cal recognizes this need for safety and offers an excellent line of rubber safety surfacing for playgrounds. It is crucial to have rubber playground mats in place because of their protective shock absorbing and comfort qualities they provide for those playing or standing on them. Rubber play floor tiles offer an easy-to-install safety solution to keeping children safe on the playground.
What is the Best Surface for a Playground?
Rubber playground matting is the best surface for a playground because it is a safe, non-slip surface to traverse or land on while being durable enough to withstand harsh outdoor conditions. Most importantly, rubber provides a cushioned surface to land on in case of an accidental tumble or a fall off playground equipment. It also provides a non-slip and moisture-resistant surface for children to run on without the worry of slipping and falling even when moisture is present on the surface. Additionally, since playground surfaces are generally outdoors, recycled rubber is the ideal material for playground matting because it is made from repurposed vehicle tires which are designed to last in highly abrasive conditions for years. These rubber playground mats exhibit a superior degree of resistance to UV rays, ozone and moisture thanks to the tire rubber they derived from.
Benefits of Rubber Playground Mats
Safety surfacing for playgrounds made of rubber is the ideal surfacing option many choose when searching for the perfect playground matting for their young ones to play safely on due to its ability to provide shock absorption, traction and cushioning. Playground matting offers physical properties that allows it to provide shock absorption, traction and comfort for anyone playing or walking on its surface. The qualities that naturally come with rubber provide excellent anti-slip qualities to help minimize chances of slip and fall accidents when children are playing on rubber playground mats while providing a safe and comfortable surface to fall on.
1(a). Playground Safety
Safety is the primary and most important reason for installing rubber playground mats because children can be reckless and a fall on hard surfaces may increase the chances of serious injury. According to the U.S. Consumer Product and Safety Commission, “The surfacing under and around playground equipment is one of the most important factors in reducing the likelihood of life-threatening head injuries” (cpsc.gov). Therefore, it is important to install safety surfacing for playgrounds that provide a soft landing surface to avoid such injuries. As mentioned above, rubber is the best material for playground matting due to its soft and supple nature. Rubber is able to provide this protection because it is a natural elastomer with a low compression set meaning, it is softer and able to return back to its original shape after being under pressure or heavy weights. This gives rubber playground surfaces the buoyancy it needs to offer a cushioned surface to avoid serious injury in children.
1(b). Shock Absorption
A fall onto rubber’s shock absorbent surface is less likely to cause serious injury than a fall onto a hard surface and, because children are likely to take a tumble at some point while playing, it is important that shock absorption is a primary feature of playground surfaces. Rubber’s natural low compression set gives rubber a “bounce” which provides a cushioned landing surface. Play floor tiles can have a thicker gauge to help aid in shock absorption. Additionally, some rubber playground mats also have special waffle patterns on their underside to help boost their ability to flex under pressure. Certain safety surfacing for playgrounds have also been tested for their impact attenuation, a measure of a playground surface’s shock absorbing properties, and will offer approved shock absorbing characteristics.
Rubber naturally processes a high coefficient of friction which allows it to retain its traction abilities even when moisture is present. Safety surfacing for playgrounds made of rubber will provide excellent traction even when moisture is present creating a non-slip surface for children to run safely on. These qualities are extremely important for playground surfaces because they are usually located outdoors where precipitation can cause the ground to become slippery. Furthermore, the recycled rubber variation these playground surfaces are made of offers a rough surface texture to enhance rubber’s natural gripping ability.
Rubber playground surfaces are far superior to hard surface alternatives not only due to their safety qualities, but also due to the enhanced cushioning provided by its natural elasticity. Children may be full of energy but even they can feel fatigued which is why rubber playground surfaces are designed to be comfortable for ankles, leg joints and lower back region. Some play floor tiles are thick and soft enough to provide a degree of bounce reducing the likelihood of pressure affecting the feet while standing on these elastic surfaces. Though kids are generally limber and full of energy, they can still suffer from pains in the course of clambering over and playing on uncomfortable materials or structures. This is why providing the most comfortable playground matting material is critical to us which, in turn, makes the anti-fatigue capabilities of our rubber playground mats hard to beat.
How Do You Install Playground Matting?
Playground matting is installed by using plastic connector pins that fit into the holes lining the sides of the play floor tiles that allow them to connect to other tiles without the use of adhesives. Most of our safety surfacing for playgrounds come in the form of tile mats and their no-adhesive installation has made them very popular. With these connector pins, there is no need for extra adhesives; however, if you would like a permanent installation, you may use a polyurethane based glue to adhere your play floor tiles to the existing playground surfaces. This method of installation is ideal for heavily used playgrounds as it will provide an extra level of assurance that the tiles will stay in place. You can also install rubber playground surfaces on top of most other surfaces, such as grass or dirt, to create a new and level surface made up of play floor tiles. This type of modular flooring is a great alternative to rolled flooring because it allows for a greater degree of design mobility.
Injuries resulting from a fall on a rough or hard surface can prove to be dangerous which is why it is important to safeguard playground surfaces to help prevent children from serious injuries. Rubber is the ideal material for safety surfacing for playgrounds due to the level of protection and comfort they offer through their natural abilities. Rubber playground mats create safe playground surfaces with enhanced shock absorption, traction and comfort qualities through rubber’s natural elasticity and high coefficient of friction making the playground a safer place for children. These benefits are available in an eco-friendly and easy to install form that will save you both time and money!