Different Types of Playground Equipment

Different Types of Playground Equipment

There are a lot of different pieces of playground equipment out there. Many of them feature plastic structures, surfaces and coatings to comply with safety standards and requirements.

Spinners like merry-go-rounds, teeter-totters and monkey bars are great for building upper body strength while challenging kids to keep balance. Activity panels promote creativity and problem solving by having kids work through puzzles or mazes.


Climbers, including freestanding and connected structures like walls and net climbers, help children build upper body strength as well as core and balance. They also learn to navigate tricky equipment and challenge themselves in a fun and rewarding way.

Monkey bars are another playground favorite that encourages problem-solving and evaluation of risk. The difficulty level varies, so kids can progress from just having their feet off the ground to swinging around and supporting their entire body weight on the bars as they become more confident.

Spiral climbers are a newer variation on the ladder theme Playground Equipment that brings rock climbing to the playground, and helps kids build lower-body and core strength while they work on their coordination and agility. Spiral climbers are also a great way to introduce toddlers to the idea of climbing.

Spring riders, ranging from single-seater options like the Bulldozer spring rider to multi-rider sets for up to four kids, provide a classic playground element that builds endurance and coordination in an exciting way. Kids love the chance to spin and get dizzy, which helps their vestibular system — a group of tiny cavities in the inner ears that is involved in motor skills and physical orientation.

Spring Riders

Children can develop balance and coordination while rocking back and forth on these fun, spring-loaded structures that are shaped like animals or vehicles. They can also use their imagination to go where they’re imagining as they sit on the rider, building their creative thinking skills.

The bouncing motion of these play structures is stimulating to the vestibular system, which is responsible for spatial awareness and body movement. They encourage a child’s gross motor development by requiring them to work their legs and core muscles to stay on the rider, which is a skill that they can continue to develop through other physical activities such as walking or running.

Children can also practice their social skills as they take turns riding on the same piece of equipment or use the two-person version to have a friend join them on their journey. With options including a bee, a duck and even a frog, kids can have a blast on this playground classic. These spring riders are designed with rotomolded plastic for smooth, safe play. Choosing a spring rider that is based on a favorite animal or vehicle helps to spark a child’s creativity and imagination.


Kids love to crawl through tunnels, and these structures add a unique touch to any playground. They can be used at different heights, depending on the age group; a highly elevated tube is often best for elementary students, while a lower one works well for toddlers.

Crawl-through tunnels provide a sense of enclosure and mystery that sparks children’s imaginations and encourages their curiosity. They can also be paired with other equipment to create a fun challenge for youngsters. For example, kids can crawl indoor playground equipment manufacturers through a tunnel and then slide down a ramp to feel the exhilarating rush of racing down the slide.

Playground tubes are made from durable materials to ensure longevity and safety. Plastic, including high-density polyethylene (HDPE), is a popular choice due to its strength and resistance to environmental stressors. Metal is also an excellent material for outdoor play structures, with galvanized steel being a particularly popular option. This material is rust-resistant, safeguarding the structure of playground equipment and reducing the risk of scrapes and injuries during play. Fiberglass is another favored material, praised for its smooth surfaces that reduce the chances of injury.

Jungle Gyms

A jungle gym (known as a climbing frame in British English) is an outdoor play structure on which kids can climb, hang, sit, and–in some configurations–slide. Some models also have monkey bars, where kids swing from evenly spaced horizontal bars.

Children who play on jungle gyms engage in imaginative play, which is a vital part of cognitive development. They might imagine that their jungle gym is a pirate ship sailing the rough seas, a castle, or a secret hideout. In addition, the physical activities that they perform on a jungle gym improve their strength and balance.

Adding additional elements to the jungle gym can make it even more fun, such as a slide or a ball pit. A goal net can also be added to a jungle gym to help kids practice aiming skills, and a fabric roof provides protection in case the weather gets chilly.

For safety, it’s important to choose a jungle gym that is made with high-quality materials. Look for plastic that is resistant to acids and bases, as well as UV radiation.


The merry-go-round is an exciting playground structure that encourages cooperative play. It helps children develop their coordination and balance skills. The merry-go-round also helps them build muscle strength and endurance.

Children often run around the merry-go-round to start it spinning, then jump on to enjoy the ride. Some merry-go-rounds blend this idea with bicycle mechanisms, giving kids the chance to pedal and make themselves spin around.

While most of us know that merry-go-rounds are fun and exhilarating, few of us realize how beneficial this equipment is to children’s cognitive development. The constant movement of the merry-go-round stimulates a variety of sensory input and enhances visual tracking skills, which are important for reading.

Our merry-go-rounds are made from durable and safe steel and come in several diameter options to fit your playground’s needs. They are designed to meet CPSC safety guidelines and include a governor to slow the speed of rotation. They are also painted using a state-of-the-art powder coating process and include grease fittings for maintenance. These units are a great addition to any playground.

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