Last Updated Dec 7, 2010 · Written by Jaclyn Fitzgerald
While a tyre swing (a tyre tied to a branch by rope) may have been great for you as a child, today's safety standards mean that homemade playground equipment like this is not recommended. This is because you don't know what the branch is able to take weight-wise, and children could fall or be hit by the branch. The good news is that there are plenty of types of pre-made play equipment that will keep your kids happy for hours.
What type of play equipment you get will largely be dictated by how much space you have available in your front or back yard. If you have some room to play with, things such as forts, cubby houses, monkey bars, and swings are absolutely perfect. For even more fun for the kiddies, add in some slides, rope ladders, or bridges to connect different play structures. These types of play equipment can be made to suit your needs or even custom made but be aware that it will still have to meet Australian standards.
If you've got a smaller area, you can still install some great play equipment. There are cubby houses that can fit into areas as little as 2 metres square. For really small spaces such as courtyards, a sandpit is ideal. Just make sure that it can be covered for hygiene reasons (cats find sandpits very attractive and will sometimes use them as a toilet).
Asking a play equipment professional can pay off hugely as they will be able to look at your front or back yard and recommend pieces of equipment to suit. They will also look at things such as the child's personality so you end up with equipment that your kids will use for a long time, instead of quickly losing its novelty.
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