The Benefits of Shade Structures for Playgrounds

shaded playground area
If you have children, you already know just how much they love to go to the playground. Being outside with friends or siblings climbing around on an exciting oversized toy is easily the highlight of the day for many kids. Of course, as an adult, it is your job to make sure the kids stay safe while they are having fun. In the warm summer months, that means protecting them from the hot sun while they are outside – which is where a shade structure in a playground can come in handy.

UV rays can be damaging to anyone, but they are particularly dangerous when it comes to kids. Sunscreen is a good first step, but that alone might not be enough for a long play session on a sunny day. Shade structures are a great option because they provide a physical barrier between the sun and the children, meaning that they can enjoy protection even after the sunscreen has worn off. Fortunately, shade structures are readily available, easy to install, and relatively affordable. They can be of use in just about any climate, but are particularly important in warm areas where sunny days are a common occurrence.

Longer Play Sessions

As a responsible parent, you may have to decide to take your children home from the play area prematurely if no shade is available. Of course, this is a choice that isn’t likely to go over well with the kids, but you have to do what is necessary to keep your children safe. With a shade structure overhead, however, that choice may not have to be made. You should be able to let the kids play longer when protected by shade, meaning everyone is happier in the end.

Not Just the Rays

Yes, shade structures are great for blocking out UV rays, but they offer more than just protection from harmful rays when it comes to kid safety. As another benefit, a good shade structure will keep the playground equipment cooler than it would be otherwise, meaning there is less risk of children burning themselves on hot metal. Playground equipment can get extremely hot after sitting out in the sun all day, and children may not understand that they need to be careful around metal on a hot day. By covering the playground in shade, the metal pieces are unlikely to reach a high temperature, meaning playtime can continue without painful burns.

Every neighborhood park should offer a safe and enjoyable playground for children to enjoy with their friends. The benefits of spending time outside being physically active are well documented, and the excitement on the kids faces is easy to see while they are playing. With a shade structure covering the main part of the playground, you can enjoy the experience as an adult, knowing that your kids are protected properly from the heat and damaging rays of the sun. While adding a shade structure to a playground will come along with some degree of financial cost, that cost will be well worth it in the end when the kids can safely enjoy the playground throughout the summer.