With today’s infatuation with technology, we are always searching for new ways to encourage kids to get outside and play. Custom or themed playgrounds are a great idea because they have all the physical benefits of a traditional playground, but they also encourage children to use their minds and engage with the equipment on a creative level. They can use these themes for pretend play and connection to others.


Imaginative play has been proven to have cognitive and social benefits including an improvement in children’s language, creativity, interactions between other children, and an understanding of the world around them. Studies have even concluded that children can experience an increase in their concentration abilities if they spend more time in imaginative play. Creating a themed playground is one way to bring out these benefits.


Choosing a theme can be a great way to get the community involved by asking for their input and what they would like to see for the new playground. This can result in a more meaningful playground, especially if it has a tie to local culture or history. It can also establish a relationship between the decision makers and the users, encouraging the community to use it more frequently.


Designing a custom or themed playground can be a fun and creative process. There are numerous options to choose from -- everything from predesigned structures to the ability to create custom made pieces of equipment. Some examples of themed playgrounds include castles, space stations and fairy tale settings. Other options to consider are transportation themes like trucks, buses, or ships. Nature themed playgrounds also inspire kids as well as blending in with the surrounding area. Themes can be further enhanced by using unitary surfacing to create water, paths, or other added design elements.


When determining a theme for your playground, be sure to consider what would interest children the most and create an imaginative space that facilitates a variety of activities and movement. When designing something custom, it is important to work with a company that has great partnerships with their manufacturers and experience in the project management of playgrounds. This will help bring all the important design details together.


The upfront thought put into a custom or themed playground will set it apart from other play spaces and keep kids engaged, physically and cognitively, for years to come.