Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Simple playthings

Simple playthings such as balls, jump ropes, hula hoops and riding toys, do more for encouraging physical activity than swings, jungle gyms and other “stationary” or “fixed” playground equipment, according to a recent report in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
The findings are important because they show that schools and day-care centers don’t need expensive playground equipment to keep kids active. The data was collected by researchers from the University Of North Carolina School Of Public Health.
Low cost playgroundsAn important barrier to overcoming the inclination to buy expensive structures may be due to the mindset that the word playground automatically forms a picture of a play structure. However, the North Carolina research reminds us that expensive structures ($50,000-$150,000 each) are not necessary expenditures if your intent is to get kids moving.
Surprisingly, stationary equipment, such as climbing structures, swings and balance beams, were associated with lower-intensity physical activity, researchers said, but are beneficial to other aspects of child development, such as motor and social skills. link