Playing with friends, freely and creatively, is an essential part of childhood. Every child deserves the space and opportunity to play alongside their friends at the playground, no matter their ability. Unfortunately, some older playgrounds and outdoor spaces might not have all the inclusive design elements needed. The good news is, there are so many ways to imbed inclusive design elements into an already-established park. Retrofitting, or repairing an existing playground, is a great way to modernize a structure and increase safety and accessibility. 

We’re here to help! In this blog, we will equip you with the tools you need to add inclusive play design into an already existing playground.

 

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Evaluate Your Current Playground

The first step to retrofitting your existing playground is to evaluate its current state. How old is your playground? Depending on your playground’s age, you may need to ensure the equipment is up to current standards. Click here to read our blog detailing the ADA guidelines, including a checklist of the requirements that your playground must have to be accessible. Evaluating the playground and play area is a necessary initial step to ensuring your playground has the framework for an inclusive play design. Contact your local representative to replace any parts of your playground that seem unsafe.

Once you ensure your playground meets safety standards, you can evaluate your range of existing play events. How much play value exists in your outdoor space? Ramps and transfer systems are a necessity; adding ground-level events and sensory panels is an extraordinary way to go beyond the necessities. 

 

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Add Sensory-Rich Components

Imbedding sensory panels and creative play events into an already-established park is a great way to meet everyone’s needs and create a rich inclusive play design. Sensory play engages the five senses, regulating sensory systems in the body that help kids coordinate movement and behavior. We can help imbed sensory play and transform your playground with sensory panels, of which we have over a dozen choices for auditory, visual, and tactile play. Our Sensory Wave Climber is equipped with molded-in grips, hand holds, and a transfer area to provide support for all abilities as kids maneuver through the climber.

This is a great affordable option if you’re transforming your park on a budget. Replacing outdated panels with new sensory activities is made easy with our direct bolt technology. Reach out to your local representative to discuss your options for panel replacements.

 

Add Free-Standing Ground-Level Events

In addition to sensory panels, imbedding ground-level and/or free-standing play events is an excellent decision that ensures there is plenty of accessible equipment for children of all ages and abilities. Imbedding multiple free-standing events into your playground re-design allows children to have a variety of play choices. Ground-level play events are incredibly important for multigenerational play and accessibility. We have so many options for free-standing pieces!

 

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The Inclusive Whirl is the industry’s first “roll-on” whirl that features bench seating and a zero-entry design. Another option is the RoxAll See Saw – equipped with a center saucer designed for users to transfer easily to and from a mobility device. There are so many options to flip through in our 2021 catalog – check out page 157 to begin viewing all of our free-standing play options!

 

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Our team is ready to help you add inclusive play design to your already existing playground! There are so many different ways to imbed inclusive play value, while simultaneously modernizing and improving your playground’s safety. Reach out today to get started re-designing your current park to be inclusive!