“Children need and want to take risks when they play. Play provision aims to respond to these needs and wishes by offering children stimulating, challenging environments for exploring and developing their abilities.”
“Fear of litigation is leading many play providers to focus on minimising the risk of injury at the expense of other more fundamental objectives. The effect is to stop children from enjoying a healthy range of play opportunities, limiting their enjoyment and causing potentially damaging consequences for their development.”
“Playing in play provision is a comparatively low risk activity for children.”
“All children both need and want to take risks in order to explore limits, venture into new experiences and develop their capacities, from a very young age and from their earliest play experiences.”
“It is the job of all those responsible for children at play to asses and manage the level of risk, so that children are given the chance to stretch themselves, test and develop their abilities without exposing them to unacceptable risks.”
“If we do not provide controlled opportunities for children to encounter and manage risk then they may be denied the chance to learn these skills. They may also be more likely to choose to play in uncontrolled environments where the risks are greater.”
“Children have a range of physical competences and abilities, including a growing ability to assess and manage risk, which adults arguably tend to underestimate. However, children typically have less experience than adults of assessing the brand range of risk and hazards that they may encounter. So it is important to give them appropriate controlled environments in which they can learn about risk.”
… such as an adventure playground, where risk is managed and children are facilitated by trained play workers.
Want to find out more about the research into risks and hazards of a playground? Read Play Safety Forum’s Position Statement.