The installation of shade structures extends playtime for children by making the playground a safer place. While playground shade is not required by U.S. regulations, it is highly recommended by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, the National Program for Playground Safety, and many other national organizations dedicated to making playgrounds safe outlets for children to learn, grow and develop.

There are many benefits of investing in playground shade. Here are our top three reasons:

  1. Playground shade reduces exposure to UV rays.
  2. Playground shade lowers air temperature of covered areas.
  3. Playground shade reduces surface temperatures of playground equipment and safety flooring.

Reduces Sun Exposure

One of the biggest safety factors to consider on the playground is children’s exposure to UV rays. The more sunburns experienced early in life, the higher the chance of developing a form of skin cancer later on. By investing in a shade structure and/or strategically installing equipment under natural shade trees, children can play safely outside for extended periods of time. Longer outdoor playtimes are associated with better academic achievement, reduced stress levels and improved overall health in children.

Lowers Air Temperature

In addition to reducing sun exposure, playground shade also lowers the air temperature in covered areas. This is significant, particularly in the summer months of areas known for notoriously high temperatures. Not only does this help children play more comfortably for longer periods of time, it also greatly reduces the risk of overheating and heat exhaustion in children.

Reduces Surface Temperatures

Last but not least, the installation of playground shade reduces the surface temperature of both playground equipment and safety flooring below and around the equipment. Even on cooler days, surfaces absorb great amounts of heat from the sun.

Local CBS News staff measured playground equipment that was completely exposed to the sun at a park in Cathedral City, California. Both playground equipment and playground flooring measured a whopping 161F to 180F degrees! This is significantly higher than what is considered to be safe. OSHA safety guidelines for workers, for example, indicate 140 degrees as the maximum surface temperature. When shade is placed over equipment and flooring, temperatures are reduced to levels that are safe for children.

Keep children safe, equipment cool and air temperatures down with shade sails, umbrella shades and other custom shade structures. We offer a wide variety of shade for all your recreational needs. Explore our selection today!