There’s just something about a playground. Whether it’s the swings, the heights or the feeling of freedom and accomplishment, playgrounds often hold a special place in our hearts.
The playground plays many different roles depending on your age. As a child, the playground serves as a place to play and meet friends. For parents, it serves as a place to take your child for physical activity in hopes that they sleep well at night. For elderly, not only does a playground provide a place to take grandchildren, but it is also a great place for them to increase their health. Yes, you read that right, playgrounds are good for the elderly.
In fact, playgrounds designed specifically for the elderly are becoming increasingly more popular around the world. According to an article on the website Upworthy.com, Spain was the first country to design playgrounds specifically for their aging population. The United States was quick to follow suit, and there are now over 50 playgrounds nationwide that were built with multiple generations in mind.
From increased health to the opportunity to get out of the house and socialize, senior playgrounds provide many benefits. Perhaps one of the best hidden advantages of senior playgrounds is that they provide seniors with a fun way to enhance their balance.
If you have been following our blog, you probably already know that falls and fall-related injuries pose many health risks for our elderly loved ones. The National Council on Aging reports that over 1/3 of senior citizens fall each year. These falls result in more than 2.5 million injuries and 21,700 deaths annually. While this number is large, with preventative measures and balance exercises it can be lowered.
If your elderly loved one’s city is not host to an elderly playground don’t worry. There are plenty of elderly balance exercises your loved one can do at home to lower their risk of experiencing a fall or fall-related injury. These exercises include:
- Tai Chi
- Leg Exercises
- Chair Exercises
For added comfort, safety, balance and peace of mind, we also recommend using SmartCells Fall Protection mats or flooring.
The dual-stiffness structure of SmartCells fall protection products provides users with a stable standing surface that will not cause a balance impaired person to lose their balance, while at the same time providing 5-7 times more cushioning than a foam mat of the same height. In addition, SmartCells cannot absorb liquid, so infection control issues can be more effectively dealt with, too.
SmartCells Fall Protection products are available to be used as an underlayment or in a variety of colors (Black, Light Brown, and Grey) and additional configurations ranging from build-your-own mats and custom flooring to pre-sized mats (2×3, 3×5 and 24×68).
SmartCells Fall Protection products: We’ll be there when you can’t be.