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  • 3 Ways to Get the Whole Family Playing Outside this Summer

    Parents are their children’s biggest role models. What better way to get your children outside and immersed in nature than to do it as a family? By making time to be outside, your children will be more likely to go outdoors, get away from their devices, and play on their own. Here’s three fun and engaging activities you can do as a family to get your children playing outside this summer.

    1. Catch Fireflies at Night

    Ahhhh, summer! One of the best things about summertime is the blissful nights that bring in those twinkly, almost magical little bugs we call fireflies or lightning bugs. On a nice summer night, corral the family to go out and watch the fireflies float around and light up. You can even get a few extra jars together and go on a lightning bug hunt. See how many fireflies the family can catch and put them in the jars with breathable tops as temporary lanterns. At the end of the night, take the tops off and set the jars out so the fireflies can fly free.

    2. Take Walks Together

    Rain or shine, getting your family outside for a nice walk can be really fun. Take this walk a step further and find a nice trail or country road to walk in the morning or evening. Recap everyone’s day by asking for a high (something good that happened) and a low (something not good that might have happened). Use this time to get closer as a family and interact together.

    If the weather seems a little gloomy, slip on your rain boots and rain jackets to jump in the puddles as you make your way around the neighborhood! The kids will love splashing in the puddles as they walk. This is even a good way for mom and dad to get a little stress-free time, too!

    3. Play Creative Games on the Playset

    Don’t forget about that fun backyard playset you have, either! Your playset can be used all year long in so many different ways.

    Have a blast swinging on the swings! Take a twist on the classic game of Hide and Seek. Swing your child, tell them to close their eyes and count to 20 as they swing. Go hide in the meantime and when they are done counting, have them come find you! This is a great game to play with children of any age.

    Help your children create childhood memories on the playset by pretending it’s a pirate ship! Have someone play the captain and steer the boat while the rest of the family plays the crew. A few other fun games you can play are Red Light Green Light, Mother May I, and Simon Says. Always remind your children how to play safe on the swing set and refresh any visitors of the rules you may have.

    Don’t let the speed of summer make your family forget what it’s like to have fun the old fashioned way! Take advantage of the extra free time your children have this summer and enjoy the outdoors with these three simple activities. In need of a swing set? Shop our selection of wooden playsets!

  • 5 Swing Set Maintenance Tips

    These days, a play set is a big investment and like any other big ticket item, it pays to protect it. Preserving your wooden swing set doesn't have to be a laborious or time intensive project. Owners who are willing to set aside one weekend each year to perform routine maintenance and upkeep will be able to retain their swing set's beauty for a long time to come. Read along to see how you can easily give the backyard play set a make-over.

    Staining and Sealing

    Staining or sealing is one of the most important components of preserving your backyard playground. To protect the unit from the elements, we recommend you stain or seal annually. Of course, you may find that it is beneficial to stain or seal more or less often, depending on the climate and weather of your location.

    The first step in staining or sealing your set is cleaning it. We like the idea of using plain old soap and water here. A power washer is of great assistance for this step. Next, remove accessories and toys, and let the swing set dry. Ideally, the cleaning could be done on a Friday night, or early Saturday. Then, on Sunday, you can finish the process: sand rough patches and apply the stain or sealer. It is important to wait another 24 hours for the stain or sealer to dry. Need more information? Explore this step by step guide to staining your swing set.

    Hardware Checks

    When it comes to checking the hardware on your children's playground set, there's simply no such thing as too often. At least once a year, or even once a season, inspect the bolts and tighten as necessary. This doesn't take much in the way of time or resources -- all you need is a wrench and an hour's time!

    Replacements and Cleaning

    Another way to keep the playground set looking brand new is regular cleaning. An annual wipe down of swings and toys should be sufficient. Replacing accessories or slides should be much more sporadic. For example, if you live in the Northeast and the past few winters have been particularly tough, a tent top canopy may need replacing after three or so years. The same goes for a sling swing. This is also an opportunity to upgrade the playground set, and incorporate a horse glider swing for two or gym-ring trapeze bar combo as a new activity.

    Update or Install a Ground Surface

    Look closely at the surface beneath the playground set. We suggest that all playsets have a thick layer of rubber mulch underneath them for additional padding and safety. Rubber mulch lasts much longer and requires less maintenance than the usual wood mulch.

    Commitment is Key

    We recommend marking a weekend on the calendar in advance so you don't forget about the upkeep of your playground set. Even if it's six months away, you'll give yourself a reminder. Once you've done the staining, tightening, and cleaning for that year, make sure that you plan ahead for the next maintenance day. We encourage you to get the whole family involved. After all, having a playground set is all about creating childhood memories. Why not making this a teaching moment for the little ones?

    Making sure that the children’s swing set is stained, the hardware is in check, and you’ve scheduled the next routine maintenance day for next year ensures that your backyard investment will be around for years to come.

  • 3 Playground Workouts for Busy Moms

    Mom working out on playsetSwing sets are not just for kids, they can be for moms too! Turn your jungle gym or swing set into a mini gym with these three full body workouts.

    For Your Arms

    If your child’s play set has a trapeze bar or gym rings, you can first focus on your upper body muscles with incline pull-ups!

    HERE’S HOW: Walk up to the hanging trapeze bar and grab the bar or the gym rings. Lean back so your body is relying on your arms to not fall to the ground. In this position, you may begin to pull yourself towards the bar and slowly release your arms back down to your original position. This exercise will work your upper back, trapezius muscles, biceps, and deltoids. We advise that you start with three sets of 10 to begin.

    PRO TIP: To increase the intensity of this workout, move your feet farther forward under the trapeze bar. To decrease the intensity of this workout, move your legs backwards to decrease the distance you must pull your body up.

    For Your Legs

    Good news! It’s time to switch the muscle groups you were just using. It’s time to do some squats.

    HERE’S HOW: Approach the swing of your swing set and turn your back to it, with the base of the swing touching the back of your legs. For this exercise, you are going to pretend as if you are going to sit in the swing, keeping your arms extended out parallel to your shoulders as you sink down. Once your toosh touches the swing, shoot back up into a standing position with slightly bent knees. Repeat this motion 20 times for 3 sets.

    PRO TIP: For a more engaged workout, twist your body as you are descending and have the elbow of one arm meet the knee on the opposite side. Switch arms each time you sink down for another squat.

    For Your Abs

    Lastly, we cannot forget the abs. Abdominal muscles are responsible for keeping our body stable and upright, which is needed to maintain good spinal health.

    HERE’S HOW: Assuming the same incline position that you were in for the pull ups, hang with a still body and lift your knee to your chest. Repeat this motion 10 times for each leg, doing three sets altogether. This exercise will engage both your upper and lower abs. Add in a variation of lifting your knee out to the side to work your oblique muscles.

    PRO TIP: Holding a single leg out, fully extended to a 30-degree angle, repeatedly and slowly raise it to a 45-degree angle. Repeat each leg 10 times each for three sets. This change up will give your upper thigh and lower abs a workout all at the same time!

    Not only do we have tips for keeping your body maintained, but we also have tips on keeping your swing set maintained! We offer great blog posts with tips on maintaining your swing set. Interested in buying a swing set of your own? Shop our online store to order your next piece of workout equipment!

  • The Benefits of Swinging for Autistic Children

    Swing sets can offer a great active alternative for children with special needs. Jumping, spinning, swinging, and rocking are motions that all work to help regulate the vestibular system in our bodies. Read why it is important for the vestibular system to be regulated and how swinging can help achieve that.

    Movement and the Vestibular System

    Every vestibular system varies from child to child. Be cautious of whether your child enjoys swinging or staying still. Your child may love to swing, jump, spin, and rock. As time goes on, this may change. If those movements help to calm or slow down their hyperactivity, you will want the proper equipment in order for them to achieve peacefulness. Having a swing is one of the best pieces of equipment to have. Continue reading to learn the benefits swinging can have.

    The Benefits of Swinging

    Movement is essential in the development of all children. For children with autism, swinging has the potential to impact the brain’s ability to process sensory information, which assists in the early stages of brain development. Swinging can strengthen specific sensory experiences an autistic child encounters. Sensory movements are described as touch, motion, bodily awareness, sight, sound, and the natural pull of gravity. As children swing, they are able to process these sensory movements which work in tandem with potential therapy solutions.

    Swinging movements can be used as therapy objectives to help children with special needs. It can help them relax, ease their anxiety, and calm their minds. These types of therapy solutions are great to be knowledgeable of in times where an autistic child feels out of their element or is upset.

    Swinging also can help special needs children combat their struggles with balance and coordination. Integrating swinging into their daily routine can help the development of their gross motor skills and muscles. The more swinging that is practiced, the more balance and coordination can be achieved.

    Where Your Child’s Swing Should Go

    As expected, you may be considering putting your swing outside or to purchase a play set for your children to play on. Placing a swing set outside is the most common space, but know that it is also important to have a swing that is accessible for indoor usage too. Inclement weather and late night episodes happen. You want to have a swing accessible for your child at all times to help calm them without any interrupted disturbances. The possibility for an indoor swing is available and with a little creativity and ingenuity, can be installed in your home.

    Swinging can help autistic children achieve developmental milestones. For help finding your next swing, look to our swings page. For help with installation, watch our YouTube videos for a visual explanation.

  • Carolina Retailer Now Selling Eastern Jungle Gym Swing Sets

    Eastern Jungle Gym is excited to announce the addition of an authorized specialty retailer in North and South Carolina.

    Liberty Storage Solutions is now selling Eastern Jungle Gym swing sets at ten of its super center locations. The company, which was founded in 2006, manufactures and sells high quality storage sheds. Gazebos, carports and barns are also available at Liberty Storage Solutions, which has a total of twenty locations across the two states.

    "Our swing sets have helped families create childhood memories for more than 22 years, so we are confident that they will do very well in North and South Carolina," said Rolf Zimmermann, vice president of sales for Eastern Jungle Gym. "And because Liberty is committed to providing top-notch products along with great customer service, we know this partnership is a good fit. We're very excited."

    Eastern Jungle Gym swing sets range from the Classic freestanding series, to models with a single slide and clubhouse, all the way to playsets that features a treehouse, multiple clubhouses and several slides. There are 70 playsets in total. They all use 100-percent cedar wood, heavy-duty hardware, thru-bolt construction and high quality accessories.

    All of the swing sets are available through Liberty, which also offers delivery and installation through its professional installation team.

    Eastern Jungle Gym is planning to have its cedar swing sets in all Liberty locations next season. The Liberty locations currently carrying Eastern Jungle Gym swing sets are in Burlington, Concord, Jonesville, Rutherfordton, Statesville, Salisbury and Conover in North Carolina; and Anderson, Gaffney and Newberry in South Carolina. For exact locations, visit our "Find a Factory-Direct Location" page.

    Eastern Jungle Gym will continue to grow its network of authorized specialty retailers--which includes national and international dealers--as well as its online presence. The company recently added Vuly trampolines to its online inventory.

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