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Play Sets are Fun & Healthy
Children thrive when they are able to play outside and discover the world around them. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services playing outside as a child leads to a healthy adulthood. They recommend kids do moderately intense or vigorously intense physical activity for an hour a day to eliminate the development of risk factors that can lead to illness. Recommended activities include aerobic and muscle and bone strengthening exercises. Running, swimming and climbing play gyms are all fun outdoor activities.
In addition to the physical benefits, outdoor play is critical to the development of children's social skills and Child Care Aware encourages parents and teachers to give them ample outdoor time. Since outside activities are less structured, there are more opportunities for them to interact with other kids in a natural and easier way. For example, two shy kids may play with one another on a play set, when they may not have connected with each other in a structured setting.
Running, climbing and breathing fresh air also give children the chance to let off some steam and reduce stress. Leslie Gilbert-Lurie, in her article "10 Ways to Minimize your Child's Stress," states that physical activity helps children strike a balance between mind and body. When this activity is outside, they gain confidence and a sense of wonder in the world, plus develop perceptual abilities like smell and touch.