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Outdoor Swings Are an Integral Part of Your Child’s Well-Being

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Author: Tonya Kerniva

Seen everywhere from backyards, to playgrounds, to parks, outdoor swings are a recognizable and beloved part of American culture. Both young and old enjoy the carefree act of swinging on a pleasant day. However, a swing is more than a mere toy. Studies show that swinging is proven to promote a number of health benefits in children and adults that helps with everything from physical therapy to growth and development. Here are just a few instances why outdoor swings are such a valuable asset to the home.

In young children, outdoor swings can have a number of positive physical, cognitive and social effects. First off, in public settings like parks or at home around friends, swing sets promote social interaction. Physically speaking, swinging aids in the general fitness as part of a child's everyday play regiment. As per cognitive benefits, outdoor swings promote movement development and perceptual skills, as well as mental representation, spatial awareness and sensory integration advancement which include learning to balance.

A disability is not only physically crippling, it can emotionally be hard on a child. For many children that are confined to a wheelchair or other suffer from motor skill ailment, mobility is an issue. Not being able to play with the other children, a disabled child is much more likely to develop a case of depression. Researchers recognizing this as a problem have in recent years made great advancements toward the designing of special outdoor swings and other toys that cater to kids with special needs.

One such invention is the patented Liberty Swing. This device, a work of an Australian, gives children of all circumstances the chance to be a kid. The way in which the swing work is that it is composed of a large box-shaped base connected on either side to an overhead crossbeam, much like regular swings. The front of this box is detachable and folds down to act as a wheelchair ramp. The swing also comes with a popup seat that accommodates children not in a wheelchair. The breakthrough is safe and fun and operates with the simple turn of a key.

A relatively new approach for preschooler development is the act of body spinning. According to researchers, the act of spinning stimulates different regions of a child's brain simultaneously, thereby creating a series of interconnected pathways therein. The result of this is the advanced development of learning skills like spatial awareness, balance, rhythm and muscle control. A lot of different shapes of outdoor swings can be used by children as spinning tools. In addition to regular swing sets, tire swings and single chain swings work.

Lucky for us adults, the therapeutic benefits of swinging are not confined solely to children. Adults can also boost their health using outdoor swings. For example, simply the act of being outside for extended periods of time is healthy: fresh air, visual stimulation and getting endorphins from sunlight are all natural boosters. Not the mention, getting away from the computer and TV saves eyes from strain and brains from tedium. As a side not, outdoor swings are proven to relieve stress. Less stress means a stronger immune system. The swinging motion helps also with circulation, and so may reduce the appearance of unsightly varicose veins.

As one type of swing, hammocks possess some unique qualities that make them good for you. Physicians sometimes prescribe hammocks to certain patients with chronic back and leg pain. The way in which hammocks work as a therapy is that they conform to one's body, thus evenly distributing surface area (weight) and taking the excess strain off of aching muscles by allowing the spine to relax. Another surprising benefit to swings is improves focus. The rocking motion produced by outdoor swings is said to stimulate the cerebral cortex, the part of the brain which helps concentration. This is especially good as a developer for children with ADD/ADHD.

First aid kits, helmets, elbow pads, flashcards. All of these keep kids safe or help them to grow. Almost no one buys a swing set with more thought than of it being a fun toy. Now that these exciting developments about outdoor swings have come to light, parents can rest assured that their money is being well-spent on something that is both fun and useful.

About the author: Tonya Kerniva is an experienced research and free lance writing professional. She writes for outdoor and patio web sites including

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