Your Guide to Wooden Playsets

A playset can convert a back yard into a playground, where youngsters of all ages can enjoy healthy outdoor fun for many years. But a playset is more than just swings. Today’s systems incorporate exciting components that offer a variety of activities. But choosing the right playset poses the challenge of finding one that has all the features you want with the safety you need.
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Your first decision is a choice between wood, plastic, and metal. Plastic can be colorful and inviting, but simply can’t provide long-lasting quality. Metal may seem to be a sturdier option, but unless it’s anchored to or cemented in the ground, it doesn’t offer the stability you need for your child’s safe enjoyment. In addition, metal doesn’t withstand the elements as long as wood. Metal can rust, crack, and weaken, exposing sharp edges or breaking. If you’re considering metal, also remember that it can become very hot or cold to the touch, a hazard for young hands!

Your best option is a wooden playset. Wood is not only the most eco-friendly choice, but it is also more durable than both plastic and metal. The Consumer Product Safety Commission recommends wooden play systems because the material is naturally strong, which means it can stand up to both the great outdoors and the rough and tumble world of youthful vigor.

When evaluating your choices for a wooden playset, here are a few factors to consider:

  • Choose wood that complies with ASTM guidelines. Wood is the best choice for a playset, but not just any wood will do. Look for building materials that are American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) certified for quality and safety. Woods like redwood, cedar, and cypress are known for their long-lasting durability. Plus, their natural resistance to insects, rot, and decay means these woods will last outdoors for years without being treated with potentially toxic chemicals. Be sure to ask if the wood has been treated in any way and avoid any that has been!
  • Remember that bigger is better. Bigger beams resist warping and cracking. So, while wood is the smart choice, you make it even better by opting for more durable, 4-by-4 beams.
  • Examine the hardware. Choose a system with hardware that is recessed to protect children from injury or catching their clothing on exposed hardware. Do not use plastic caps to cover the hardware because they can be tempting to young children and have been identified by the ASTM as a choking hazard. Also be sure that the builder has used commercial grade hardware, which is heavy-duty and either galvanized or coated to prevent corrosion that compromises its strength.
  • Check the joints. The activity on your child’s wooden playset can loosen joints that are not sturdy enough to withstand wiggling motions. Look for triple joint construction because it provides the most secure structural support.
  • Be sure the ladder is safe. A majority of playground accidents occur from falls. You can reduce the risk by ensuring that the ladder your kids are climbing is strong, secure, and skid-free. Check the surface and angle of the rungs to make sure it is safe for little feet.
  • Feel the edges. Sharp or rough edges pose hazards to children. Rub your hand along the edges to ensure they are smooth enough to be safe for your child.
  • Consider adaptability. As your children grow, can your wooden playset keep up with them? From the size of the swing to the variety of activities, your children will get more fun from a playset that can be adapted. Choose a system that allows you to add accessories later so you can extend the play life of your wooden playset, like slides, various swings, climbing wall, trapeze, and buoy balls.
  • Choose the right ropes. Countless hours of children swinging on ropes can stretch and weaken the material. To avoid stretching, choose a double-braided rope because the tighter weave holds up to the pulling and retains it size and strength. Rope with a one-inch diameter or larger provides a more secure grip—an important consideration whether scaling a wall, clinging to a rope and disc swing like a little Tarzan! Also look for ropes that are protected against UV rays, which can damage the fibers.
  • Check the guardrails. All platforms should have guardrails to prevent your child from falling. Look for a smooth, sturdy railing that is splinter-free.
  • Look for hazardous spaces. Small openings can be tempting to youngsters so be sure that there are no gaps where their feet, hands, heads, or bodies can become trapped, such as ladder rungs and guardrails.
  • Ask about the warranty. The best way to determine the quality of the wooden playset you’re considering is by looking at the warranty offered by the manufacturer. Check to be sure the warranty covers the structural integrity of the playset, which includes the wood, components, accessories, and workmanship.

Take the time to carefully examine every playset you’re considering. Think about the activities your child enjoys and the ways in which you can provide for the safest play environment. Making the choice for the best wooden playset isn’t exactly child’s play but doesn’t have to be rocket science either!

What Is A Good Warranty On An Adjustable Home Basketball Hoop?

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A warranty is not often the first thing people ask of when buying a home basketball hoop, but perhaps it should be at least one of the first questions.

Warranties are interesting things. They remain largely overlooked, but wait patiently for attention. If a warranty were a living person, they would be the strong silent type.

However, if ever needed, a warranty becomes an invaluable asset.

“So what is a warranty and why do I need one”, most people ask.

A warranty is a promise or assurance made by the manufacturer or retailer. This promise is to stand by the quality of their product.

There are different types of warranties and coverage does vary.

The warranty should be readily accessible and easily obtained from the manufacturer for you to read, even before your purchase if requested.

Why Are Warranties Important?

In the event that a product does not perform to a standard, the warranty will act as a buffer between you and the manufacturer to ensure any faults, or problems are rectified.

It is an obligation on the part of the manufacturer to see to, and adhere to the warranty’s specifics.

Things To Find Out

Keep a few things in mind and do not forget to ask the important questions. The below list is not exhaustive, but will give you an idea.

  • How long is the warranty?
  • Is there a cost? (This is unusual unless extended warranty is an option.)
  • What is covered?
  • Read the warranty
  • Adhere to any maintenance advice
  • What voids the warranty?

What is Offered?

Ryval Hoops manufacture their hoops with all of the ways others would call upgrades.

Ryval Hoops has one of the best warranties in the industry.

Distinguish the professionals from the amateurs when it comes to manufacturing quality.

Compare and remember prevention is always better than cure when it comes to quality. Seek out stainless steel bolts mainly because of their aversion to rust and ability to clean up well. While this point may not sound like a big deal, the aesthetics of your home basketball hoop should always be a consideration.

In addition, stainless bolts can also take the heat and contrasting cold weather and will not become brittle.

The pole of your home hoop system is another comparable point. Hot dipped galvanized poles are extremely beneficial in home hoop systems. Manufacturers coat the steel with a layer of molten zinc. When a steel pole is galvanized, protection is at the utmost. Companies employ galvanisation as a bodyguard against corrosive enemies found in the air and the ground.

Also, look for Teflon coated parts and in particular the bushings. The Teflon reduces the friction and therefore resulting in noise reduction.

The value and peace of mind of a good warranty tends to get lost among the excitement of owning a new hoop.

You have spent hard-earned money on your new hoop and you want protection, right? Always consider that protection is very important and should never be underestimated.

So how do you protect yourself?

Do a bit of research and talk to the best. Remember, a manufacturer’s belief in the product will generally flow on to delivering a great warranty.

For Ryval Hoop warranty questions check out the Ryval Hoops Warranty or contact us.

Does My Homeowners Association Need To Approve A Swing Set?

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You have your dream home and your children are eager for their dream play center, but you’re a member of a homeowners association (HOA). As much as your children would love the world’s largest swing set in their back yard, you know your HOA may not be quite as enthusiastic.

What do you do if you live in a neighborhood with HOA restrictions?

Know Your Homeowners Association Guidelines

Take a look around your neighborhood. Do you see other swing sets in the yards?

This will give you an idea of what you can expect to have in your own yard in regards to what your HOA allows (or whether they allow swing sets at all). Your HOA will want to know what play systems design you will have in your backyard. So it is time to shop & choose the unit that works best for your family. Depending on the time of year, there is a 5 day to couple week span from the time you order to the day it is installed. Use this in between period to submit your application to the HOA, most HOA’s will respond to you within a week. If an installation delay is needed, call your Tree Frogs rep and let them know. If unfortunately in the rare case your HOA does not approve play sets at all, no problem, the play set has not been installed and Tree Frogs will issue a full refund. Most likely you have moved into a family community or subdivision and complete denial will not be the case. Now you have ordered your system and the HOA has your application. Nobody’s backyard fun or birthday party will be delayed an additional week or two. The notice comes back from the HOA, “you’re approved” and within days all are swinging, sliding, spinning & laughing on their new play fort.

You can find out the specific requirements for your HOA in your closing documents, the CC&Rs (covenants, conditions, and restrictions), or you can inquire directly to the HOA.

The rules that each HOA sets forth vary greatly. When it comes to installing children’s play structures, including trampolines, basketball hoops and swing sets, you’ll likely run into a few of the more common guidelines, which often dictate:

  • The size of the swing set, including platform and roof height.
  • The type of construction of the swing set, including color options and materials it is made of.
  • The location of the swing set, including easement issues and whether it can be seen from the street.
  • Additional requirements, such as fencing around the play area, or whether you can use shock absorbent materials beneath the swing set.

In other words, your child might want the 7’ MegaDeck Fort with a huge rock wall, super long slide, and 4 position swing beam…but your HOA might not allow it. It’s better to find out what the requirements are before you start shopping.

You might be pleasantly surprised at what your HOA allows, like this

You might be pleasantly surprised at what your HOA allows, like this

We’ll Help You Find The Right Swing Set

There have been instances where HOA’s do not approve the installation of swing sets, but in reality, most HOA’s are not a problem to work with.

The goal of the HOA isn’t to cause you grief.

They just want to be sure that the swing sets and play structures in the neighborhood are not eyesores. Many also want to be sure that it is a wooden swing set, and that the sides of the house block it from the street view. They may also require a professional installation to be sure that it is assembled safely and properly for your yard’s landscape. In many cases, it’s just a matter of you requesting permission, or filling out a form and providing a picture of the swing set.

That’s where we come in.

We can provide you with the information your HOA may require, such as pictures of our swing sets, diagrams, and installation information. We are also happy to work with you and your HOA directly to find the swing sets that fit within HOA guidelines to make it easier for you and your child to select the best option out of what is allowed.

With the large selection of swing sets and play centers, and a wide variety of colors and modular options, you’ll be sure to find a swing set from our catalog that both your child and your HOA agree on.

5 Keys To Proper Outdoor Basketball Hoop Maintenance

Ryval Hoop Installation

Having an installed outdoor basketball hoop allows players to enjoy the sport as more than just a spectator, but as a participant in the comfort of your own home. Not having to travel or to find a hoop in other neighborhoods for training and practice is a practicality undeniable.

Whilst protecting your equipment may not be foremost in mind, realistically, it is necessary and more about common sense. In fact, it is quite easy if you begin with a good quality hoop.
Here are five keys to maintaining what is certainly a gift to yourself and an investment in your home.

Replacing The Net

Immediately noticeable will be net wear and tear. There are many good quality replacement nets to choose from, but the one essential thing to keep in mind is replace quality with quality. Do not be tempted to lower your standards on replacement parts. You will regret that decision. The manufacturer can assist with advice and product knowledge.

Cleaning Solutions

Cleaning of your basketball hoop will entail consideration of the three main areas inclusive of the pole, the backboard and rim areas.

For the most part, general household glass cleaning solutions and detergents, especially car and truck cleaning agents, are fine. Vehicle washing solutions offer elements that minimize corrosion.

With a glass backboard, try to remove all streaking, as streaks can be quite noticeable and a distraction for the shooter, especially when the sun hits the backboard.

Built to last, hot dipped galvanized poles resist rust, but that does not mean you need not clean them from time to time.

Warranty And Owner Guides

Your hoop should come with warranty guidelines clearly outlining what is and is not covered. There is no coverage for neglect and mistreatment of your equipment resulting in damage under any circumstance.

Read and understand any user guide that comes with your new basketball system and adhere to cleaning instructions and maintenance as the manufacturer suggests. They are included for a reason.

The Rim

The most important thing to remember about taking care of your hoop is to understand that having players hanging off the rim is one fast way to destroy it unless you purchased a goal that covers hanging on the rim in the warranty. Rims are built at different quality levels, see your owners manual or contact the manufacture about warranty coverage. A bent rim or poor rim springs will most certainly lessen your playing experience, not to mention ruin the aesthetics of your system. Some of the best rims have a wire & tube system for the net attachment. This eliminates the curly wire form net locks that can catch on a players finger tips and have a tendency to rust and fall off under stress of play.

Overall Awareness

Wear and tear is a fact with most outdoor recreational equipment. After all, your hoop was installed to be used. Be aware that your hoop, while being a quality item manufactured with pride and reputation, will be exposed to the elements not to mention vigorous play form yourself, eager friends and family. Inspect your in-ground adjustable basketball goal regularly and keep all moving parts lubricated. Tighten bolts where necessary and if your system is height adjustable, move it occasionally to make certain all is well.

Keep your eye on things, just as you would with any other asset, in and outside your home.

These are a few basic steps to keep your hoop looking good for years to come.

Make no mistake, abuse of your equipment will lead to its non-performance, breakdown and will ultimately hurt your investment. You have put a lot of time into finding the perfect hoop solution, so it pays to put in a little maintenance effort.

So now, there is no excuse. Educate yourself by knowing your warranty and speak to the pros about the best way to maintain your future in basketball enjoyment.

The Best Locations For A Home Basketball Hoop

Find The Perfect Space For Your New Basketball Hoop

Find The Perfect Space For Your New Basketball Hoop

We all know the feeling. It all starts with an idea. That idea turns into a real desire to have the perfect playing area. The trick is planning and preparation to ensure fulfilment of that desire.

Many questions soon inevitably follow. “Can I?” “Should I?

Before making a final decision, consider the following points. They may seem minor, when all you want to do is get your game on, but are important and form a part of the bigger picture. Help is never far away.

Location, Location, Location

This expression not only applies to buying property, but a considered topic when scouting the best site for your hoop. Confidence should not only be in the decision on hoop placement but also in the property’s ability to house it.

Driveways are the often first choice. Normally a flat, even area, they are by their very design more than suitable. Backyards and the side areas of homes are the next likely suspects, both allowing a suitable playing surface. After measuring the area, you may be pleasantly surprised. Many locations are more than capable of being marked out as a half court.

If you have the space, of course, a court area is ideal but not all of us have the room for a full or half-sized court. This does not mean you need to go without a feature that will no doubt provide years of enjoyment.

Surface and Presentation

Without the benefit of a huge outdoor arena, cement, asphalt or similar is recommended and will produce a better result. Avoid a grassed area no matter how appealing the overall position may be. The ball will refuse to bounce on a grassed area.

Excluding driveways, the surface should be on an even and level plane. Consider the injuries. Statistics show more of injuries occur by falls on uneven ground. Sprains, strains, and pulled ligaments can set back all areas of your life, not just the immediate game. A poor ground surface will quickly put an end to any enjoyment.

You may need to prepare the surface when the environment or mobility is a restriction. Particular bushes and shrubs surrounding a potentially perfect area may need removing. Also, in all the excitement, do not forget the actual particulars of your hoop. A height adjustable hoop will need certain placement considerations. There is no sense in locating near an overhanging tree only to discover the problem when the hoop is at its full height. Gardening and basketball are not really friends.

Remember; if it is not right fix it.

Lighting is another topic often left unnoticed. While many areas of established homes have exterior lighting in place, there may be a need for one or two floodlights to allow for complete illumination of a playing area.

Get some advice if you are not sure.

Love Thy Neighbor

Be realistic when it comes to choosing the area. Keep away from windows that if broken, could disturb or harm others. Not everyone will appreciate your prowess or understand there is a sporting hero in the making, so be fair.

Also, consider your neighbors when placing your backboard near a fence line. If you have a good relationship, they may not mind the collection of an occasional rogue ball. However, if their Rottweiler looks at you like a source of protein, you may want to reconsider.

In Conclusion

A little bit of planning goes a long way. Execute those spectacular three pointers in a secure area, beneficial for all and before you know it, you will have a perfect place to play at any time of the day or night.

So get out there and check it out. The perfect hoop coupled with advice and professional service is only phone call away. There has never been a better time to start the ball rolling!

5 Important Trampoline Safety Tips For Families

Trampoline Safety

There’s a lot to be said on the benefits of trampolines, both as a form of valuable outdoor exercise as well as entertainment. But those benefits are only realized with sound trampoline safety.

Not so. This activity is seriously a great way for your family to gain much needed time outdoors with the added bonus of health gains like stability and balance.

With this ideal match, naturally comes a certain amount of responsibility. As a parent you know all about responsibility, but there can be some injuries associated with this activity that can be overlooked in all the excitement.

Let’s look at some ways to lessen any possible events, sure to rain on everyone’s parade.

Strong Trampoline Safety Net and Surrounds

Simply put, the net is the one thing between trampoline users and the hard ground below.  Check out the net including the supports and also the springs, when looking to purchase. Thick woven braids are best and the support posts should be able to withstand sudden and sometimes constant contact.

Any padding should be thick enough to not be adequate for constant use. They should be overlapping and covering the frame for extra safety.

Look for quality that will take the tests your family will put your trampoline through.

Quality Springs

Speaking of springs. Bigger is definitely better when looking a trampoline springs. They will be far more shock absorbing and forgiving.  Your trampoline will take a lot play over the years.

Larger springs, rather than shorter ones are the way to go.

Durability

Quality, and a reputable supplier often take a back seat to cost.

This is really something that should be avoided. By all means look around, but ultimately look for the best and safest trampoline you can afford.

Play equipment surrenders to heavy use, after all, and you want something offering lasting safety and strength.

Annual checkups and maintenance are important for the life of your trampoline. Be sure to read the warranty details for advice on when parts may need to be replaced.

Remember to consider correct weight ranges specified for your new trampoline. There’s no quicker way to destroy equipment than to abuse its manufacturers recommendations.

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Out With The Old

Maybe it is time to look into purchasing a new trampoline The old one may hold lots of sentimental value, but that will pale in comparison to its potential for injury.

New technology and advances in sporting and leisure equipment now see consumers with an excellent selection for their individual needs. Upgrading may be the only way, for continuous enjoyment.

Old just doesn’t mean the trampoline. Sometimes you need to also look at placement, ground coverings and surroundings your new trampoline.

It goes without saying the area must be hazard free. Placing the trampoline on cement may not be the best idea. Look for softer ground, and perhaps even add a softer ground covering, such as bark.

Overhead clearance is essential. Keep your trampoline away from over-hanging trees, cables or anything that may be extending from a property.

It seems like a given, but you might be surprised at how many people forget about the obvious things, in all the excitement of their new purchase.

Have Some Rules

Did someone say party pooper? Don’t worry, rules aren’t for spoiling anyone’s fun, just the opposite. When users know the boundaries, it creates stability and comfort in knowing that you have their best interests in mind.

Your trampoline will need to be given the same respect as any other piece of sporting equipment or playing gear.

You can have fun and be safe too. As long as everyone knows what is acceptable and what isn’t, then there will be no tears, and lots of fun.

Being mindful about safety is not just about supervising your kids, family and friends. It’s also about gaining the knowledge of this piece of equipment that you offer to them, its capabilities and benefits to all.

Call the best now, so you can get out & play! Contact us or visit our showrooms for the ultimate in play time solutions.

What Trampoline Size Is Best For You?

The Right Trampoline Size

So, the decision has been made to invest in a trampoline for your home. You know that a trampoline is something that can be fun for both kids and adults. Trampolining, when enjoyed safely, can even offer some health benefits including improved posture and balance.

So what’s the next step? There are a few things to consider, once all the cheering and excitement has died down, with the first, possibly most daunting question – What trampoline size?

Trampoline Size: Fit For Purpose

Consider who is going to use the trampoline. Those joining you in the fun may range from your children’s friends, neighbors and their visitors, all the way through to extended family and more during holiday times.

If adults will be using the trampoline, consider that there are many differences in weight capacities.

The trampoline you chose needs to be able to cope with all that use.

Ranging from 6 to 17 feet in diameter, trampoline sizes vary in as many ways as their users. If this is for one person a larger unit may seem wasteful, but if there are going to be more than one person on at a time then a smaller trampoline will grow to be inadequate very quickly.

Remember your family is growing. A smaller trampoline for five and six year olds may soon be inadequate for eleven and twelve year olds.

Your trampoline purchase has to be considered carefully for the use it will receive, and be capable of bouncing back (sorry) for everyone’s enjoyment in years to come.

The Right Trampoline Size For Families

The Shape Of Things To Come

Now for the fun stuff.  While the shape of your trampoline is somewhat a personal preference, there are some things you may not be aware of in terms of why trampolines are shaped the way that they are, apart from the obvious surface area differences.

Historically, rectangular shaped trampolines were for the gymnast, and a serious training tool for those involved in the sport for more than recreational purposes. The round shaped units were seen for home based play, becoming an almost essential piece of backyard equipment.

As with most things in life, a hybrid was introduced in the form of oval shaped, and rounded rectangle trampolines. Simply a melding of the square and round, varying shaped trampolines remain very popular today.

The main areas of difference between the traditional rectangular and the more modern shapes is in the user experience. Round and oval will provide a softer, and slower bounce, whereas the square and rectangular type are known to have more left and a firmer bounce.

This of course is dependent on manufacturer. The best idea is to get on and jump!

Room To Move

In conjunction with the size of the actual trampoline, the property in which to house it needs to be considered in all of this.

Naturally, your yard or land will need to be a reasonable size to house the construction you have in mind. A quick calculation before you set off to purchase will sometimes determine how big you can go.

Don’t be discouraged if have a smaller yard to deal with. This doesn’t mean you cannot enjoy this activity as much as anyone else, you may just need to be a bit more creative in your placement.

At the end of the day, size does matter, but don’t be concerned about some of these things to be considered and learned. It simply makes you a savvy consumer.

Armed with the right intentions, and a little bit of self-education, will see your trampoline purchase become an extension of your family’s entertainment and time together for years to come.

After all, you’re making memories here.

It takes the best to provide the best experiences. Get out and play today!

Contact us and let us show you how to create your very own trampoline memories.

5 Fun Trampoline Games For Families

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Play has many benefits for children. Not only is it fun, but assists with socialization, builds physical strength, confidence and communication skills. Play can be as much about learning as the classroom is, if not more.

For a family, integrated play, consciously built into the lives of your household’s recreation is particularly important.

The old saying that the family that plays together, stays together may be never as important as in today’s modern, busy world.

So let’s have a look at a few games everyone can enjoy.

The thing that makes trampoline games so much fun it that many are caught out with the way that this unsuspecting piece of equipment renders you helpless, and entirely at its mercy.

If trampolines could talk, they would be chuckling wholeheartedly.

1. Hopscotch

Draw a hop scotch outline on your trampoline in chalk. This game may seem simple and a bit basic, but once you start you will realize it’s not as easy as you first thought.

It’s quite a challenge and much harder to accomplish than a regular pavement game of hopscotch.

Careful, you may find it addictive.

2. Pop Corn

Some of the simplest things are the most fun.

Have one player sit in the middle of the trampoline holding their legs up to their chest in a tucked position. They are now a vulnerable popcorn.

The other players do their best by bouncing around to “pop” the popcorn, making the player in the middle release their tight grip and “pop”.

3. Hot Potato

Four or more players are required to be jumping at all times. A soft ball is thrown between all players. It must be caught and not dropped. If it is dropped, not caught or the player stops jumping at any time they are out. Keep playing until one player is left bouncing.

Easier said than done.

4. Marco Polo

This game is stealth based, and asks for hearing and other sensory skills to be used.

One player sits in the middle with their eyes closed. Other players spread out and try to remain quiet.

The center person counts to ten and they can get up, still with their eyes closed. They then try to locate the other players.

If the center person shouts “Marco”, the other players must say “Polo”. This allows the seeker a hint on where another player may be. Once a player is found, they then become the center person to sit count to ten with their eyes closed, and try their hand at locating another.

At least four players make it interesting, for this game.

No peeking allowed.

5. Poison Balls

Put some balls into the center of the trampoline. Players pretend the balls are poison and therefore must not be touched or that player “dies”.

Players bounce around avoiding the balls, and hopefully each other in this game of surprising vigor. The last, still healthy player wins.

You may want to cover your ears from the screaming.

 

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Of course there are many more games to incorporate into your fun times. Why not make up your own?

Games can also be water or strategy based, all with the added unknown of the trampoline and its wicked ways.

Kids need playtime, certainly, but so do you. Take the time out to enjoy your trampoline just as much as they do.

Yes, we live in a time-draining, energy sapping world at times, but promoting play within your own family will see you build bonds that cannot be replaced.

Conclusion

Give these games a try, and don’t forget the best place for all your trampoline needs and advice is a call away.

Visit us today at your nearest location for everything you need to get started.

You and your family will never look back.

What Is The Best Wood For A Swing Set?

It’s easy to be distracted and infatuated by all of the accessories and amenities of a swing set, so much so that you forget about one of the most important considerations: will this swing set last?

Backyard swing sets and play centers are most often made of wood, and for good reason. There is a durability to wood, a natural strength that you don’t find in a lightweight metal swing set. But wood swing sets need upkeep, don’t they?
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Choosing The Best Wood For A Swing Set

Your swing set will be sitting outdoors under the hot sun, pouring rain, and depending upon where you live, the cold, snow, and ice that arrives with winter. Throw in insect activity and wood rot, and you have a full-scale battle on your hands against nature.

You want to find a wood that is capable of lasting a long time.

Cedar and redwood are the most commonly selected wood for outdoor swing sets, and for good reason. These woods are known for being naturally resistant to disease, rot, and insect infestation.

You will also find swing sets made of spruce, pine, or fir. While these woods are fine in some regards, they are generally used indoors without a coat of paint and (not stain or watersealer) and do not have the natural built-in resistance to nature’s fury. They will require additional maintenance if you want to protect your investment and have a swing set that lasts a long time. It would be best to avoid these wood selections for your swing set.

Considering Pressure-Treated Wood?

Some owners are drawn to the affordability of pressure-treated and preserved wood, but are concerned about the chemicals used and the exposure their children might have climbing or playing on the wood. It would be difficult now to find swing sets that use the preservatives that contained toxic chemicals (such as arsenic). Manufacturers stopped using wood treated with toxic preservatives after 2004 once the danger became widely known. It is unlikely that you will find this to be an issue with a new swing set.

However, regarding pressure-treated and chemically preserved lumber, what they thought was safe to play on years ago was found to be unsafe & is considered hazardous waste when disposed of. Will similar findings come out on the new treatments & preservatives? Who knows and time will tell but when children are concerned why take the risk. Redwood & cedar have many more benefits other than just being chemically free. Dimensionally stable, resists most twisting warping and is naturally resistant to rot and insect infestation.

Your Best Option For A Swing Set

The best options for your wooden swing set are redwood cedar.

These woods provide you with the dimensionally stable, solid foundation, low maintenance, and affordability that makes them a logical choice, and one reason these woods are popular with swing set manufacturers.

Tree Frogs swing sets and play centers are all made of redwood and cedar. They are built to last with minimal upkeep, offering you the widest selection of swing sets with the easiest care. You can feel confident that your swing set will last the worst that nature might throw at it.

What Is A Good Price For A Home Basketball Hoop?

A question we often get is how much an at-home basketball hoop should cost.

It’s a great question and the answer is that there is a quality basketball hoop setup for just about every budget.

Basketball Hoop Price Ranges

You can get a backboard with brackets for mounting above your garage door along with a rim and net all the way up to a complete regulation half-court with a pro-style backboard at your house.
Basketball Hoop
The is a very wide range of prices for basketball hoops.

As with anything, you get what you pay for.

Important variables to consider are backboard size, pole quality and materials.

Naturally, you need to compare features, style, and cost. In fact there is a range of things to consider, so here are a few points to keep in mind.

They are in no particular order.

# 1. Quality And Durability

Don’t be fooled into thinking that a few compromises here and there won’t make much difference. Compromise will usually lead to regret.

Poor quality is not always obvious. Look for thick poles with high quality steel (not hollow fence posts that need filling with cement) and an equally strong rim.

The best backboards are usually glass (more on that later).

Seriously consider a pro installation by professionals. It may cost more than doing the install on your own, but it will ensure there are no costly fixes in the future.

# 2. Backboard Size

A good quality backboard is essential and can be quickly and easily tested. The ball should bounce back hastily, almost attacking in its return.

An inferior backboard will show its true colours immediately. The ball will fall to the ground lifelessly, without much response. You see this a lot with cheap plastic backboards.

You can get a great glass backboard of average size that will last a lifetime and even increase the size for an even better experience.

# 3. Glass Vs Acrylic

Now here’s possibly one of the most argued points when deciding on a home basketball hoop.

To glass or not to glass, that is the question.

While there are conflicting and sometimes confusing points of contention, one thing must be put on the table.

An acrylic backboard will not have the same response with the ball as glass. Glass is the mainstay of tight attack and return of the ball.

Another point to consider is the overall quality of play. Reverberation is highly likely on acrylic. Also these backboards are prone to denting. Over time acrylic boards will fade and be susceptible to scratching, mould, and generally look “old”.

Acrylic backboards are sometimes an option where a compromise on costs is a must.

“But what about the safety implications of glass”, I hear you ask.

Glass backboards are tempered. Tempered or hardened glass is used for doors, walls, and vehicle windscreens. It is structurally designed to take a lot of punishment. It will not shatter like regular glass, and in fact if broken will crumble rather than producing shards and splinters.

# 4. Room To Grow

This is a very personal decision and one that needs a bit of thought.

Whether the hoop is for yourself, or for a growing family, height adjustability gives the advantage of having your equipment growing with you.

How many kids give up because it seems all too hard? Adjustable from five and a half foot through to full collegiate height gives learners the best opportunity to grow and become skilled. Height adjustable equals less frustration in younger players. Playing at a height is more conducive to learning, removing a towering, and seemingly undefeatable hoop.

# 5. Customer Service And Expert Advice

There can be no greater frustration than a purchase destroyed by discovering the people behind the product are simply out for the quick sale.
Pre sales and after sales service and professionalism is just as important as the features of the product.
A true professional recognises this and sees the outcome being future sales, and referrals.

End Game

Congratulations, you’ve come this far!

Now armed with a few important things to consider you can progress to one of the most enjoyable sporting purchases you will ever make.

Make the right decision based on the above and make your first choice your last choice.

So what are you waiting for! Check out our specials for great deals!

And contact the showroom closest to you to speak with a product specialist!

How Big Does A Yard Need To Be For A Swing Set?

Your kids have big imaginations and big plans. Make sure they fit safely in your yard.

Your kids have big imaginations and big plans. Make sure they fit safely in your yard.

You’ve decided to put in a swing set, your children are excited, and they want the biggest most amazing set possible. Of course, you have a few more things to think about than your children do. Namely, how large of a swing set your yard can accommodate? How big is too big? Will a swing set even fit in your yard?

The whole process starts with you sharing your actual yard opening size. You’ll want to account for obstacles such as the patio, garage, trees, walkways, fences, and anything else that might affect safety

Once we have that information, we can get started making your child’s wildest adventure scenarios find a home.

Leave Room For Safety

First off, rest easy. There is a perfect swing set for every yard.

However, each model, whether it is a Lemur Fort or a Mega Deck Fort, will have different requirements for space and yard preparation. And that’s where a professional assessment will come in.

What are we looking for during this assessment? The same thing you would be: safety.

We want to make certain that there is enough space for your child to safely swing and jump without coming too close to obstacles in your yard, such as fences, trees, utility units, and unsafe rock areas. To do this, we consider all of the other activities that children will do on our swing sets, such as the climbing and falling, and of course, space for the slide as well as an ejection area in front of the slide.

When you consider a swing set for your yard, you need more than enough space to set it up. It must include ample area around it to provide for safe play for your children, and a professional assessment can help you choose the perfect model (with modular options for greater customization) that fits your yard, and your child’s imagination, perfectly.

Once we have completed our assessment of what you have to work with and which swing set models you have your eye on, we can get to work on that foundation.

Enough Space For A Solid Foundation

Put a basketball on the ground where you plan on placing the swing set. Does it roll away?

Yards don’t always come perfect and level, and that has an impact on how much space you really have to work with and which model you might select. You may have an uneven yard that would contribute to a more complicated installation swing if it were placed without additional preparation of the ground.

The playcenter models of our swing sets are a bit more forgiving of your uneven yard, and might be a great choice for you.

The truth is most yards are not level. The good news is that a professionally installed play system will be level and stable, accommodating the average un-level yard. Extended ladders, extended supports, extended swing beam legs, longer slides are all part of an experienced installation teams collection of working with your less than level backyard.

Your local play system representative can make a house visit to access your yard if you are questioning the area you want the play set installed. Usually there is no-charge for these yard assessments.

Choose Your Model, We’ll Do The Rest

Ready to get that dream swing set for your children?

Choose from our great swing set models, whether it be a sailing ship or a fort, and make their wildest dreams come true (literally!). We’ll help you find the perfect swing set to fit your yard.

Should a Professional Install Your Home Basketball Hoop?

Did you know a basketball hoop often adds value to your home?

Not only can a new hoop be aesthetically pleasing, but can be seen as an investment like any other renovation.

Done right, a properly installed hoop can become an integral part of a modern suburban home.

Ryval Hoop Installation

Two days is all it takes to install a new hoop at your home:

Day 1: Preparation. The anchor is set. You can install the anchor for the hoop on grass, asphalt or cement.

Day 2: The pole and backboard are installed on the anchor and you’re good to go!

Installing Your New Basketball Hoop

Now, I can hear you all saying: Why do I need someone to install my hoop? This looks easy!

There are a few things to think about when considering a DIY hoop installation versus having a professional install your new hoop.

Consider all of these points and be honest with yourself about the one that fits you best.

Consideration #1: Your Time

Many folks undertake DIY hoop installations when they believe they have a few spare moments. However, the actual time involved in researching and understanding what needs to be done can be overlooked.

Let’s face it; we are not all great at following instructions or directions. This is mainly due to impatience, an inherent sense of independence, and a need to go on gut instinct.

When it comes to a project that could cause serious injury, most don’t allow sufficient time to gain a full grasp of the job.

Assess how much time the project will take, how much time you have and whether or not it’s worth it for you to handle the job on your own.

Consideration #2: Do I have the right tools?

Having the right tools are essential for saving time on projects and for getting projects done right.

Setting aside the “Where to” and “How to” of installation, think for a second about the “With what”.

If keeping costs low is a consideration, spending on essential items for an install may drag you kicking and screaming into reality.

Decent power tools, a hole digger, spirit level, and cement can leave you, and your wallet with an unpleasant empty feeling.

Don’t forget – if you make a mistake you’ll need to do it over, adding to the cost.

Consideration #3: Aggravation

While patience maybe a virtue, it happily flies out the window when it comes to completing work around the house.

Along with patience is a small and often overlooked thing called: ability.

Problems occur when people over estimate their skill level. Attempting a project without the confidence, the right tools and a genuine aptitude can see a project take much longer than anticipated.

This leads us to:

Consideration #4: Outside Assistance

Think about it. All of the above points also apply to Brothers-in law, neighbours, best friends or anyone else that is enticed into this project with the promise of a few cold drinks and maybe burgers on the grill.

Don’t be fooled – this is an imposition.

Lots of hours with lots of personalities and differing opinions on how things should or should not be done can lead to frayed nerves and strained relationships.

Conclusion

Having a professional install your new hoop saves you time. It often saves you money and aggravation and you know the job will be done right.

Now that all of the above is out in the open, one thing remains – don’t take chances with your home.

Remove the hassle by taking advantage of a professional installer’s experience, specialist product knowledge and know-how.

It’s all a part of the experience. Expert customer service and professional installation leads to years of enjoyment. Get it done right.

Sound Good?

Purchase your Hoop online or visit anyone of our Showrooms.

How To Give Your Children More Fun Ideas For Their Backyard Playground

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Childhood obesity and inactivity are two serious problems that continue to plague upcoming generations. Getting kids involved in outside and aerobic activities can be a real challenge. You’re competing against television, video games, tablets, and smartphones as children grow up in an era where they spend more time in front of a screen than any previous generation.

While a backyard playground is a great way to entice kids to get off of the sofa and outside moving around, their attention span is even more fragmented than ever before. They’re used to the fast-paced changes that they experience in those video games.  While swinging or sliding alone are really fun activities there are many other ways to infuse fun into playground play.

Come up with specific games.

Instead of merely sending your children out to play, come up with specific games for them to play. Having you involved in watching them play and compete, and even doling out “prizes”, makes it far more interesting than being left to entertain themselves. Games that see how far, how long, how fast, how high — anything that is safe but adds a bit of competition and reward will do. A structured game on your backyard playground turns it into a fun place of competition and imagination and helps kids start to see it as more than a boring place to swing.

Be their personal “coach.”

Sometimes merely having your presence and attention is all it takes to get kids active on a playground. How many times have you heard “look at me, mom!” or “did you see what I did, dad?” Children want to show you their physical accomplishments, and they want your attention. But take it even a step further and act like a fun coach or personal trainer.

For example, if your child successfully navigates across the monkey bars, challenge them to try going backwards on the monkey bars. Dare them to find out how slowly they can go down the slide. Count how many swinging motions they can swing without their feet touching the ground. Encourage them to go from sitting to hanging on the trapeze bar, and back again. Can they climb down the rock wall or climbing rope?

In other words, find unique ways to take regular play activities and turn them into a better challenge. Watch your children and see which parts of the playground they gravitate towards and how they tend to use it, and then challenge that usage and get them to try other activities. Encourage them to come up with new ways of playing, too (and be there to keep them from doing anything dangerous).

Essentially, you can help them see their playground as more than just some swings and a slide, but a physical challenge to conquer.

Ask questions, as if it were charades.

It’s always good to let your children come up with challenges and ideas, too, instead of being fed such things solely from parents. Asking them questions, even silly ones, that they must answer on the playground is a great way to do this. For example, you might ask “what does an elephant on a climbing wall look like?” or “how does a turtle swing?” This obviously works better with your younger children who still love to playact.

Helping your child learn that exercise is fun early on is one of the best gifts you can give them to help them become healthy adults. Getting involved in playground fun is a way you can achieve this, setting good active habits into place when they are young. To keep the fun alive and the healthy exercise in motion,  consider an upgrade to your playground to present new challenges.

New outdoor challenges and fun energy exerting activities can be had on any outdoor equipment.  Whether it’s a one-on-one game on the family basketball hoop or duck duck grey duck in the trampoline.  Outdoor fun is healthy, so get out and play!