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Building the ABCs of physical literacy in school playgrounds.

Posted on 23.01.2023 in Children's development , Company News , Education , physical literacy , Playgrounds , school , school playground

Establishing healthy attitudes and habits around movement in younger years empowers children to lead healthy and fulfilling lives into tween years, adulthood and beyond. Having the confidence, ability and appreciation for movement is known as physical literacy and has a wealth of physical, psychological, social, and cognitive benefits (Australian Sports Commission, 2022).

In Australia, physical literacy and physical activity are declining as families and children lead far more sedentary lifestyles. A 2022 Deakin University report rated Australia a D- for overall physical activity. Alarmingly, less than one quarter of Australian children are meeting the national guidelines for recommended levels of daily physical activity (Deakin University, 2022).

Physical literacy is measured by the four basic skills that support human movement: agility, balance, coordination, and speed. Often called the ABCs of physical literacy, these skills are a necessity as children develop key movement capabilities that will support them daily across their lifetime. (Australian Sports Commission, 2022).

The four key components of physical literacy

Agility – The ability to quickly adjust the body’s physical position in respone to what is going on around us.

Balance – The ability to respond to stay upright or still despite impacts on sensory systems.

Coordination – The ability to use multiple body parts simultaneously to complete activities that involve our brain, body, and environment.

Speed – The pace at which once can response and react. Speed is heavily influenced by our muscle strength, neurological responses and physical fitness.

Schools play an important role in developing children’s physical literacy through sports, physical education, and their outdoor spaces. A playground is the perfect space for children to develop physical literacy as they participate in self-motivated movement through play. Students being active at lunchtime has massive benefits for students physical and mental wellbeing, but also boosts academic performance and classroom behaviour.

User-tested and backed by science, our products are proven to get students moving through the enjoyment of play.

Climbing Nets

Climbing nets are the perfect way to get students moving. As they make their way across an agility course or through a labyrinth of ropes in a dome, they are working on their cross-body coordination, core strength and cognitive thinking as they plan their climbing path. Climbing nets train agility, balance, coordination, spatial awareness, and social-emotional skills as students chat and cheer each other on.

Play structures

Well-designed play towers that go beyond ‘post and platform’ play will encourage students to exercise their whole bodies and brains. Interconnected play towers with bridges and climbing challenges are the perfect way for students to develop their ABC skills. Bannister bars, monkey bars and fireman poles are other play elements that encourage movement. Our play towers are scalable for each age group, ensuring that students of all ages are continuously being challenged.

Obstacle course

Obstacle courses are an innovative way to get students moving through playful exercise. Students can compete against their time or each other as they run, crawl, climb, jump and balance their way along the course. With the ability to be incorporated into PE classes, an obstacle course provides a fun and challenging space for students to work on their physical literacy skills.

By creating school playgrounds that inspire children to move, play and develop physical literacy, we are helping them to form the building blocks of a happy and healthy life.

If you are looking to build a school playground but don’t know where to start, we have crafted a booklet to help you kick start your journey.

Get in touch with our education consultants for a free copy.




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