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PLAY it safe on the playground

May 18, 2015

Falls account for more than 75 percent of all playground-related injuries, making them the most common injury. Lack of supervision or improper supervision is associated with approximately 45 percent. The Kohl’s Cares Grow Safe & Healthy program, along with Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, has developed an injury-prevention checklist to help keep children safe on the playground.

Following these guidelines will offer hours of safe, playground fun. Remember to “PLAY” it safe when you are on the playground.

“P” is for Play appropriately:  
  • Never push or roughhouse while on jungle gyms, slides, swings and other equipment.
  • Always slide feet first, avoid climbing outside of railings and barriers, and stay seated on swings.
  • Leave bikes, backpacks, and bags away from the playground equipment so no one trips over them.
  • Ensure that children use age appropriate playground equipment.
“L” is for Loose clothing or untied shoelaces (a hazard at any age):
  • Loose clothing or strings – drawstrings on sweatshirt hoods -- can also present an accidental strangulation hazard and could easily get caught on playground sets.
  • If you see a child with her shoes untied, help her out with a double knot. If you have young children at home who cannot tie shoes, the best shoes for playing outdoors may be well-fitting shoes with elastic or Velcro closure.  
 “A” is for Active adult supervision:
  • Active supervision means freeing yourself of distractions like cellphones that might prevent you from noticing if your child is in an unsafe situation.
  • All children need be watched by a responsible adult/individual.
  • Check that the equipment is safe before your children start to play on it.
  • Be sure nothing is broken and no sharp objects stick out.
 “Y” is for Your playground surfaces:
  • Safer surfaces include mulch, pea gravel and shredded rubber.
  • Make sure that playground equipment is dry to avoid slipping.
  • Check for any hazards.
The Kohl’s Cares Grow Safe & Healthy Program

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and Kohl’s Cares® share the mission of keeping kids in our community safe, healthy and injury free. That’s why, together, they developed Kohl’s Cares Grow Safe & Healthy, a community injury prevention program that provides a trusted educational resource for safety in the home, outdoors and on the go. The program includes an informative website, a popular game app for kids called Keep Spriggy Safe — available on iTunes or Google Play, and a Mobile Tour Unit that facilitates injury prevention outreach and education at community events. For more information, visit

Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin
Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin is the region’s only independent health care system dedicated solely to the health and well-being of children. The hospital, with locations in Milwaukee and Neenah, Wis., is recognized as one of the leading pediatric health care centers in the United States. It is ranked No. 4 in the nation by Parents magazine and ranked in all 10 specialty areas in U.S. News & World Report’s 2014-15 Best Children’s Hospitals report. Children’s provides primary care, specialty care, urgent care, emergency care, community health services, foster and adoption services, child and family counseling, child advocacy services and family resource centers. In 2013, Children’s invested more than $105 million in the community to improve the health status of children through medical care, advocacy, education and pediatric medical research. Children’s achieves its mission in part through donations from individuals, corporations and foundations and is proud to be a member of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. For more information, visit the website at

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