During the summer months, long after the school days are over, when boredom strikes, kids usually will have excess energy that can result to a lot of complaining or worst, crying.
These energies often need to be put to good, profitable use.
The American Heart Association suggested that kids should get at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity each day.
Researchers agree that healthy kids are happy kids and playing and engaging in interactive activities are healthy habits.
But with different extremes in weather conditions, how can parents enable their children to get that 60 minutes recommended active time to keep them healthy and vigorous?
Away from the sun
In the Sultanate nowadays, mercury can rise up to 40 degrees. It is a terrible condition to encourage children to play outside. When the heat index increase, it can also become very detrimental to their overall wellbeing.
To address the needs of kids for safe spaces where they can safely play, many indoor playgrounds were set up in different spaces — from popular big malls in Muscat, to smaller venues in other governorates.
For mother of six, Assela al Kawaldi, she liked that these indoor playgrounds are child-proofed and the temperature, monitored.
“My kids are free to play whatever they want — in a space that we can closer monitor them and the rooms air-conditioned. Mostly there are also reliable attendant on the watch.
To date, there are several dozens of indoor playground all over the Sultanate. A few popular ones were named Kid’s Land, Kids For Us, Happy Kids amongst others.
Offering different types of activities.
“For my kids, their personal favourite is Kid’s Land,” Assela shared.
And it’s easy to understand why. It offers different kinds of games, from arcades, to moving cars.
Hamed Humaid Saaed al Saidi, owner of Kid’s Land said that they’ve designed their facilities to include fun activities allowing the children to explore the extent of their imagination.
“Here for example, there are different types of games that caters to different ages. We offer interactive activities where they can navigate through mazes, troubleshoot problems and imaginative manipulative and age-appropriate activities, “ al Saidi shared.
“We also have kid’s riders, we have slides, balls circle, swings among many others. We also switch some of the games every period to provide the kids different options to choose from,” he added.
But safety is a priority. Al Saidi said that their play space is all covered by safety mats to make sure that children are not hurt while they are in their playgrounds.
‘We made sure that the floor is flexible and comfortable.’ He said.
A growing trend among indoor playgrounds
Many of the activities on indoor playgrounds strengthen the children’s cognitive connection. The games also boost their skills and help build social interactive skills in a healthy atmosphere.
Today, many indoor playgrounds also organize several workshops and training programmes. This is to provide kids a great learning space but avoid them from feeling the burden of being back in school.
A mother of one, Maryam al Rawahi said that one of her primary concerns in selecting her favourite indoor playground was based upon her kids’ needs to have continuous learning.
“I still want them to learn from their hobbies. I want them to play but learn at the same time.,” she pointed out.
For Qurum-based Kid for us, they recently organised a training session with Dr. Ahmed about first aid skills every child must know. It’s the first of many they have launched this year and will continue to do so.
“In this hot weather condition, indoor playgrounds are all parent’s safe space for their children,” Aseela said.
Siham al saidi