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Playground Planning Using CDC & SHAPE America Guidance


According to the “Recess Planning In Schools: A Guide to Putting Strategies into Practice” published by the CDC in conjunction with SHAPE America, Fit and Fun Playscapes is listed as a resource for Strategy Category 3: Creating an Environment Supportive of Physical Activity During Recess.


Fit & Fun Playscapes designers have been assisting customers for years with planning, by preparing sketch plans showing an image of the playground area and transposing images of the stencils onto the play area.


This strategy is not just for schools but also for any playground in your community. Fit and Fun Playscapes professional designers have created nearly 100 playground stencil designs and stencil packages, resulting in the largest selection of playground games nationwide.  This service has helped hundreds of customers with visualizing, pitching and organizing their vision for their painted play spaces, and includes principles of a zoned playground area into the design.

Jess and Pam Planning

When planning a painted playground area, Fit and Fun Playscapes takes into consideration the three physical activity zones as noted in Strategy twelve (Sports Areas, Fitness and Skills Areas and Relaxation Areas) when laying out our stencil games.  Zoning a playground area involves dividing the space into separate areas or “zones”  with specific activities associated with the space.  According to a recent study by the University of Missouri, “In the Zone: An Investigation into Physical Activity during Recess on Traditional Versus Zoned Playgrounds”researchers found that zoning a playground with specific games improve a child’s chance of engagement and increased physical activity by 10%. Additionally, Fit and Fun Playscapes considers a fourth zone, "Social and Wellness Graphics", to help improve conflict resolution, calming and inspirational concepts.

Co-author, Jill Barnas reports “By reworking traditional recess games to be more vigorous, children are able to increase their physical activity in a really easy way, improving their health and doing better in school”. 


 An impactful painted playground area should take a number of considerations into account as well. These factors should include points of access, topography, safety buffer areas between games, the selection of activities to include inclusive and diverse options, etc. Communities and schools have an obligation to provide solutions to help people improve health and wellness and painted play spaces on playgrounds is an economical, easy-to-implement option.

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