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The classic swing is a timeless recreation that is easy to install, always there and provides a short burst of fun. For toddlers and young children, plastic swing sets are more than enough but what is best to get older children who want a swing in their garden?
Swinging is a simple joy that most people have tried at least once in their lives and an ever-present feature in every playground up and down the UK. But, these ‘commercial’ swing sets are usually bolted to the ground, made with a steel frame and concreted in for stability and safety – this just isn’t practical for your home and garden in most cases.
So, we’ve taken a look at some swing set brands which offer a safe, fun and stable available to order in the UK which can be a feature in your garden for years and years for your older kids and their friends.
Before we start…
What classes as an older child?
Whilst reviewing the swing sets we decided that we would only take a look at swing sets which cater for children up to the age of 12. Or, another way to look at it is that the below swing play equipment can cater for children up to 45kg in weight with the average female of that age being 42kg and male 40kg After 12 they are obviously teenagers and with puberty on the horizon they may gain weight and muscle rapidly making children’s swing sets not appropriate anymore.
Best Swings For Older Children Review
Plum Marmoset Wooden Garden Double Swing Set
Plum provide one of the bet all in one swing set for children up to 12 years of age in the market. The frame is rounded FSC approved timber for strength and stability with metal straps for the seat ropes and a crossbar holding it together. The premium thick rounded wood enables the swing to adjust to the movement to reduce the risk of the set moving out of position.
This is a big unit weighing 65 kg but as it’s designed for children up to a weight of 55kg (or 12 years of age) it needs to be. You won’t find heavy-duty kids swing that won’t small. It does come with metal rods which can be concreted in but some users have just placed on grass and dug it in without issue. For long term safety, though, we do recommend concreting the legs to prevent rocking back and forth with older kids and especially two users at once.
The seats are ergonomically designed and moulded into the ropes for safety and security. The wood has been treated and will last a long time against the elements.
It’s moderate prices considering the premium materials, but it is available with free delivery and shouldn’t take more than 30 minutes to put together.
ZERO GRAVITY UFO Kids Birds Nest Swing Set
For a swing set which is a little more relaxing with a larger seat then why not consider a ‘bird’s nest’ style swing set. With a larger surface area and shorter swinging rope, this is a little more stable and less likely of rocking back and forth problems for parents who are worried about that risk in particular. One child or two can use it at once for a little more excitement than your standard swing seat for hours of fun or relaxation in the sun.
The 50mm sturdy frame is made with powdered metal which is strong and weather resistant with reinforced hinges to keep the corner and the crossbar connection sturdy. The bird’s nest is held aloft with chains wrapped in plastic which are extremely strong and durable.
The legs do need to be anchored as with all swing seats. So, it will need to be placed on grass or mud or concreted in but not on a totally flat surface without using the anchors.
The pièce de résistance is of course the bird’s nest seat which looks great and can sit two older kids at once for something different to solo seats. The diameter of the seat is 98cms, it’s made with waterproof polyester and similar material to a trampoline. Does get dirty from rainfall as you’d expect but it’s easy to wipe down or alternatively, you can place a cover on it.
Excellent value for money by Zero Gravity here, brilliant price and hundreds of positive reviews from real UK families.
Rebo Children’s Metal Garden Swing Set
For the simplest and perhaps the lowest cost swing set for kids up to 45kg (around 10-12 years old) then this fantastic metal set from Rebo fits the bill. The entire frame is powdered galvanized steel for both looks and weather protection, with a light blue wrapping on the crossbar to hold to the two nylon rope swinging seats in place.
Ground anchors are supplied and are a must to keep it from swinging back and forth while being used. Consider concrete as well. Wooden sets may get away with it a bit thinner metal sets like this are more susceptible to the rowing moti0n.
However, this is more than half the price of some sets and ideal for kids who may use sparingly and aren’t overly rambunctious. This is also the ideal heavy duty swing sets for older children who are on a tight budget and limited garden space.
Dunster House Wooden Playhouse Climbing Frame
If you have a spacious garden, the money to spare and adventurous kids then why not go whole hog and get a climbing frame set which includes the heavy duty swing set which can more easily cater for older children (up to 14) thanks to the superior support the entire frame offers.
This is only recommended for parents who really do want more and feel they will make the most of it. This article is about swing sets but this has been added for the sake of variety of choices.
The vast majority of the construction is with high quality pressure treated timber which will withstand the elements for 10 years minimum (it has a guarantee) and soft and warm to touch unlike metal frames. It does still need to be anchored to the ground for full stability but even without it’s much more secure than standard swing sets for obvious reasons.
The swing element is far more sturdy as it leans on the tower and very rarely rocks back and forth. Obviously, the tower part is superior to all of the other swing sets as it gives extra but the cost is significantly higher. For the price you will get a tower, slide, 2 Swings, balcony platform, monkey bars, ladder with professional grade climbing stones all included. However, it does need putting together by yourself or a third party service but not by Dunster House themselves.
A stunning product which will delight adventurous kids and give them something extra to keep them occupied in the garden.
AIPINQI Kids Climbing Rope Swing Set
If you just have a sturdy tree then keep it simple with this swinging and climbing rope set to keep costs down and the swing simple. With the right anchor, this top swing set for older kids can hold a weight of up to 200kg, which is adult weight territory. It has an O ring at the top which can be attached to an existing playground or wrapped around itself. Should take no more than 10 minutes.
The beauty lies in its simplicity and strength and the low cost isn’t too bad of a bonus, either.
It may not be the older kids swing you had in mind when researching but this may be the solution you never thought about. Ideal for those with very limited garden space, too.
Swing Sets for Older children FAQs
Is a swing a good product to buy for kids?
Yes, absolutely! Great quality swings are perfect for older kids to play outdoors and can provide hours of enjoyment no matter their age. It is one of the reasons why swings are an ever prevent feature of every outdoor playground construction, although some say they are under threat. But, safety is paramount for children and why you need to ensure you get the right swing which is appropriate for your child’s weight and age. The older they are the more sturdy and durable they need to be to cope with the force of the swinging action so that the frame doesn’t tilt with the direction of the swings force.
What age are swing sets for?
Swing sets can be made for babies who are old enough to hold the weight of their head (a bouncer would be better for them) comfortably all the way to adulthood – swing sets can be used by anyone! However, not all ages can use the same model of outdoor swing. As kids get older and weigh more it is safer for them to use bigger sets made from thicker wood or galvanised steel with thicker rope and seat. For much older children who want hours of play from it we highly recommend sets which are concreted into the floor.
Is metal or wooden swing better?
We feel that swings made from both wood and metal have their own merits and be equally safe provided they are anchored to an appropriate floor. However, wood swings generally look and feel better but can require more care to keep them looking their best whilst swings made with metal, like steel, can withstand all weather types with minimal care.
Do you need to anchor and concrete the base of the swings?
Of all the swing sets for older kids we’ve reviewed they have all provided anchors with their sets and recommended burying the legs or adding concrete to the base into the floor. We can appreciate that this isn’t ideal for many to want to dig up sections of the garden but it will make the swings much safer, especially for older kids approaching the age of 12. Anchoring and adding concrete will keep the frame constantly upright and impossible to topple over.
If this isn’t possible then we’d possibly reconsider if having an outdoor wooden swing or metal swing for your children is appropriate.
Is a double or single seat the best option?
Double swings offer two people to have fun at the same time whilst a single doesn’t. That’s the basics of it. But, if you go for a double swing and two older kids are on it at the same then it’s double important to ensure great anchoring and concreting the base. Alternatively, a UFO style swing set can accommodate more than one user and use the same space as a single-seated swing set.