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Do you remember your childhood playground?

April 9th, 2008 · 12 Comments · Gifts/Products

I recall my school’s playground being covered in concrete. Yes, a paved playground! There was no question of skinning your knees. You just hoped it happened as far into recess as possible so that you didn’t miss out on the fun. Slides were made of metal and 11am was the cutoff for getting on the slide if you didn’t wear pants. Someone would always try to show off by sliding down the hot metal only to be rushed to the nurse’s office to treat their 1st degree burns. You got your first lesson on Newton’s principle of inertia on the merry go round, which was made of wood and metal. We even had trees with low limbs that you could climb. All of this came rushing back when I opened an email from my friend Nicole. Take a look at this:

thudguard.jpg

See those things on the kids’ heads? Those are call Thudguard helmets. The helmets are for kids 7 months to 2 years of age and is intended to keep their heads safe while they are learning to crawl, walk, and run.  These are not for kids with medical conditions. These are for EVERY child.   I can understand bicycle helmets, plastic playground equipment, even the rubber products used to cushion play areas at playgrounds, but a helmet for walking?  If you think this is a good idea, why stop with the helmet? What about safety goggles, knee pads, and elbow pads? I think you should bubble wrap your kid. Those floppy things on top are suppose to be ears, so that you can maximize the ridicule your child will receive while out in public wearing the Thudguard.  I am not advocating that we go back to the days of concrete playgrounds, but I think safety products like this send new parents into a tizzy so that the makers of this glorified bicycle helmet can make a profit. I am not a parent, but come on, isn’t this taking things a little too far?

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12 Comments so far ↓

  • fragileheart

    lol it’s like those mothers who bleach everything in sight when their new born is brought back home without realising that they’re actually doing more damage than good. The child needs to build an immune system, just like he or she’s going to have to get cuts, bruises and bumps for their skin, muscles and bones to get stronger – within reason of course. I’m not suggesting you throw your kids against brick walls to help them ‘grow stronger’. hahaha I can’t believe you had a concrete playground. We at least had gravel (and plenty of sand being that I was in Dubai at the time).

  • Milena

    I’m mother to a three year old toddler and the answer to your question is YES. There is such a thing as too much protection. Major overboard this hat is.

  • Kelly

    Yep, our playground was concrete, too. Well, the closest one. There was one a little farther away that was gravel and grass.

    These things are just plain silly. I’m a parent. I would never have put one of those on my daughter when she was an infant/toddler. Heck, they’re not even good for the embarrassment factor because kids that age aren’t old enough to know they’re being embarrassed! Now, for TEENS, on the other hand… LOL

  • Gina

    Weird! We never even had seat belts when I was a kid. We sat in the back of the station wagon.

  • Rachel

    Lets see when i was a kid, and mind you this wasn’t too long ago I am only 23, I never wore a helmet while biking, or knee pads, or any of that stuff. Not even for skating did we do that back then.

    I have a 3 year old, and I was concered about him when he started crawling and walking, but I would never have put a helmet on him. Before he got the hang of things I was always around to make sure if he fell he would be getting right back up again.

    There is only so much you can do, we tried the cabniet locks, and the cushion corners on the tables, but eventually those all got broken or lost, and before I knew it there wasn’t any protection besides us in my home.

    Still my son is thriving, would a helmet have made a difference when he was an infant? No it wouldn’t. As a parent you do your best to protect your child, but you can’t wrap the world in foam, and I think we would all be a little better off if we realized that.

  • Mamaflo

    Every scar I have from playing and hurting myself has given me character (as do the wrinkles and grey hair, or so I’m told). Could I have hurt myself real bad, yeah I guess but I wouldn’t have been happy wearing a freak helmet (and no doubt I wouldn’t have had friends).
    Thanks for the chuckle and a walk down memory lane.

  • Damien Riley

    Hey, I loved this post. It is a such a great notion to think about childhood playgrounds. It brings up every sense in my brain, and about every emotion. Do we ever really go far from the sandbox? I say no.

  • Monique

    Our playground was also concrete… with a broke down basketball hoop and one of those things you get on with your friends and spin until you are all about to puke.

    I had such good times at that playground… and I would hope my kids would have an equally good time at whatever one they play at. Minus that thudguard nonsense.

  • April

    LOL, my youngest son would rip this off and that would be the end of it.

  • Cassie

    I am a mother of 4 and I think these are the most ridiculous thing I have ever seen!!
    I am definitely not a make sure your kid never gets hurt by anything, ever kind of mom.
    I can’t look at that picture without laughing.

  • Lynne

    It’s amazing that any of us ever survived childhood without products like these! It’s surprising there are any adults in the world at all. You’d think we would’ve all died during childhood.

  • Michele

    I totally remember my elementary school playground. Metal slides, monkey bars, merry go round etc. We had tanbark in our playground though. Not as bad as concrete, but still guaranteed to give you a splinter or two, when you fell.

    Oh and the best feature? A 3 story fort!!! This thing was tall, and on the little kid side which made no sense to me. I can’t believe they let us, play on that. It totally rocked. Now days, you wouldn’t see anything like it, that’s for sure!

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