The 101 on playground shade structures

May 10th, 2017 · Published to Playgrounds by Steve Lewis

It goes without saying that kids love playgrounds, be it summer or winter. Moreover, parents love playgrounds too. They occupy kids and keep them entertained and give parents some much needed time to relax.

However, playgrounds present many dangers – and no, I’m not talking about monkey bars that are too high. I’m talking about playgrounds that don’t make use of shade structures. Many parents underestimate just how hazardous these playgrounds can be to children.

Playground shade structures are an absolute must and this is more so true for us in Australia. As you’re probably aware, we experience abnormally high amounts of harmful UV radiation. So, without adequate shade, playgrounds leave kids susceptible to overexposure from the sun.

I’ll take this opportunity to tell you more about the types of playground shade structures. I’ll also touch up on the benefits of having a playground shade structure installed.

1. Built shade structures

Playgrounds receive sunlight and UVR throughout the day. Moreover, the amount of indirect UVR that playgrounds experience is also very high. While natural shade structures such as trees provide some protection, trees alone are not enough. Playgrounds need purpose built shade structures so that kids are protected throughout the day.

There are several types of playground shade structures that offer protection from both direct and indirect UVR. Some common examples include shade sails, pergolas, marquees, tents, awnings, canopies and tension membranes and outdoor umbrellas.

Here, at Global Shade, we offer a range of shade solutions, including canopies, tension membranes, outdoor umbrellas, awnings and shade sails. Our custom-built shade solutions are used across playgrounds all over Australia.

2. Selecting shade cloth

Playground shade structures are only as effective as the shade cloth they use. Inferior grade shade cloths, such as those found at local hardware stores hardly provide any protection. Moreover, inferior quality fabrics will experience wear and tear in no time.

That is why it is important to choose high quality shade fabrics, such as those we offer here at Global Shade. Our shade fabrics offer up to 99% UVR protection and can last up to 10 times longer than cheap shade fabrics.

3. Benefits of playground shade structures

By now, I’m sure you realise the importance of playground shade structures. High quality shade structures can keep your children protected from the sun’s UVR whenever they go out to play. Also, waterproof shade structures allow your kids to play outdoors even when it is raining.

But that’s not all – playground shade structures offer several other benefits as well. They help keep playgrounds cool and provide a comfortable environment for children to play in.

Moreover, shade structures are available in a range of styles and colours. This means they can increase the visual appeal and aesthetics of a playground. Shade structures can be designed as per any colour scheme and we can also incorporate branding elements.


Playgrounds receive a high amount of UV radiation from the sun. As such, it is very important to make use of playground shade structures. Purpose built structures, such as canopies, tension membranes, awnings and shade sails all work well as playground shade structures. The shade fabric used in these structures should be of high quality so that they offer maximum protection. Playground shade structures keep children protected, provide a cool shaded area and can increase the visual appeal of a playground.

To find out more about playground shade structures, get in touch with us at Global Shade. Our shade solution experts will offer you all the information you need.

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