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Jungle Gym

jungle gym image

Jungle gyms a trademarked by Sebastian Hinton, originally a metal structure made from steel tubing used by kids for climbing the patent was for a "climbing structure" often they include sections of monkey bars segments. However, they can be made into any shape and are found in playgrounds across the world. Climbing structures were patented by Sebastian Hinton in the USA and sold under a trademark of Jungle gym these were made from metal and were said to create a type of forest top through which children pay in a manner similar to that a troop of monkeys, this can be seen on this patent. This led to coinage of monkey bars with the children's play industry.

Jungle Gym Climbing Frames

Jungle gyms and climbing frames are essentially synonyms now, although variation is huge with small and large climbing structures coming under the same banner. Jungle gym in South Africa and America is a common phrase for the same thing as Climbing Frame in the UK. It's only when being more specific that you will find what you're looking for an example, garden climbing frames/ jungle gyms. This brings up climbing frames like ours, wooden ones that fit into your garden and come with various accessories that include monkey bars replicating a forest roof that monkeys would swing through.

Original Jungle Gyms

Strictly speaking, the original "climbing structure" replicating a tree line isn't really done with only one monkey bar set. Hinton's original patent has several side by side and underneath so it would need multiple monkey bars to be considered a climbing structure similar to the patent. Jungle gym is a trademark that has come to mean a specific type of climbing structure that has little relevance to its origins. Climbing structures by Hinton were said to be inspired his Dad's belief that he could teach children about 3-D maths principles, cubes and dimensions and generally getting kids to engage with maths practically having a positive experience with maths was an idea well ahead of its time. See article on this gives many examples of research on the topic

Modern Jungle Gym

Now jungle gyms can be made from plastics, woods, ropes and metal normally some combination of these most common are wooden climbing frames or jungle gyms. These can be made for homes or a commercial public environment, these have different considerations for safety guidelines. Equipment in a public environment will take a significant amount more use than one in a back garden. So a commercial piece of equipment will have greater strength and will usually either be bigger or part of a wider playground set-up to include more.