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How to Swing on a Swing Set (Expert Guide to Safety & Fun)

01 Jul 2024
A boy in a blue shirt and red shorts smiling while swinging on a swing set.

Is there anything more synonymous with childhood than swinging on a swing set?  

Since swinging is such a common activity for children, you almost forget that there are actual techniques involved when using a swing set!   

These techniques are important to learn.   

Not only for the safety of your children but also for the overall enjoyment of the set. 

In this article, we will use our expertise as a swing set manufacturer to discuss: 

  • Step-by-step instructions on how to swing on a swing set for kids (with photos). 
  • Swing set safety tips to teach your kids. 
  • How to upgrade your child’s swinging experience.  

Let’s get right to it!  

How to Teach Your Child to Swing on a Swing Set (5 Steps) 

Get your swing set ready – here are the steps to teach your child how to use a swing set safely and joyfully:  

1. Ensure Your Child Is Secure in the Swing

First things first: Make sure your child is fully fastened into their swing.   

There are many types of swings - belt swings, bucket/baby swings, and tyre swings, to name a few.   

Note the type of swing you have and make sure your child is properly fastened before liftoff! 

A little girl smiling while on a swing set.

Photo features the Ultimate Discovery Swing Set Package by gobaplay. 

2. Give Them a Push  

It’s best to give your child a push for momentum to start the swinging process.   

While older kids can certainly create momentum for themselves by kicking off, younger kids may have some difficulty starting.  

Over time, you can start teaching your child how to kick off and create momentum themselves. 

Before starting the swinging motion, tell your child to hold firmly onto the chains or ropes at all times. 

A little girl on a swing with a woman standing behind her waiting to push.

Photo features the Ultimate Discovery Swing Set Package by gobaplay. 

3. Kick Legs Forward 

This next movement is a crucial one to master. 

To maintain momentum on a swing set, instruct your child to extend their legs when swinging forward.  

The best way to do this is to stand in front of them while they are swinging and really emphasise straightening their legs as far as possible.  

Tell them exactly when to straighten their legs (once they start going forward on the swing). Have them slightly lean back when moving forward. 

Two little girls smiling while swinging on a swing set with their legs forward.

Photo features the Ultimate Discovery Swing Set Package by gobaplay. 

4. Tuck Legs Backward  

Once your child masters kicking their legs forward, it’s time to teach them how to tuck their legs when going backward.  

What tucking your legs does is build more momentum to swing highly and faster.   

Again, stand in front of your child while on the swing and teach them when to tuck their legs (while descending from the top position in the air). Have them lean slightly forward while swinging back.  

Eventually, enough practice will make the kick legs forward-tuck legs backward movement second nature! This movement is also the key to how to swing high on a swing set. 

Two girls smiling while swinging on a swing set, tucking their legs backward. 

Photo features the Ultimate Discovery Swing Set Package by gobaplay. 

5. Teach Your Kids How to Stop Swinging  

Next, you need to teach your child how to stop their swinging motion.  

To safely stop swinging, instruct your child to stop the kick legs forward - tuck legs backward movement.    

You can also teach them to stop their momentum by dragging their feet on the ground. However, be careful using this technique with too much momentum. 

Two girls smiling while on a swing set.

Photo features the Ultimate Discovery Swing Set Package by gobaplay. 

17 Must-Follow Swing Set Safety Tips   

You now know how to swing on a swing set safely.   

But to ensure that your child is completely protected from a swing set injury, you must follow the safety tips below.   

These tips were pulled from our article “Are Metal Swing Sets Safe”.  

#1: Ensure your swing set is assembled correctly and placed in an area free of surrounding obstacles. Proper swing set installation is ESSENTIAL for the safety of your set.   

#2:Anchor your swing set, as shown below: 

Depiction of how to anchor a swing set from an instructions manual.

#3: Supervise your young children while on the swing set.  

#4: Don’t exceed the swing set weight limits.  

#5: Have your child wear full-foot enclosing footwear. No jandals, sandals or crocs.  

#6: NEVER wear loose clothing, hood and neck drawstrings, scarves or cord-connected items.  

#7: If your swing set is modular (i.e. has multiple structures), only allow for age-appropriate activities.     

A modular swing set: 

A modular metal swing set.

Photo features the Ultimate Discovery Swing Set Package with the Hanging Round Tent Swing by gobaplay.

#8: Limit the number of users to the manufacturer’s guidelines (this should be stated in their owner’s manual).   

#9: Never stand on or jump off the swings.   

#10: Never walk behind, between, in front of, or close to moving items.   

#11: Don’t swing empty seats.   

#12: Teach your children to sit at the centre of the swing with their full weight on the seats.  

#13: Don’t get on the swing set while it’s in motion.  

#14: Avoid the equipment if it’s wet.   

#15: No bike or sports helmet while swinging.   

#16: Don’t allow your child to pull or twist the swing chains or ropes to loop them over the support bar. Also, don’t add length to the rope or chain.   

#17: Regularly inspect your swing set for damaged parts. If you notice damages, repair them immediately.    

Looking to Upgrade Your Swing Set?   

Soaring through the air on a swing set is one of the great joys of childhood.   

Now that you know how to teach your kids to swing on a swing set, you can rest easy knowing that your little ones will be secure during playtime!  

One of the great things about swing sets is their flexibility.   

If your child gets bored with one swing, some swing sets (like our gobaplay swing sets) will let you change out the swings to make your child’s swinging adventures new again.   

To avoid getting bored with the same swing, check out our range of gobaplay Tree Swings 

They are compatible with most swing sets, come in different shapes/colours and are reasonably priced ($55-$129).   

Our Hanging Round Tent Swing is particularly loved by families: 

A mother sitting with her son in a grey tent swing on a single swing set.

Enjoy a happy (and safe) playtime with your kids! 

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