Equality in play

inclusive playground equipment by KOMPAN

All children are different. They each have their personality, their strengths, their individuality. But universally they share an urge to play. According to KOMPAN Play Institute research, children, including children with disabilities, share common wishes for playgrounds to be thrilling, with varied play activities and being with friends. 

Since the establishment of the KOMPAN Play Institute in the 1980s, accessible playground equipment and universal design have been part of the KOMPAN DNA. Universal design welcomes all users, regardless of their abilities. It means an inclusive approach: all people cannot necessarily play on everything, but all should be able to play on something.

We call it play for all. Equity in playground access and use is a fundamental responsibility of our communities. The KOMPAN Play Institute is there to make sure that the right, documented solutions are provided, even for children in wheelchairs. 

We focus on sensory playground equipment as well in order to include all children.

The mission of inclusive play is to unite everyone, regardless their abilities, through play.

What are inclusive playgrounds and why are they important?


This study examines the degree to which non-specialized, age appropriate play equipment and playgrounds can be usable to children with mobility and learning disabilities, as well as to typically developing children. Good, accessible playgrounds aren’t more complicated, more time or space-consuming than other playgrounds.

Read our white paper to make well-informed decisions about what kind of playgrounds are truly inclusive and highly thrilling for all their users. Cooperative play between children with disabilities and typically developing children is beneficial to all. It improves self-efficiency, tolerance, and empathy in both groups.

Therefore, KOMPAN’s aim is to make playgrounds more inclusive, by drawing upon universal play formulas to create accessible playground equipment. Simply stated: to unite children in play. We create special needs playground equipment for children with disabilities who want thrilling play activities. 

Learn more about the reward of thrill in universal playground designs.

KOMPAN research on special needs playground equipment
KOMPAN truly inclusive playground research

Children with disabilities have less than half the chance of accessing playgrounds


What can inclusive playgrounds do?

Play between children with disabilities and typically developing children support the areas of self-efficiency, tolerance, and empathy in both user groups.

This survey from the KOMPAN Play Institute shows that 71% of the wheelchair users found their nearest playground to be inaccessible. It further points out what activities the children prefer.

Playgrounds are well-known motivators for effectively getting children to be physically active, in a fun way.

However, in order for this to truly apply for children with or without disabilities, inclusive playgrounds need to feature playground equipment that is equally accessible and interesting to both groups.

How to make your playground inclusive?



This publication showcases KOMPAN Play Institute’s recommendations for universal and inclusive playgrounds, based on inspirational cases of universal playgrounds, design points for universal play equipment, and the Institute’s most recent research and user observation on inclusive play.

Universal design and inclusive playgrounds are fundamental to KOMPAN’s DNA.

The KOMPAN Play Institute has engaged in testing and developing play activities for all children including children with disabilities since the early 1990s.

Special needs playground equipment can be accessed and enjoyed by all children – with and without disabilities.

Learn more about designing for inclusive playgrounds

KOMPAN research, equality in play