KOMPAN Play Institute

The KOMPAN Play Institute is KOMPAN’s specialist center on play.

The KOMPAN Play Institute works with an international group of universities, researchers, and practitioners of playground issues to continuously improve KOMPAN’s knowledge on play. The institute engages with users of all ages to gather feedback that drives product innovation. The KOMPAN Play Institute studies how effective play design can motivate children, families, and communities to play, interact, and learn.


From infancy to adolescence, children go through stages of physical development. They develop a sense of balance and other their motor skills. They train their muscular control and strength. They grow strong bones through physical activity. And last, but not least, they train their condition. It takes a versatile play offering to support and motivate the full scale of movement – simple repetitive movement won’t do the job. 

The KOMPAN Play Institute desk research demonstrates that play is the best way to support voluntary and intense physical activity in children. Research also shows that free access to a well-planned kindergarten play area made the children 3-6 years old 33% more physically active than the children in the control kindergartens.


Children learn through play, and what they learn changes as they get older. In early childhood, play supports the basic executive functioning skills of working memory and self-regulation, basic life skills, and knowledge.

As toddlers become preschoolers, play should support learning of more complex cognitive processes such as abstract thought, problem-solving, planning, and goal-oriented behavior. Games should increase in complexity to require more thought, memory and self-regulation from the child.

Through play, pre-adolescents increase their executive functioning skills. They become better at strategy, behavior planning, and action execution in achieving their goals, all of which are supported through play, rule games in particular.


Positive social interaction is the cornerstone of every thriving community. For urban families, playgrounds are free and fun areas for spending positive time together, and connecting with others.


Keeping universal design principles in mind, KOMPAN solutions are socially inclusive with features for all ages and activities.


Find out more about the KOMPAN Play Institute research here