Google’s search trends reveal that many of you are searching for, and I quote, “the best swing set for older kids.” It would not be a stretch to assume that you could also be searching for the best playhouse for older kids.

Designing a swing set for older kids can be challenging, but with the right tips, you can create a space that keeps them engaged and active. We’ll share the key considerations for designing a swing set or playhouse that have proven effective. These tips can be used on any brand of swing set, not just King Swings, giving you the confidence that you’re making the right design choices for your older kids.

For today’s blog post, we will assume the youngest child in the home is about 6, and the ages go up. What are the best swing sets for older kids, and how can we customize a playset to meet those needs? (If you have younger kids and accidently ended up here, check out our Best Swing Sets for Toddlers blog post!)

While every family is different, a few concepts apply to designing playsets for older kids. Let’s dive into those.


Older kids don’t want to feel cramped and confined in a swing set or playhouse. It will make them feel like the vinyl swing set is for “little babies.”

Space can mean the size of the tower but also how much head space the child has as well. Using towers that are 6’x6’ and bigger, plus raising the roof an additional foot can do a lot to make the older children feel like this is a space made for them.

Headspace is really important when adding items below the tower. For example, a 5’ tower with a decked bottom only has 4’ between the 2’x6’s. That is not a lot of head space for a growing child.

As you increase the tower height, the head space grows. If you are considering putting a coffee bar or clubhouse under your tower for older kids, I strongly suggest making the tower at least 6’ tall. This will give them 5’ of head space under the tower.

Space can also mean the size of the swing set. Older kids generally play more advanced and active games than younger kids, so having more towers, climbers, and bridges for them to play tag, have nerf blaster fights, or run obstacle courses is important.


5’ is a great height for starting out, but it keeps the older kid’s interest. The difference between and 5’ rock wall and a 7’ rock wall is a lot. A 7’ tall tower is visually impressive and gives the playset a “bigger kids” feel.

Height is also important for the slides as, in general, the taller the tower, the faster the slide.

Height also affects which swing beams you can use. I generally recommend using a 10’ high beam for older kids. This swing beam allows for a much higher swinging than the standard 8’ tall swing beam.

Wild Swings

While this is much more of a personal preference issue, I have noticed in my own children that swings that provide wild circular motion are a major hit. They all love using belt swings, but a swing they all can pile on and really get going…that is a good time!

How to apply this practically: having belt swings is a great start. Having our team install a swivel hook in the center of the swing beam will allow you to use swings like a 3-rope tire swing or another big circular swing in the center of your beam.

When you use those free-range motion swings, you will have to remove the other swings from the swing beam as they will be bumping into them.

Another suggestion is to use two of your swing positions to get large web swings off online retailers. This will allow many children to use it at once or one child to lie down and swing gently while reading. In that same discussion, adding a fourth position with a hammock swing is a great idea if you have a reader in your family.

Put it in Practice

Now that we have explored a few important concepts when designing a playset for older children let’s examine a few standard models and why they are good for older kids.

Wave Rider

The Wave Rider is a great set for older kids. It is 7’ tall and spacious, with that high beam, tall climber, and slide built right into it. My suggestion for this set is to change the super spiral slide to either a turbo tube or a tunnel express slide. Those slides are more big kid friendly.

The Chateau

The Chateau is another great set for older kids right out of the package. It is 7’ tall and has lots of space for all kinds of games. My suggestion here is to increase the size of the towers to give a bit more space.

Launching Pad

The Launching Pad is unique to this list as the only one with a double-deck tower. This means if you have younger children, this set is great for them, too! The Launching pad has a 7’ tall tower, a high swing beam, and a clubhouse with lots of head space. I suggest increasing the back tower to 6’x6’ to give that upper tower a bit more space, which will also increase the space of the clubhouse below.


When shopping for or designing the best swing set for older kids, remember to look for tall towers with lots of head space both under the roof and the tower itself. Choose taller swing beams, faster slides, and more challenging climbers.

Remember that you know your child the best. If your child is a reader, design a little nook with a hammock swing to provide a comfy place to read outside. Or, quite the opposite, if your children are adventurous and turn everything into an obstacle course, add in lots of tunnels, slides, and climbers to keep it exciting!

King Swings has been crafting high-quality, durable, made-to-order swing sets for the past 35+ years. We build fully customizable premium swing sets and playhouses with the highest craftsmanship and safety standards. Our modern designs and imaginative accessories
will inspire backyard play and discovery for the whole family.

We get it. A swing set or playhouse is a big purchase for you. We treat every swing set or play house as if it were as valuable to us as it was to you. Read our Google reviews, and when you are ready, contact us to bring the playground home!

Justin Doutrich

Dad to three kids, Justin knows how important it is for children to get lots of physical exercise. His time as a school teacher reinforced that idea. He is passionate about creating fun, enjoyable playgrounds that are safe but full of learning opportunities.

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