What is the standard height of a swing set?
That, my friend, is the question of many a swing set shopper. Let’s discuss swing set towers, swing beams, and parts of swing set heights and why they matter! Here are the topics we are going to cover:
- Is there such a thing as a standard height?
- Taller Heights: Less Safe but More Fun?
- Swing Beams: Taller Equals Better
- Slides: More Height, More Zoom
- Is there a way to get multiple heights?
Let’s get started!
Is there such a thing as a standard height?
That is a good question, and as you look throughout the industry, 5’ tall is the most common swing set tower height, especially among the high-quality swing set manufacturers. King Swings swing sets use the 5’ size on many swing sets, as do many other manufacturers similar to King Swings.
Why is a swing set tower at 5’ tall so popular?
There could be many reasons why 5’ is such a popular height. For one, many slides are made for that height. Also, once you start going past 5’ tall, the amount of mulch you need for safety increases significantly.
I believe 5’ became a standard height because it is a great compromise. It is short enough not to feel scary and too tall for little children, yet tall enough to keep the swing set interesting for years. This height looks good and seems versatile for children of all ages. The slides attached to a 5’ deck don’t stick out super far, and climbers feel significantly tall without making mom and dad pucker up as their little ones ascend.
All in all, 5’ became so popular because of its versatility, and now, since it has been standard for so long, most likely has the most options available for its height.
Taller Heights: Less Safe but More Fun?
The simple truth is that a shorter fall is less likely to hurt you than a longer fall. Strictly speaking, taller swing set towers are less safe than shorter swing set towers.
In this conversation, you have to choose what you are comfortable with. You know your children’s strengths and weaknesses and should trust your gut instinct.
That being said, taller swing sets are generally more fun. From taller climbers to faster slides, tall swing set towers tend to keep children interested in the swing set for more years than shorter swing sets. If you are thinking of using the swing set long-term, which you should, getting a swing set that is 6’ or even 7’ tall can keep your children going out day after day, year after year.
So, how can you mitigate risk on a taller swing set? First, teach your children how to use the equipment safely. Next, don’t allow horseplay up on the tower. There should be no shoving, fighting, or crowding in the swing set tower. Third, don’t allow your children to misuse the equipment. That means no climbing on the outside of tube slides or up on railings.
Swing Beams: Taller Equals Better
Okay, fair enough; this may be a personal preference here since we can’t prove that a taller swing beam is better in every situation. Your unique needs may contradict my belief that a taller swing beam is always better.
I have come to this conclusion both using and watching children use the swing beams at King Swings. Many high-end swing set manufacturers have two heights of swing beams, 8’ and 10’. King Swings is no exception.
So why do I argue that the 10’ swing beam is better than the 8’ tall one?
Again, it all comes down to keeping your children using the set for as many years as possible. A child can get a tall, fast swing going with a 10’ high swing beam, but little children can use it just as well as the 8’ swing beam. This means even as the children grow, the swing beam stays fun and exciting as they push their swinging to the max!
Now, the catch with the 10’ tall swing beam is that you need a tall swing set to attach it to. It works best with 7’ tall towers, but we can use it on some 6’ tall swing set towers.
Slides: More Height, More Zoom
It doesn’t take much thought to understand that a taller slide is a better slide. While it may not be technically faster because the angles are the same, it feels faster! Going down a 7’ tube slide is more of a rush than its shorter cousins.
The turbo tube slide (the twirly, covered slide) benefits from a taller height. We do not offer the turbo tube at a 5’ size since it isn’t tall enough to turn the whole way around, thus creating more of a drop than a turn. However, the 7’ turbo tube slide does its whole twist and is fun!
I have been up and down my fair share of slides over the past years working with King Swigns, and the taller a slide is, the more fun it is! Especially when a pool of water is at the bottom, and it is a hot summer day! Perfection!
Is there a way to get multiple heights?
You may wonder if there is a way to get the benefits of taller swing sets but the safety of shorter towers. And yes, there is a compromise.
Double deck swing set towers have both a taller and shorter deck height. The Captain’s Castle is an excellent illustration of this type of tower.
The tower, though built as one, has two different levels. One is 5’ tall, and the other is 7’ tall. This swing set’s 7’ tall height has a 7’ tall rock wall and super spiral slide attached to it. The 5’ tall level has a ladder, waterfall slide, and monkey bars.
This means that this swing set has a place for little kids to climb up to and learn how to be deft on a swing set while still having that taller height for older kids. Double-deck swing sets such as the Captain’s Castle are a great way to increase the years of use of your swing set without compromising safety.
While the industry standard for swing set deck heights for high-end swing sets is 5’, there are many benefits for going up to 6’ or even 7’. However, you must check your gut and ensure you are comfortable with this tall of a swing set tower. If you are, the taller tower will help keep your children using the swing set year after year.
King Swings has been crafting swing sets of all heights for over 30+ years. Our vinyl swing sets are virtually maintenance-free and splinter-free and look good year after year. All of our sets are customizable, including the swing set tower height, so if you want to go up or down in height on any of our standard swing sets, you can!