MONSTRUM’s core focus is on visual design, motor challenges and safety.
The company was established in 2003 by the two dedicated founding fathers, Ole Barslund Nielsen and Christian Jensen, who met each other when they both created set designs at Danish theaters.
In MONSTRUM we believe that great playgrounds must reflect the world. We must allow our children to feel the excitement of being in danger and losing control for a moment. This is the feeling that it takes to learn to take risks in life in order to gain success and feel great personal satisfaction when you are back in your comfort zone. Of course, the motor challenges in a playground has to unfold under safe conditions.
The world is a truly fantastic, colourfull and dangerous place for kids to grow up in. The playground has to offer an equal inspiring alternative where kids learn to assess risks in a safe environment.
With our backgrounds in art and design we are able to create concepts for playgrounds offering more than great slides, swings and climbing. On top of that we offer playgrounds that nurture the fantasy of the children and open up for great role-playing. Let lose your fantasy in a rocket for the moon, on a giant spider, or in a ship wreck almost taken over by a scary octopus!
MONSTRUM exports playgrounds to a wide range of countries. We are proud and greatful to experience the acknowledgment of our customers though these awards and nominations:
German Design Award 2014, nominee
INDEX, design to improve life award 2013, nominee
InnovationSTORM 2013, nominee
Danish Design Award 2012, winner
AOK, Best child experience in the Copenhagen 2012, winner.
The story behind MONSTRUM
In 2003 one of the founding fathers of MONSTRUM, Ole Barslund Nielsen, was asked if he as a parent would participate in the planning of a new playground at the kindergarten of his son, Sixten Gustav. He joined a group of parents that investigated the market. Ole was not impressed and offered the kindergarten that he and the other founding father of MONSTRUM, Christian Jensen, could design a playground of higher quality for the same budget.
“We offered to build a playground for the kindergarten that took its inspiration in set design at theaters and thus offered both stimulation of the fantasy as well as of the physical body. It became a great success among the children, parents and employees and led to the founding of MONSTRUM,” says Ole Barslund Nielsen.
Right from the start MONSTRUM has created playgrounds seen from the perspective of the children. To get inspiration for this Ole Barslund Nielsen followed his son one full day and created these short video clips.
The foremost purpose of the MONSTRUM playgrounds is to challenge the motor skills of the child at all levels. The most successful playgrounds have a clearly defined age group or are divided into separate areas to meet the needs of the specific ages.
Nursery children need comfort, presence of adults, and smaller challenges. Older children need speed and difficult challenges, context and elements like tree houses -separated from the younger kids.
Younger kids are driven and inspired by watching the skills of the older kids (mentors), and the older kids are driven by the small victories in which they can measure there own advancement with heighs, length and speed.
When MONSTRUM design a playground you will always find a creative, visual expressions combined with classic elements like the swing, the slide, and the carousel. Elements that are fun at all ages.
We always create our playgrounds with as much accessiblity as possible, also for children with special needs. We regard the playground as a social meeting place for all children and we aim to give room for social activities as well as physical.
All of our playgrounds meet the requirements described in EN 1176/77, the safety regulations in the European Standards.
It is of foremost importance to keep focus on safety from the initial concept to the finished product.
To keep the focus on safety we have a certified playground inspector in our design team. This gives us thorough knowledge of both the rules and the usual interpretations, as well as the pitfalls.
After installation of the playground we recommend our clients to engage with an independent certified playground inspector to approve the playground. Our job is not finished until the inspector can write a safety report on the playground without remarks.
MONSTRUM guarantee that the playground meets the requirements in EN 1176/77.
”Risk-taking is an essential feature of play provision and of all environments in which children legitimately spend time playing. Play provision aims to offer children the chance to encounter acceptable risks as part of a stimulating, challenging and controlled learning environment. Play provision should aim at managing the balance between the need to offer risk to keep children safe from serious harm.”
”In play provision exposure to some degree of risk may be of benefit because it satisfies a basic human need and gives children the chance to learn about risk and consequences in a controlled environment.”
”Respecting the characteristics of childrens’ play and the way children benefit from playing on the playground with regard to development, children need to learn to cope with risk and this may lead to bumps and bruises and even occasionally a broken limb. The aim of this standard is first and formost to prevent accidents with a disabling or fatal consequence, and secondly to lessen serious consequences caused by the occasional mishap that inevitably will occur in childrens’ pursuit of expanding their level of competence, be it socially, intellectually or physically.”
Taken from EN 1176-1:2008
All MONSTRUM play equipment is constructed and cladded with Superwood and spruse plywood, meeting the demand to build playgrounds that last and protect the environment.
Wood in permanent ground contact is made of Robinia wood, which distinguishes itself by being able to last between 25 and 40 years in contact with soil.
All paint is water based Flügger 98.
MONSTRUM offers our clients the service to maintain the playgrounds. Please let us know if you want this service.
Correct maintenance expands the lifetime of the equipment. All MONSTRUM playgrounds are delivered with a plan for maintenance.
The playground is carried out in accordance with the European Standard, EN1176.
Defect parts due to manufacturing or material defects will be replaced or repaired free of charge within five years from delivery.
The warranty does not cover in case the product has not been maintained according to instructions.
Defects or damage that result from improper operation, storage, misuse or abuse, wear, tear or vandalism are excluded from coverage.