When litigation piled up in the early 1980s, the industry responded by raising insurance premiums and adhering closely to safety standards set up by the Consumer Products Safety Commission. Unsurprisingly, few creative ideas made it through these standards, lest any innovations be dangerous and result in more injury. God forbid a child jam his finger or scrape her knee.
But what the new, safe equipment is missing, of course, is the stuff that, according to Moore, makes play fun and crucial to early-childhood development: variety, complexity, challenge, risk, flexibility, and adaptability.
One of the most difficult aspects of Ollie’s newfound mobility is balancing his need to explore freely and his safety.