Posted on 1st May 2014
Of the four classic outdoor activities (climbing, swinging, bouncing, riding) only swinging retains its appeal for all adults. Swinging is universally appealing because it is both exhilarating and relaxing, leaving you stirred not shaken.
While learning to swing is difficult, it is impossible to teach and therefore it is a skill that children prize highly.
You are experiencing changes in height, speed, acceleration, direction, momentum, the changes are themselves changing and doing so smoothly. If the physics of a pendulum are beautiful, then the physics of a swing are remarkable. A bit like the bumblebee being too heavy to fly, it seems that no one can really agree on how children manage to swing at all. None the less they all do, accessing a sensational experience that still feels great as an adult. Perhaps, the bee and the child learn to fly simply because it's impossible not to.
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