A REQUEST from a four-year-old has turned into a family business.
When Dylan Smith’s daughter Matilda came home from kindergarten asking for a monkey bar frame, Mr Smith started researching.
“I didn’t want a permanent structure in the backyard so I searched freestanding monkey bars and while I found several available online, nothing was within my budget,” the Stirling resident said.
“It upset me that all too often things are just out of reach for a lot of Australian families including myself.
“We all want our kids to grow up healthy and strong with the opportunity for reaching the developmental milestones.
“Monkey bars a are great way of developing upper body strength and coordination, which are the precursors for developing fine motor skills used for handwriting and other early childhood tasks.”
Mr Smith and his friend Shane Janicki, of Hillarys, have teamed up to create Growplay Monkey Bars.
“We spent the first three to four months researching the current market in order to establish what it was young families wanted,” Mr Smith said.
“Price point was the big driver for customers purchasing decisions with many parents simply not having $2000-plus to spend on monkey bars.
“We also established the average family backyard has become a lot smaller in recent years.
“With these two factors in mind, and our knowledge of manufacturing, we spent the next six months designing a high-quality monkey bar frame with as many features as we could.
“We then worked alongside engineers to have the frames certified for 660kg or equivalent to 11 users weighing 60kg each.”
Mr Smith said he and Mr Janicki were “extremely proud” of what they had created.
“We have designed and brought to market a product we believe people will love and enjoy for years to come,” he said.
He said the proof was in his own kids.
“Obsessed would be the perfect word to describe what our kids think of them,” he said.
“They were already active kids but now they are outside on the monkey bars at any given opportunity.
“They are also known as the ‘kids with the monkey bars’ and we seem to be having a lot more playdates at our house.”
The duo have already travelled to China to oversee the production and quality checks on the frames before they are shipped to Australia and dispatched for Christmas and this month they hope to travel to the US to discussing bringing Growplay Monkey Bars to the American market.