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About PMT

The Playground Maintenance Technician (PMT) training program is the most comprehensive, long-standing maintenance and inspection training program in the country. It teaches systems, processes, and best practices in proactive maintenance. The PMT certificate program equips boots-on-the-ground staff with the knowledge, skills, and practices to most effectively prevent incidents and minimize liability.

Who We Are

The Playground Maintenance Technician (PMT) training program is operated by the Indiana University faculty and staff at the Eppley Center for Parks and Public Lands in partnership with the Park District Risk Management Agency (PDRMA) of Illinois, a risk pool specializing in parks and recreation risk.

Eppley Center for Parks and Public Lands logo
Park District Risk Management Agency (PDRMA) logo
Two children climbing on playground netting

What We Do

The Eppley Center provides a number of playground maintenance and safety courses for boots-on-the-ground employees, ranging from a free introductory class and webinar, to more involved courses on materials, maintenance, and inspection, and our flagship Playground Maintenance Certificate Program.

As a leader and innovator in park and recreation risk management, PDRMA has led the nation in identifying the best training to maintain the safety of playgrounds for children. Ensuring agency staff who have the day-to-day responsibility for maintaining the grounds around the playground, and see the paly equipment almost daily are critical to the Diamond of Care that makes the PMT training effective. PMT addresses, through research and science, the challenges that counteract park maintenance technicians from completing high-quality, skills-oriented playground inspection and maintenance. The PMT program emphasizes this approach to create a safe playground environment for children.

Why We Do It

Over 200,000 children are treated in emergency rooms every year for playground injuries. More than half of these accidents happen due to lack of playground maintenance, and could have been avoided.

Wear and tear and consistent exposure to elements eventually weaken playground structures. Diligence in inspecting playgrounds for worn materials, loose or missing bolts, vandalism, and cracked or broken equipment is critical, as are consistent upkeep and repairs.

We are committed to providing the most comprehensive playground maintenance training in the industry. It is our mission to give you the knowledge and resources necessary to

  • Keep children safe and improve the quality of their experience while enjoying your playground.
  • Preserve your playground’s value to the community as an attractive and well-loved gathering spot that families want to return to again and again.
  • Reduce your costs, manage your liability, and extend the life of your investment in the playground and its equipment.
Seven children sitting on the end of a playground slide
Close-up view of a gloved hand waterproofing a wooden support on playground equipment

How We Do It

The Eppley Center at Indiana University and the Park District Risk Management Agency (PDRMA) commitment to parks and public lands spans over 60 years. Our combined efforts and experience informed the PMT curriculum and competency standards.

In-Person Training:

Open Enrollment:
The Eppley Center hosts several two-day in-person trainings annually in different regions of the country for your convenience. See our Upcoming PMT Training schedule.

Agency Training:
Members-only training for your park agency, school district, association, insurance company, or risk pool.

Host Option – Cost per student is less, but your agency is responsible for registration, catering, and   other logistics.

Partner Option – Cost per student is more, but the Eppley Center is responsible for most logistical items.

Please contact the Eppley Center for more information about hosting or partnering with Eppley on Playground Maintenance Technician training for your agency.

Virtual Training:

Students can choose between our self-paced PMT curriculum or 3-week National Online Cohort, where you’ll work with an experienced teacher and study and interact with colleagues working through the material at the same time as you.

For both options, we use IU Expand and other digital platforms, including our state-of-the-art Virtual Playground, which lets participants actively identify hazards and address maintenance concerns.

See our Upcoming PMT Online Cohort Training Schedule and Register Now.