For a child, jumping on a trampoline is exciting and fun – the feeling of leaping through the air, learning tricks, and trying to bounce higher than all your friends is enough to entice anyone. As a parent, you want your child to have a good time, but you also want them to be safe. A Consumer Product Safety Review found that 18,000 people were sent to the emergency room from trampoline parks alone in 2017. That’s not even considering the number of injuries that occur on at-home trampolines. What injuries can occur on trampolines, and how can you prevent them?
Types of Trampolines
There are a variety of different trampolines and shapes. Round trampolines are the most common, and some brands include a netting to help prevent people from falling off while jumping. There are also rectangular trampolines that are mostly used for gymnastic purposes and commonly used in trampoline parks.
Often, gyms will provide mini trampolines that you can use to exercise. These mini trampolines can also be found in homes for the same purpose. While falling from a mini trampoline doesn’t seem as likely, there are still risks associated with them.
In an attempt to reduce the risks of trampolines, there are also trends for in-ground — or sunken — trampolines. These are trampolines that have been placed within the ground, and the tops are flush with the rest of the yard. While these types of trampolines reduce the falling hazard, maintaining them brings other safety concerns. Improper draining can cause the base of the trampoline to rust and break during use.
Why all the hubbub about trampolines though? Sure, trampoline parks seem dangerous, but if your child is jumping on a trampoline by themselves, surely they’re safe from harm? The answer to this question isn’t so black and white. Yes, jumping on a trampoline is safer when it’s one person at a time, but that doesn’t eliminate all the risks. Let’s look at the facts:
- 93% of fractures in children 16 or younger are caused by trampolines
- About 15% of injuries on trampolines happen to children younger than six
- One in 200 injuries result in permanent neurological damage
- 40% of injuries are caused by falling from the trampoline
- About 75% of trampoline injuries happen when more than one person is jumping at a time
Types of Trampoline Injuries
Trampoline injuries can range from small scrapes and bruises to greater risks, such as permanent brain damage and death. Injuries can occur when people bounce, land, or run into each other, fall off the side, step or fall on the springs around the edges, attempt tricks like back/front flips, and a variety of other circumstances. Trampoline injuries may include:
How to Prevent Trampoline Injuries
Trampolines are a great way to get your children to exercise, but how do you lower their risk of harm? While the easiest answer is: don’t buy one, the reality is that your child will likely come into contact with a trampoline whether you own one or not. Talking with your child about trampoline safety is the best way to help them learn to recognize the risks and minimize harm. But, children will be children, so if you own a trampoline, you should:
1. Create rules for jumping.
Make sure only one child is jumping on the trampoline at a time. Children under six shouldn’t use a trampoline – remove the trampoline ladder to prevent young children from entering the trampoline while someone else is bouncing. Tricks like somersaults and flips shouldn’t be performed without spotters and protective equipment like a harness. Provide careful supervision to ensure your children are following the safety instructions.
2. Maintain your trampoline.
Before anyone jumps on the trampoline, make sure you routinely check the trampoline’s supporting bars, springs, and other landing surfaces. Padding around the edges should be in good condition and positioned correctly. There should be no tears, rips, or deterioration in the netting or mat. The metal base should be regularly cleaned to prevent rust and create a sturdier base. Order replacement parts as needed.
3. Buy safety accessories.
Make sure that your trampoline has a protective netting around the edges. While this netting won’t prevent every fall — as typically is the case with older children and adults — the net will provide a boundary for safe play. Consider installing an in-ground trampoline to prevent falling risks. Make sure your trampoline is installed on an even surface. Harnesses and other equipment can minimize the risks associated with tricks and gymnastics on the trampoline.
Emergency Services in Colorado Springs and Texas
If you or a loved one has been injured on a trampoline, we can provide the care you need. If you have questions or need immediate treatment, your nearest Complete Care location is ready to help, no matter the time of day or night. We offer a variety of services to help you and your family in your time of need. No appointments are necessary.
Find the Complete Care location nearest you.