One of the most popular options for your kid’s party, or simply a way to burn off some excess energy for a few hours is the indoor trampoline park. It’s not surprising that this industry has been exploding over the last few years, considering that the pairing of a bouncy trampoline and a kid exploding with energy is a natural combination.
However, like any other activity, there are risks. According to a study performed by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were nearly 105,000 injuries related to the use of a trampoline in 2014. 22 trampoline-related deaths occurred between 2000-2009. The main reasons injuries took place were:
- People slamming into each other while jumping
- Landing incorrectly after a jump or while attempting a flip or another trick
- Jumping or falling off the trampoline onto the ground, floor, or another hard surface
- Landing on the trampoline frame or springs
So does all of this data mean that trampolines are a menace to public health, and for the safety of your children, you should never allow them to bounce? No, not at all. For example, 60,000 people are injured every year while skiing and snowboarding and 41.5 people die yearly on average. Nobody is seriously suggesting that skiing is too dangerous for kids, it just means that there’s an inherent risk to the activity, but when proper safety precautions are taken, skiing can be an activity that parents don’t need to worry about.
The same logic applies to bouncing on a trampoline. You can take your kids to a trampoline park, and by following a few commonsense safety tips, thy will have a good time and be free from injury.
- Ideally, there should only be one person using a trampoline at a time. However, we know that some trampoline parks offer rows of trampolines that kids can bounce between. Take a moment and make sure nobody is making their way towards the trampoline your child is using. When the coast is clear, they can jump to their heart’s content.
- A fast query on your favorite search engine will pull up lots of videos showing people doing amazing trampoline tricks and gymnastics. They make it look so easy, anybody can do it, right? Nope. Most of those people have had intensive training, and they know one inescapable fact. A flip that goes wrong can lead to back and neck injuries, paralysis, and even death. Don’t let your kids try doing flips or tricks.
- Before your kids get on the trampoline and go nuts, make sure you eyeball the sides. Specifically, you want to look to make sure the shock-absorbing pad is completely covering the springs, metal hooks, and frames. Landing on uncovered metal can cause serious injuries, and be seriously painful.
- We’ve seen it before where a parent is supposed to be watching the kids, but they’re focused on the smartphone or chatting away with someone else. Kids need adult supervision, and by “kids”, we mean children that are 6 years old or younger. Coordination and balance are the name of the game when using a trampoline, and younger kids don’t have that mastered. Watch them like their life depends on it. It just might.