The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) strongly discourages trampoline use at home. If families choose to use a trampoline anyway, they should take precautions to make the experience as safe as possible.
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions regarding trampoline use.
How do most injuries occur on trampolines?
About 27% to 39% of injuries happen when kids fall off the trampoline. Another 20% are injured when they contact the springs or frame.
Somersaults and flips tend to be the cause of the most serious injuries.
Most injuries happen when there are multiple jumpers, and usually the smallest child is injured.
One-third to half of injuries happen under adult supervision.
What types of injuries are most common on trampolines?
lower body sprains (especially ankle sprains), strains or soft tissue injuries
leg, upper extremity, sternum and other upper body fractures
head and neck injuries
cervical spine injuries
Don’t pads and nets make trampolines safer to use?
While netting and padding help prevent some types of injuries, they do not prevent injuries on the trampoline mat, according to the AAP.
What can be done to make trampolines safer?
Place the trampoline on a level surface free from surrounding hazards.
Inspect protective padding and the net enclosure often, and replace any damaged parts.
Allow only one person on the trampoline at a time.
Prohibit users from doing somersaults or flips.
Have an adult supervise those using the trampoline and enforce rules.
Check homeowners insurance policy to ensure it covers trampoline-related claims. If not, a rider may be needed.
What if my child is invited to a friend’s house that has a trampoline or to an event at a commercial trampoline park?
Commercial trampoline parks and other places with trampolines may not always enforce AAP-suggested safety rules. Tell your child not to do somersaults or flips while on the trampoline and not to go on the same trampoline as another person. Ensure that an adult will be enforcing safety rules.
© 2012 American Academy of Pediatrics. This Parent Plus may be freely copied and distributed with proper attribution.