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Trampoline Safety Tips

2:00

Trampolines are a lot of fun and great exercise, but they also come with risks for injuries.  All the hopping, bouncing and tumbling can sometimes lead to accidents, particularly if more than one child is on the trampoline. The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has released a list of safety precautions parents should take if there is a trampoline at the house.

The AAOS and the AAP both say that children 6 years and younger should not be allowed on trampolines.

"Children younger than age 6 are less likely to have the coordination, body awareness and swift reaction time necessary to keep their bodies, bones and brains safe on trampolines," said Dr. Jennifer Weiss, a Los Angeles pediatric orthopedic surgeon and academy spokesperson.

The most common injuries children suffer on trampolines are sprains and fractures caused by falls on the trampoline mat, frame or springs. Collisions with other jumpers; stunts gone wrong; and falls off the trampoline onto the ground or other hard surfaces, are also injuries physicians see.

Landing wrong can cause serious or permanent injuries even when the trampoline has a net and padding. The majority of injuries occur when there is more than one person on the trampoline.

The AAP doesn’t recommend that parents buy a home trampoline, but if you decide to have one, they offer these safety guidelines:

  • Adult supervision at all times
  • Only one jumper on the trampoline at a time
  • No somersaults performed 
  • Adequate protective padding on the trampoline that is in good condition and appropriately placed
  • Check all equipment often 
  • When damaged, protective padding, the net enclosure, and any other parts should be repaired or replaced

The AAOS adds these safety precautions:

  • Place the trampoline-jumping surface at ground level. Remove trampoline ladders after use to prevent unsupervised use by young children.
  • Regularly inspect equipment and throw away worn or damaged equipment if you can't get replacement parts.
  • Don't rely on safety net enclosures for injury prevention because most injuries occur on the trampoline surface. Check that supporting bars, strings and surrounding landing surfaces have adequate protective padding that's in good condition.
  • Close adult supervision, proper safety measures and instruction are crucial when a trampoline is used for physical education, competitive gymnastics, diving training and similar activities.
  • Have spotters present when participants are jumping. Do not allow somersaults or high-risk maneuvers unless there is proper supervision, instruction and protective equipment such as a harness.

Another tip that the AAP offers trampoline owners is to check their homeowner’s insurance policy to obtain a rider to cover trampoline-related injuries if not included in the basic policy.

Story sources: Robert Preidt, https://consumer.healthday.com/fitness-information-14/trampolining-health-news-285/surgeons-warn-of-trampolines-down-side-724795.html

https://healthychildren.org/English/safety-prevention/at-play/Pages/Trampolines-What-You-Need-to-Know.aspx

 

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