Toddlers love to bounce, you will find them jumping off your furniture or figuring out how many steps they can jump over. When it comes to trampolines and their safety, you must be very careful. Today you can find mini trampolines that are designed especially for kids to ''learn how to bounce''. These trampolines are usually 36 inches in diameter and have a safety bar to hold onto during use. Despite that accidents and injuries can happen easily and in this article, we will set out some facts for you.
Think twice before you let toddlers on an outdoor trampoline
Toddlers and outdoor trampolines are not the best combinations and here's why. The bones in toddlers are much softer than the bones of other older kids or adults. Therefore, their bones are more susceptible to compression because it is more spongy than solid. In 2014, the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, funded by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, reported about more than 100.000 injuries on the trampoline, and more than 80% of those injuries involved children and 42% of them were toddlers. The most common injury is a sprained ankle, this isn't too serious but can be very unpleasant and will limit kids' participation in sports and other activities. Broken bones are also very often injured and around 30% of injuries in kids ages 6 to 17 were fractures. Most severe are injuries to the head and neck which make up 10% to 17% percent of all trampoline injuries. This is serious because it can lead to paralysis or other permanent disability.
How an injury occurs?
Multiple users - about three-fourths of trampoline injuries happen when multiple users jump on the trampoline. This is especially dangerous for kids if they are jumping with heavier and older kids. Smaller jumpers are up to 14 times more likely to get hurt.
Falls from the trampoline - it's proven that the safety net doesn't have a significant effect on the rate of this kind of injury. The main reason why is because of enclosures that may not be installed correctly or can wear out quickly. Kids also like to climb on the netting which is not good.
Impact with frame and springs - just like with nets, it seems that padding around a trampoline's frame and springs don't prevent injuries like they should. It's also probably because padding wears out quickly.
Failed stuns - this is very dangerous, failed attempts to flip can result in the most devastating injuries of the cervical spine, and cause permanent disability or even death in the worst scenario.
Trampoline safety rules
Although we probably mentioned it in our earlier article about trampolines it is not out of place to repeat the main safety rules:
- only one person is allowed to jump at the time
- no somersaults or flips
- make sure that padding and netting are in good condition and parts are replaced as needed
- kids must be supervised by an adult
- trampolines should be set at ground level, on areas cleared of surrounding hazards
What about indoor trampolines?
Indoor trampolines today are more and more represented and so are the number of injuries associated with them. Trampoline parks should follow the same rules as home trampolines. Trampolines are used in training for gymnastics, diving, or figure skating. The differences are small, but users should have safety belts or harnesses while jumping.
Some of you maybe would like to try mini-trampolines (also called rebounders) for adults but it's not recommended for home use, only in supervised training.
To sum up, if you ever wonder are the trampolines safe for toddlers, the short answer is no. But if you look out for your child while jumping and follow all the rules we mentioned then the risk is negligible. Great memories involve the trampoline so give it a try. Of course, start with mini trampolines for kids as we said, this type of trampoline introduces children to body control. After some time they will be bigger and ready for larger trampolines.