Home trampolines can provide hours of fun for the entire family. They encourage every member of the household to get away from those ever-present electronic devices and get out into the fresh air, as well as enjoy some cardiovascular exercise which many people need in order to bring some balance to our increasingly sedentary lives. However, trampolines can also be dangerous if some common-sense safety precautions are not taken. So in order to keep your family (and other users of the trampoline) safe, here are some tips to ensure a great trampoline experience.
Firstly, before anyone uses the trampoline it is essential that it is checked thoroughly to ensure that all parts are working correctly. Make sure that all the springs (or bungee cords) are securely attached and in good condition. Loose springs can cause the mat to act in a dangerous manner, making the bounce unpredictable. This can result in user injury. Missing or broken springs can also cause the mat to tear – making injury almost inevitable.
It is highly recommended that children under the age of five do not use full-size trampolines. The risk of injury caused by the powerful bouncing action is simply too great. It is also worth noting that no more than one person should be allowed on the trampoline at a time. Most injuries to children happen when more than one user is on the trampoline. Those caregivers who would like the youngsters to join in the trampolining fun should shop around for trampolines that have been specifically designed for younger bodies.
No matter the age of the person who will be using the trampoline, the need for safety equipment is one that simply cannot be ignored. Most manufacturers have accessories that can make the trampolining experience more fun and a lot safer. These manufacturers supply padding that covers the springs – avoiding the dreaded ‘leg through the gap experience’ and other dangers. Another essential accessory is the safety enclosure net (especially with youngsters involved). However, it is essential to note that supervision is always required. the majority of injuries happen when kids are left to their own devices. Also, make sure that those under the age of 10 are well aware of the rules governing the use of the trampoline (such as the ‘only one person at a time’ rule). There are other rules such as no backflips, stunts, or overly acrobatic moves, no other objects on the trampoline (balls, etc), and no food or drink.
One other common mistake when using an above-ground trampoline is a lack of pre-bounce inspection. Check to see if it is the equipment is level and that the mat is clear of debris. Make sure that the mat is well clear of posts, fences, trees and other potential impact dangers.
Some precautions and common sense can prevent most injuries when using a trampoline. However, never forget that an unsupervised trampoline is a dangerous one – and don’t allow anyone who is intoxicated in any way to use the trampoline. So be careful – and go out and enjoy some fresh air and healthy exercise.