Many Australian households and parks now have trampolines for exercise and recreational use. But research has found about 500 children who suffered injuries from the use of indoor trampoline parks in 3 states from 2012 to 2017.
Injuries cover fractures, wounds, concussions, and potentially debilitating brain and spine damage due to various causes like falls, slips, and faulty designs. Following these expert tips will help reduce the risk of trampoline injuries.
Look for the Certified Standard Logo
Since 2003, the Australian Standard (AS) for Trampolines recognizes the increasing risk associated with trampoline use and thus outlines the product design and assembly requirements for safety (e.g., nets, support mats, etc).
AS 4989 Trampolines for domestic use specifically creates a certified standard logo to guide domestic buyers on product selection. Remember to look for that logo, always.
Install with an Expert
Domestic trampolines are easy to assemble, particularly the mini versions. But when you’re unsure about the installation, get help either from the manufacturer or a contractor. Basic instructions can be tricky.
For example, trampolines are to be installed on evenly flat non-concrete surfaces for stability, but elevations and underground structural conditions often escape the eyes of ordinary men, without proper tools and knowledge.
The same holds true for the other safety requirements like 5-meter vertical clearance, 1500-mm impact area outside the frame, and in-ground installation. Consider hiring a technical person an investment.
Do Regular Checks
Trampolines, either indoor or outdoor, are prone to everyday wear and tear caused by sun exposure, corrosion, frequent use, and other factors. There’s no damage so little to be left unheeded where trampoline safety is concerned.
Protruding springs can scrape the legs of a child, worn-out nets can trap toes or fingers leading to falls, and rickety frames can bring the entire structure down.
So, thoroughly check the trampoline conditions before every use. One never knows what damage was done by the previous user.
Besides physical inspection, perform monthly preventive maintenance comprehensive enough to cover structural, functional, and even foundational (e.g. underground termite control) repairs and reinforcements.
Demonstrate Proper Use
Even adults, not just kids, must first witness a demonstration before using any type of trampoline. Jumping looks easy, but there’s a reason why the seemingly harmless trampolines come with lengthy manuals.
Demonstration videos or live demonstrations are both helpful for visual and accurate instructions. In the absence of those, you can ask an expert to supervise you while trying the trampoline.
Tedious, yes, but you’ll learn techniques, increase self-confidence, and even handle first aides when incidents arise.
At all times and at all costs, there should be spotters or observers around every time the trampoline is used. This way, basic safety rules like “one at a time use”, “jumping onto the trampoline not allowed”, and “no shoes policy” will be strictly implemented.
This arrangement also ensures that in the case of accidents, immediate help is available. In households, you can designate an adult to act as a spotter and recommend your trampoline user to wear safety wear.
Safety is an utmost priority, so while these five expert tips are good preventive measures, you are encouraged to seek out constant safety advices and updates from different sources.
Protecting loved ones from damaging trampoline-related injuries should be an ongoing process, after all, not a one-off seminar experience.