Bounce Safely Into Summer: 5 Tips to Maximize Trampoline and Bounce House Safety

kid-on-trampoline

By Winter Johnson

During summer, kids are eager to let loose their pent-up energy with good, bouncy fun. But are trampolines and bounce houses safe?

“During warm weather months, we treat at least one trampoline- or bounce house-related injury every other week, on average,” says Meghan Imrie, MD, a pediatric orthopaedic surgeon at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford.  “These vary from sprains, bone bruises and fractures, to more serious injuries requiring surgery, and typically result from kids colliding with someone else or landing badly.”

There are more than 110,000 trampoline and bounce house injuries a year reported nationwide. The steady increase in these injuries can be attributed to the rise in trampolining since it was accepted in as an Olympic sport in 2000, as well as venues that offer plenty of trampolines for kids wanting to jump.

“Kids are always riding the line between just having fun and pushing boundaries — and trying not to get hurt in the process,” she adds.

Dr. Imrie’s recommends the following tips for families who love to jump:

  1. Trampoline jumpers should be at least 6 years old. “The official cutoff age is 5 or 6, but I also use a child’s body awareness, coordination, balance, and size as an indicator of whether a child should jump or not,” Imrie says. This is important because many children younger than 6 do not have the balance to avoid coming down in an awkward position, Imrie noted.
  2. Allow only one person on the trampoline at a time.  “Allowing only one kid at a time may be less fun but it is safer,” Imrie asserts. With a trampoline, the weight differential between two children can cause the lighter child to be launched out of control.

    For safe bounce house fun,
    be sure that jumpers are about the same size and weight, as the smaller child could easily fall out of the house through the opening.
  3. Ensure jumpers are supervised by an adult. This is ideally a parent or someone that the parent trusts.
  4. Follow equipment safety instructions. These can vary by manufacturer. For trampolines, they typically include removing any ladders, covering springs and hinges and putting up a net enclosure. For bounce houses, precautions include securely anchoring the house and having mats around the entrance and anywhere else a child could fall.
  5. Don’t attempt tricks. “Leave somersaults, flips and other stunts to the gymnasts,” Imrie suggests.

Click to learn more about the work of Meghan Imrie, MD.

Authors

7 Responses to “Bounce Safely Into Summer: 5 Tips to Maximize Trampoline and Bounce House Safety”

  1. Larry Dunn

    Thank you for your tips but adults are at more risk on trampolines than children because children’s bones are still developing so say that a child breaks his or her arm it will mold in the exact proper place it was meant to be.

    Reply
  2. Michael

    I like what you had to say here about how trampoline users should be 6 years old. As you mentioned, you can base it off of the child’s body awareness as well. My son really wants a bouncy house for his 6th birthday, and I think that this information is going to be beneficial. Thanks!

    Reply
  3. Jessica

    My son’s birthday last Saturday, i booked bounce house rentals and enjoy a lot with my son.

    Reply
  4. Charlie Buy Houses - http://www.garygrimmsellshouses.com/

    My son is turning 7 next month preparing for our Big party, Thanks for this post I am considering this as well just checking if its really safe for kids! Thanks!!

    Reply
  5. Margaret Rodgers

    Hi, I am Margaret Rodgers. Thanks for your great article. Actually, My kids are zeal of playing with the bounce house. When I see their joy knew no bounds then I feel very happy. I think they are much more secure than the toys you might give your kids. Toy parts can be harmful if swallowed and this is not the case with any bouncy products. My doctors have also said that kids who want to grow taller should be consistent in jumping and reaching for higher objects this stretches out the bones improving their height.

    Reply
  6. Alden smith

    Thanks for sharing these safety tips with us. Surely these basic precautions reduce some risk of mishappening upto some extent and this I feel personally while I using my Trampoline daily for 1 hr.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)