It is well known that a backyard trampoline is not the safest piece of equipment for children to play on. While injuries on trampolines in the pediatric population abound, especially this time of year, researchers have identified what pediatricians worry is “an emerging concern” — trampoline parks. A new study in Pediatrics lays out the problem:

Indoor trampoline parks typically consist of wall-to-wall connected trampolines with padded walls or angled trampoline walls. Over the past several years, indoor trampoline parks have increased in number and popularity. Despite the risk of injury with trampoline use, trampoline parks are popular for children and families. According to the International Association of Trampoline Parks, in 2011 there were only 35 to 40 trampoline parks in existence, compared with 280 in 2014. Trampoline parks continue to spring up at a rate of 5 or 6 a month, with expectations of ∼450 trampoline parks in the United States by the end of 2015.


Ashley Welch says the study found that 9% of children who showed up to emergency departments with trampoline park injuries required admission to the hospital. Spinal cord injuries, skull fractures, and open fractures were the most serious injuries reported:

For the study, Kasmire and her colleagues analyzed emergency room reports from a national database to estimate the total number of trampoline-related injuries both from parks and trampolines at home.

They found that although injuries from home trampolines remained steady over the study period, emergency visits from trampoline parks skyrocketed. There were nearly 7,000 trampoline park-related injuries in 2014, compared to about 580 in 2010.

Patients injured at trampoline parks were more likely to be males, with an average age of 13.

Most of the injuries were leg injuries, including strains and fractures. Kids injured at trampoline parks were less likely to have head injuries than those injured on trampolines at home, but the severity of park-related injuries was concerning, the authors said.


Be careful out there!


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