According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, recreational use of trampolines
is a huge injury risk to kids. Considering that at-home use has grown,
partially due to these products becoming more available, this is cause
for concern—especially as AAP says that injuries continue to happen
even after medical groups have discouraged trampoline use and warn people
to be careful.
At the Gilbert Law Group, our child injury lawyers handle cases involving products that are dangerous or defective. Sometimes the product defect is a result of a malfunction or flaw. Other product injuries occur because the defect or danger is inherent to the product’s design. Other product issues are a result of a failure to provide correct/complete instructions about proper use, not warning about certain dangers, or improper marketing.
AAP’s statement, published in Pediatrics, update these trampoline recommendations that were made in 1999, that led to the addition of certain safety feature in an attempt to combat the risks. These safety measures, however, created a “false sense of security.”
The group is recommending that kids avoid recreational trampoline use completely unless the child is involved in an actual sports training program that comes with proper supervision, coaching, and safety measures that have already been implemented.
Trampoline Injury Facts from 2009:
• 70 trampoline injuries per every 100,000 kids in the 0-4 age group.
• 160 injuries per every 100,000 kids in the 5- 14 age group.
• In total, about 98,000 injuries a year.
• 3-14% of injuries result in hospitalization.
• 1 in 200 trampoline injuries involve permanent neurological damage.
• Falls make up 40% of trampoline injuries (While manufacturers have sold perimeter enclosures, such as netting for trampolines, as added safety measures, researchers say there is no proof that these reduce injury risk–climbing onto the netting may even increase the risk.)
• Most at risk of trampoline injuries are kids in the under 6 age group
Most injuries appear to happen when there is more than one person jumping on the trampoline at the same time. This usually occurs when there is a smaller and a heavier person jumping together. The impact of the larger person may propel the smaller individual higher, increasing the chances of a rougher landing on the mat, which is where most of the trampoline injuries happen.
Common trampoline injuries include:
• Soft-tissue injuries
• Bone injuries
• Ankle injuries
• Head injuries
• Spinal injuries (especially when botched flips and summersaults are involved)
• Chest injuries
A number of studies have shown that up to half of trampoline injuries happen when there is an adult present.
Also, while there are now places that people can go to pay to play on a trampoline, there have been numerous personal injury lawsuits filed over injuries also sustained at these facilities, with plaintiffs alleging inadequate safety measures and poor supervision.
Pediatricians warn families against trampolines, Reuters, September 24, 2012
Pediatricians warn against trampoline use at home, citing injury risks, CBS News, September 24, 2012