Trampoline parks have become the new trend, rising in popularity in recent years. But injuries and accidents related to trampolines have also jumped, a new study finds.
Recent research discovered that trips to the emergency room caused by injuries at trampoline parks have gone up from just short of 600 in 2010 to almost 7,000 in 2014 – a twelve-fold increase. The number of trampoline parks in the United States has also increased from about 40 in 2011 to 280 in 2014, USA Today reports.
The most common recorded ER injuries are sprains and dislocations. Some of the most severe cases involved skull and leg fractures, and spinal cord trauma, said Kathryn Kasmire, study author and pediatrician at the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center. Kasmire said the serious injuries in some cases led to surgery and paralysis. One in 11 children or young adults admitted to the emergency room for trampoline accidents was admitted to the hospital, she added.
The International Association of Trampoline Parks said that this is expected because of the proliferation of trampoline parks in the past few years. The group released a statement, saying,
We believe that the positives of youth recreational sports far outweigh the negatives, and we are actively engaged in programs aimed at promoting the safety and well-being of jumpers who visit our member parks.
Kasmire did admit that these parks have done a good job on safety, making sure that children don’t fall off the trampolines and reducing the likelihood of head injuries because the floors are overed with a bouncy covering. The floor though, can heighten the risk for other injuries if someone jumping lands between two trampolines, she said.
She also noted that the study could not accurately determine the likelihood of someone getting injured at a trampoline park, saying that it’s common knowledge that any kind of trampoline is relatively dangerous for kids.
The American Academy of Pediatrics says to refrain from trampoline use for children, and that if children will use them, that they should not do flips or have more than one person jumping at a time on a single trampoline. They added that adult supervision is needed and trampolines should always have proper padding.
The study was published in Pediatrics.