Spring is nearly here, and garden trampolines will be popping up in gardens around the world ready for summer. Garden trampolines have had bad press in the past, and their safety has been called into question. The truth is garden trampolines provide a great, fun form of exercise for children, and they are perfectly safe as long as you are careful and follow some simple safety rules. We look at 5 easy ways you can be sure that your child is safe on a trampoline.

1. Position the trampoline in a safe place
Siting your trampoline can be a difficult task, especially if you have bought a large trampoline or if you have a lot of garden features (pond etc).

Firstly, make sure you choose the right sized trampoline for your garden. Trampolines are available in a wide range of sizes from 15ft to 6ft. 15ft trampolines are suitable for large families with large gardens, whereas 6ft trampolines are ideal for young children, adult fitness and smaller gardens. Before buying a trampoline, try and plan where you will put the trampoline.

Find a flat area free from fences, trees, ponds, flower beds and other hazards. Stick to the 2ft rule – leave a clear 2ft strip around your trampoline, which must be kept clear of bikes, balls, anything really. This will prevent further injury if your child does accidentally bounce off (this won’t happen if you use a safety enclosure – see point 2).

Put the trampoline on a soft, energy-absorbing ground, like grass or bark chip. Avoid hard surfaces unless you are able to place a crash mat down.

Once you have found a safe place to put your trampoline, tie it down with an anchor kit to stop it from moving when it is used.

2. Get a trampoline enclosure
Trampoline safety enclosures are the perfect solution to stopping your child from accidentally bouncing off the trampoline. They also stop pets jumping on the trampoline.

Safety enclosures are available in a range of sizes to fit most garden trampolines and are easy to put up.

Don’t want an enclosure? There are several other options:

  •   Sink your trampoline into the ground.

This is an increasingly popular option, with sunken trampolines being both safer and more aesthetically pleasing. But don’t underestimate the amount of work this will take, and the large hole that will be left in your garden!

  • Get a trampoline tent or play house

Trampoline tents are all the latest rage, allowing children to bounce inside a tent. They also mean children can use the trampoline in the rain without getting wet.

3. Use a trampoline skirt
A trampoline skirt is a piece of material that wraps around the legs of the trampoline. It serves several purposes. Mainly, it will stop toddlers from crawling under the trampoline and getting injured. Pets might also seek shelter under a trampoline on a hot day, and could get hurt. Neither a toddler nor a pet would have the danger awareness needed to avoid the situation.

Trampoline skirts are useful too. They usually come with pockets which can be used to keep shoes out of the mud on a wet day, or to store mobile phones. This is much safer (for the item and the bouncer) than keeping them on the trampoline.

4. Limit the number of bouncers
Only one child should bounce on a trampoline at any time. It can be very tempting for children to want to bounce with a sibling or friend, or to play a game, and the trampoline should be strong enough to take the weight, but it should not be encouraged.

Around 75% of accidents occur when more than one person is on a trampoline, with the lighter child five times more likely to fall victim to injury. Not only is the child more likely to bounce off the edge, but could also crash into the other bouncer.

Give your children the freedom to bounce but keep an eye on them as well.

5. Have lessons
There are hundreds of trampoline clubs around the country. Trampoline clubs help children make the most out of their garden trampoline, as well as learning how to use it safely. Most coaches are professionally trained in Trampolining, and your child will also meet friends who are interested in the same hobby.

At the trampoline club, your child will learn simple, yet very effective safety tips such as; not using bouncing as a way of exiting the trampoline, remove all jewellery, watches, scarves (anything that can catch), and much more.

This article was provided by Atlantic Trampolines, a leading supplier of trampolines and trampoline accessories