Study: Trampoline parks tied to jump in emergency room visits

Trampoline parks are hotspots for injury because multiple people will bounce at the same time


HARTFORD, Conn. — A new study says that indoor trampoline parks are more likely to result in ER visits than home trampoline sets.

The study, published in Pediatrics, also found that trampoline parks, which are lined wall-to-wall with trampolines, were more likely to cause lower-body open fractures and spinal cord injuries than trampoline sets that people use at home.

"I don't think trampoline park injuries are increasing because they are especially dangerous compared to home trampolines, but rather because of their growing popularity and the increasing number/availability of these facilities," lead study author Dr. Kathryn Kasmire tells Scientific American.

Trampoline park injuries have soared as the indoor jumping trend has spread. (Photo/AP/Rick Bowmer)
Trampoline park injuries have soared as the indoor jumping trend has spread. (Photo/AP/Rick Bowmer)

Trampoline parks are a relatively recent phenomenon: less than than 40 parks existed in 2011, but 280 had opened by 2014. As a result, trampoline park injuries have skyrocketed over a similar time period. Emergency rooms saw nearly 7,000 trampoline park injuries in 2014, compared to about 580 in 2010.

Trampoline parks are hotspots for injury because multiple people will bounce at the same time, raising the chance of a collision. Certain facilities will also have more lax policies toward somersaults or flips.

"Trampolines were originally developed as a device for use by acrobats, gymnasts, fighter pilots,” said Dr. Gary Smith, lead author of the AAP recommendations on trampolines. “They were never intended to be used as a backyard toy."

The study observes that 92,000 ER visits occurred as a result of a trampoline.

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