Emergency Room Visits Jump as Trampoline Parks Gain Popularity
Trampoline parks have become increasingly popular, leading to a soaring number of emergency room visits for injures sustained at these venues, according to a report titled, “Trampoline Park and Home Trampoline Injuries,” that was published in the September 2016 issue of Pediatrics.
The study found that U.S. emergency room visits for trampoline park-related injuries rose to 6,932 in 2014, up from 581 in 2010. Patients injured at trampoline parks to were more likely to be males, an average age of 13 and afflicted with injuries frequently involving lower extremity sprains and fractures.
More serious injuries included open fractures and spinal cord injuries. While less likely to sustain head injuries than those injured on home trampolines, patients injured at trampoline parks showed higher odds of hospital admission.
Study authors call for additional strategies to prevent injuries at trampoline parks, where safety guidelines vary. While most trampoline injuries occur at home, those numbers did not vary over the study period as opposed to the rise in park-related injuries.
In 2011, approximately 40 trampoline parks existed in the U.S., as compared to 280 in 2014, according to the International Association of Trampoline Parks. The association estimates that five or six new parks open every month.
An American Academy of Pediatrics’ policy statement on trampoline safety recommends against children’s recreational trampoline use, but states that if they are used, safety measures should include constant adult supervision, adequate protective padding, one jumper per trampoline at a time and avoidance of flips and somersaults.