Trampoline Park Injuries Cause Jump in E.R. Visits
According to Reuters Health, there is a correlation between the growing popularity of trampoline parks and recent increases in the number of trampoline-related emergency room visits.
About the Trampoline Park Injuries Study
Lead study author Dr. Kathryn Kasmire, a researcher at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center in Hartford, states that trampoline park injuries are increasing due to their growing popularity and increasing availability.
From 2010 to 2014, the average annual number of emergency room visits pertaining to trampoline injuries was close to 92,000. The vast majority occurred at home – however, injuries at trampoline parks surged more than 10-fold during the study period.
The study found that in 2014, trampoline parks accounted for almost 7,000 emergency room visits. Nationwide, the number of trampoline parks surged from about 40 in 2011 to 280 in 2014, noted researchers in the journal Pediatrics.
In order to assess how the surge in trampoline parks is influencing injuries, researchers examined data from a nationwide registry of injuries. They excluded data from gymnastics or competitive trampoline injuries, as well as from sports facilities that offer a variety of recreational sports rather than simply wall-to-wall trampolines.
Trampoline Park Injuries Broken Down by Age and Type
Children aged 6 to 17 accounted for the majority of injuries at home and at trampoline parks.
The most common trampoline injuries included sprains and fractures, irrespective of location, but sprains were 61 percent more likely at trampoline parks. In addition, dislocated joints were twice more likely to occur at trampoline parks.
The study demonstrated that fractures were much more common in younger children than in teens and adults at trampoline parks. Fractures accounted for almost half of injuries for children under 6-years. However, younger children were less likely than older teens and adults to sustain sprains.
Further Information on Trampoline Park Injuries
- Researchers lacked complete data on the location injury, which the authors conclude may mean they underestimated the number of emergency room visits tied to trampoline parks.
- Another limitation of the study is the lack of data on how often people use trampoline parks. Authors note that this made it impossible to calculate an injury rate based on the number of hours or episodes of participation.
- The American Academy of Pediatrics (APP) recommends against recreational trampoline use due in large part to the injury risk. When trampolines are used for recreation purposes, children should have constant adult supervision and adequate protective padding, and there should be one jumper at a time. The APP also recommends that children should avoid flips and somersaults.
- Sean Bandzar of Weill Cornell Medical College in New York also points out that even when children are under supervision, trampoline parks might be more dangerous because children have a better chance of crashing into each other.