Study records big bounce in trampoline-related injuries

Trampoline-related injuries on the rise across the US.

The proliferation of trampoline parks across the United States has led to a huge increase in the number of emergency room visits due to trampoline-related injuries during the period from 2010 through 2014, according to an article on USA Today.

Visits to the ERs jumped from a total of just under 600 in 2010, to a whopping nearly 7,000 in 2014, the last year in which such data was available.  Correspondingly, the number of trampoline parks across the nation also rose from 40 in 2011 to 280 by 2014.  However, the study found that the majority of the injuries occurred at home, instead of at the trampoline parks.

A new study, just published in Pediatrics, noted one of every eleven children or young adults who went to emergency rooms for trampoline-related injuries were later admitted into the hospital, according to pediatrician and study author Kathryn Kasmire.

Kasmire, of the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, said sprains and dislocations were the most common types of injuries recorded, but some were quite serious, such as skull and leg fractures and even spinal cord trauma.  She added a few of the injuries led to paralysis and surgeries.

The International Association of Trampoline Parks said the jump in injuries was not unexpected, due to an increase in the number of parks and trampoline-related activities.  The group released a statement that said they believed 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 added the researchers already knew that a trampoline is a relatively dangerous activity for children, but admitted the industry had done a good job of making sure youngsters did not fall off the trampolines, and covered the floor surfaces with a bouncy material to reduce the likelihood of head trauma.

Additionally, the American Academy of Pediatrics says they advise parents against letting children use trampolines, but if they do, they should not be allowed to do flips and should allow only one jumper on a trampoline at a time.  The group also advised parents to make sure the trampolines had proper padding and to have an adult supervise the activity.

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