Trampoline-Related Injuries

A Comparison of Injuries Sustained at Commercial Jump Parks Versus Domestic Home Trampolines

Jesse Doty, MD; Ryan Voskuil, MD; Caleb Davis, MD; Rachel Swafford, MPH; Warren Gardner II, MD; Dirk Kiner, MD; Peter Nowotarski, MD

Disclosures

J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2019;27(1):23-31. 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction

Abstract

Introduction: The nature of trampoline injuries may have changed with the increasing popularity of recreational jump parks.

Methods: A retrospective review was performed evaluating domestic trampoline and commercial jump park injuries over a 2-year period.

Results: There were 439 trampoline injuries: 150 (34%) at jump parks versus 289 (66%) on home trampolines. Fractures and dislocations accounted for 55% of jump park injuries versus 44% of home trampoline injuries. In adults, fractures and dislocations accounted for 45% of jump park injuries versus 17% of home trampoline injuries. More lower extremity fractures were seen at jump parks versus home trampolines in both children and adults. Adults had a 23% surgical rate with jump park injuries versus a 10% surgical rate on home trampolines.

Discussion: Trampoline-related injury distribution included a higher percentage of fractures/dislocations, lower extremity fractures, fractures in adults, and surgical interventions associated with jump parks versus home trampolines.

Level of Evidence: Level III

Introduction

A jump park, or trampoline park, is an interconnected network of trampolines designed specifically for entertainment purposes, similar to a skateboard park or a bicycle park. Jump parks incorporate games, obstacles, and variable geometric configurations of trampolines to enhance the jumper's experience. They may include modifications of more traditional sports, such as basketball goals, volleyball nets, or gymnastic balance beams. Jump parks have gained traction locally, nationally, and even globally in the past 5 years.

In 2009, there were only a few operational jump parks. However, by the end of 2014, there were approximately 350 operating jump parks in the United States alone.[1] Recent estimates suggest that jump park admission rates may be nearly 150,000 to 200,000 participants per year.[1]

Nearly all jump parks require an injury liability waiver before admission and many parks cite a 2002 report estimating a rate of two injuries per 1,000 home trampoline users.[2] These data are used by the jump park industry to justify claims of superior safety profiles compared with other sports such as soccer, which has an injury rate of nearly 21 per 1,000 players.[3]

In 2014, there were roughly 100,000 emergency department (ED) visits related to trampoline use across the United States.[4] A single urban trauma center reported approximately 31 trampoline-related ambulance responses annually.[5] A potential rise in severe injuries at a time when jump park popularity is skyrocketing has increased media attention and ignited public interest about the serious nature of jump park injuries.

No published reports have exclusively examined traumatic jump park-related injuries and comparing them with injuries attributed to home trampolines. Little to no public data define adult trampoline injury rates. The purpose of this study was to describe the epidemiology of jump park-related injuries compared with domestic trampoline injuries, with particular emphasis on the injury distribution in adults. This information may lead to increased public awareness of the potential for serious injuries and permanently disabling outcomes for those who participate in recreational trampoline use, including commercial jump park activities.

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