Trampolines among playground risks parents should know

Playground risks parents need to be aware of, including why trampolines are a risk.
For many kids going to the park, swinging from the monkey bars is pretty fun.

But we can't ignore the risks that come with playgrounds. FOX 2 has teamed up with Beaumont Children's Hospital for Summer Safety Week and here's what you need to know.

Whether at a park or in the backyard, every year more than 200,000 kids end up in the emergency room because of playground related injuries.

About 75 percent of the time, the injuries happen on public playground equipment.

FOX 2 talked to pediatric surgeon Nathan Novotny about some simple things we can do to make sure the kids are safe. 

"First off we look for what is age appropriate for that playground," Novotny said. "Second, you need to look at maintenance - how well it is kept up.  And then as you mention, look at where your child will land. If 70 percent of these injuries come from falls, you have to look at where they're going to end up landing."

You want to walk around the landing surface and make sure it can cushion a fall. Also - even though metal slides are a thing of the past, on a hot day touch the surface of of the equipment to make sure it's not too hot. 

And kids, as far as trampolines, you are not going to like what  Novotny has to say. 

"Trampolines I think, are some of the worst things invented for children," he said. "We see so many injuries, extremity fractures. We also see spine injuries from trampolines."

Novotny says his daughters will never be allowed on a trampoline.

"Even with the mesh around it keeps you from falling on the ground," he said. "But it doesn't keep you from bumping into other kids or falling and breaking your ankle as you are landing awkwardly. 

The American Academy of Pediatrics says don't buy a backyard trampoline but if you do, there should be adult supervision, only one jumper at a time and no somersaults allowed. 


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