Orthopaedic Surgeons Issue Trampoline Safety Advice
ROSEMONT, Ill., March 26, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Yankees baseball player Joba Chamberlain underwent surgery late last week after suffering a career-threatening ankle injury while jumping on a trampoline with his 5-year-old son at a children’s play facility in Tampa. Chamberlain was released from St. Joseph’s Hospital on Sunday and will spend the next six weeks in a cast as he recovers from surgery.
“Although trampolines can be fun for both kids and adults, they pose a high risk for injuries, especially when two or more people jump at one time,” says John Purvis, MD, orthopaedic surgeon and spokesperson for the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS). “Orthopaedic surgeons recommended that trampolines not be used in home environments or in outdoor playgrounds because of the high risk of injuries this activity.”
In an effort to prevent, rather than treat, injuries sustained from trampolines, the AAOS produced an audio public service message and position statement about trampoline safety, and recommends the following guidelines:
- Use of trampolines for physical education, competitive gymnastics, diving training and other similar activities requires careful adult supervision and proper safety measures.
- Trampolines should not be used for unsupervised recreational activity.
- Competent adult supervision and instruction is needed for children at all times.
- Only one participant should use a trampoline at any time.
- Spotters should be present when participants are jumping. Somersaults or high-risk maneuvers should be avoided without proper supervision and instruction; these maneuvers should be done only with proper use of protective equipment, such as a harness.
- The trampoline-jumping surface should be placed at ground level.
- The supporting bars, strings and surrounding landing surfaces should have adequate protective padding.
- Equipment should be checked regularly for safety conditions.
- Safety net enclosures may give a false sense of security – most injuries occur on the trampoline surface.
- Trampolines are not recommended for children under 6 years of age.
- Make sure trampoline ladders are removed after use to prevent unsupervised access by young children.
SOURCE American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons