When it comes to acquiring and setting up a trampoline, safety is of utmost importance. This begs the question of which is safer an in-ground or above-ground trampoline? Well, to accurately answer this question, let’s first briefly analyze the two.
In-Ground Trampoline – It is a trampoline engineered to go in the ground for stability and to blend in with your landscape. To set it up, you dig up some space in your yard deep enough to accommodate it and level with the ground. When accessing it kids can simply do so by stepping on it. This is quite convenient, especially for younger kids.
Above Ground Trampoline – Just as its name suggests it is a trampoline that stands above the ground with the support of stilts and props. To access it, kids will need to climb a ladder or use a stool.
Which is Safer?
Mentally picturing the two, some people imagine the in-ground trampoline to be safer than the above-ground trampoline considering that the former is more stable on the ground. However, the truth is each type of trampoline bears its advantages and risks.
Above Ground Trampoline
The main joy in a trampoline is getting to jump as high as you can. Undoubtedly, above-ground trampolines provide a high bounce rate compared to their counterparts (see our Giantex trampoline review). Children may therefore consider them more fun. Whenever, they are not in use, for example during winter, you can simply remove them and fold them up (see Tips on How to Setup a Trampoline). This protects them from agents of weather such as wind and water which tend to weaken their structure making them unsafe for play.
Also, the fact that the stilts and props sit above ground makes it easier for you to monitor and maintain them. You can easily notice anything that falls out of place and rectify it early enough.
The trampoline comes with height-related risks in case someone were to fall off it. It is also quite difficult for someone to climb on to the trampoline, especially if someone else is already bouncing on it, the chances of a slip and fall are high. Additionally, above-ground trampolines are more prone to being blown away by the winds and resulting in property damage and accidents (see How to Properly Anchor a Trampoline).
When it comes to space beneath it, kids may at times store their play toys, bikes, or other things. These can be dangerous and potentially impact the functionality of the trampoline.
The fact that this trampoline is positioned on the ground eliminates fall-related risks. Therefore children are at liberty to enter and exit the trampoline easily and without fear of falling. This makes it ideal, especially, for the younger ones, provided they meet the age recommendations for using a trampoline in the first place.
The risk of falling may be reduced but it is not eliminated. Vigorous jumpers can still fall off and hit the ground thus injuring themselves. Luckily, they will not get as hurt since they fall a shorter distance. In-ground trampolines need a gap for springs and proper ventilation, thus there is a danger of kids falling on these and injuring themselves. Also, there is the risk of items falling into these spaces. Children love carrying around things to play with, and if any of them happens to accidentally fall into these gaps, they may hurt themselves trying to get it.
Inground trampolines are highly vulnerable to factors such as rain and rust. Water pools are likely to collect in their holes during rainy or snowy seasons, which may result in the trampoline’s parts rusting and getting weaker. If not checked and acted upon, the trampoline may give way during playtime and result in an accident. This necessitates that you regularly remove the trampoline to ensure that everything is as it should be beneath it. The airflow beneath the trampoline should also at all times be adequate, otherwise jumping on it may feel rigid and uncomfortable leading to muscle aches.
When it comes to safety both options have their merits and demerits. However, the risks associated with an above-ground trampoline slightly outweigh those of an in-ground trampoline especially when you have smaller kids. The latter is considered more convenient as they can be able to access it without your help, and also height-related risks and injuries are significantly reduced.