A new recreational trend has been sweeping the country in the last few years. Trampoline parks are popping up everywhere, and they’re taking one of America’s favorite back yard toys to whole new heights.
A trampoline park, at the most basic level, is a giant room filled with interconnected trampolines. There is a jumping floor of trampoline mats, with all the connections covered in safety mats, as well as a row of trampolines going up the wall which allow for more jumping options. Many trampoline parks also include areas for games like dodge ball, a basketball section, and even a foam pit to land in. Parks offer acrobatics classes for people wanting to learn all of those cool flip tricks, and some even host fitness classes, because trampolines make for great aerobic exercise.
Origins of the industry
Surprisingly, the idea for a trampoline park wasn’t thought up by some jumping fan looking to cash in on a popular kid’s activity. It was originally supposed to be a sport. What went on to become Sky Zone trampoline parks was originally designed to be a new spectator sport. The original Sky Zone location in Las Vegas was the arena. While the sport never got off the ground, local kids and thrill seekers did, and an industry was born.
Money drives business
There are now many trampoline parks in the USA, Canada, and around the world. Dozens more open every year, with the majority being franchises. People can get in by paying an hourly rate, and trampoline parks are pretty profitable. Trampoline parks are doing big business because it’s a lot cheaper to take the kids there for a couple of hours then to go to an amusement park, and they’re popping up in cities and suburbs all across the country which makes access easy for people. They are great spots to host a kids’ party, and many parks have party options for parents to take advantage of.
Are they safe?
A big issue every parent should be concerned about is safety. Are trampoline parks safe? The answer is open for debate, but the parks themselves do seem to take safety seriously. As with any kind of physical activity, injuries can happen, and because of the nature of trampolines those injuries can sometimes be serious. It should be noted, however, that broken bones and other serious injuries are rare. The risk is minimal if everyone plays by the rules.
To ensure the rules are followed the parks employ monitors to watch the jumping field, kind of like life guards at a pool. Anyone acting in a dangerous manner is asked to leave. Anyone looking to go to a trampoline park should still be aware of their limitations. Jumping really high and trying to do a couple flips without having been shown how could end badly, but that is really the jumper’s responsibility, not the park’s.
The Industry Leaders
SkyZone, Jump America, and Epic Air are just a few of the many trampoline park options out there right now. The industry is growing so quickly it even has its own association. The International Association of Trampoline Parks was founded to promote safety and growth within the trampoline park industry. Trampoline parks are here to stay and could be a great option for your family’s next recreational outing.