My kids want a trampoline. Should I get one?
The short answer: no. “We strongly discourage the use of backyard trampolines,” says Darshan Patel, MD, Chief, Pediatric Emergency Medicine, Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital at Westchester Medical Center. This stance stems from the number of children’s injuries from trampoline use seen by the hospital’s Pediatric Emergency Department, which has included everything from minor contusions to major head trauma.
For those insisting bouncing provides a good aerobic workout, Dr. Patel counters, “There are other ways to be active. Children will burn more calories if they ride their bike, and safer if they do so while wearing a helmet.” If you must give in to a trampoline, Dr. Patel recommends installing it so it’s built into the ground as opposed to above ground, making sure there’s safety netting to prevent falls, having an adult supervise from outside the netted trampoline, and making sure only one child is using it at a time.
For more on Maria Fareri Children’s Hospital pediatric trauma services, visit www.westchestermedicalcenter.com/pediatric-services