Trampoline safety net enclosure are not mandatory but are highly recommended, especially by organisation like RoSPA . Most garden trampoline are today sold with a protection enclosure to ensure the security of the jumpers.
The netting does not prevent all risk for the user, since some injuries simply happen as a consequence of a bad fall on the jumping mat, but the enclosure guaranties that kids won’t fall off the trampoline, thus avoiding the origin of the accident that result in the biggest injuries.
Falling of the trampoline and striking the ground does not represent the greatest number of accident (16 % of the injuries according to a Canadian SCHIRPT study of 2004), but they represent a great share of hospitalisation (47%). In short : falling from the mat result often in bad injuries and the safety enclosure is a sure way to avoid it.
As for any rules, some exception occur :
- in-ground trampoline do not require surrounding cages as they lay almost at ground level (generally 10 to 15 cm from the ground). Nevertheless, with new sunken models, it is today possible to install an enclosure for a maximum security.
- For a big trampoline (size 14 feet – 427 cm) with a large clear area around (10ft – 3 m) made of soft ground (like thick grass or sand …) and always used by only one jumper at a time, then the net can be considered superfluous.
The enclosure is never the golden solution. Most accidents occur when multiple jumpers use the trampoline at the same time. Collision are indeed the greatest number of hazard, especially when players have a weight difference. In this case, the lighter jumper is the most likely to sustain bruises.
But playing with friends is still more fun than playing alone. This is still possible on a trampoline at the condition that the participants have a similar age and/or similar physical capacities and similar weight (Two 7 and 8 years old siblings playing together does not greatly increase the risks). But in that case, the enclosure is highly recommended to prevent kids off falling from the trampoline.