11 min read
If you’re looking to invest in a trampoline, you want one that you can confidently let your kids jump on safely.
In terms of how your trampoline is installed, there are two types of backyard trampolines, in ground trampolines and above ground trampolines, and both differ greatly from each other.
Trampoline safety is one of the main concerns among parents looking to invest in a trampoline, and since safety is such a paramount issue, we will be analyzing the truth of a common question: Are in ground trampolines safer?
To answer this question thoroughly, we will lean on our decades of experience as a springless trampoline innovator and manufacturer. Over the years, we have helped thousands of customers find the ideal trampoline that keeps their jumpers safe while they make everlasting memories.
This honest assessment of the safety of inground trampolines will help assist you in your journey to finding the right, and safe, trampoline for your family.
What Are In Ground Trampolines?
If you’re not familiar with in ground trampolines, they are fairly easy to understand. In ground trampolines are installed into the ground rather than above the ground.
There are various reasons why you would want to install a trampoline into the ground. Inground trampolines make it easier to get on/off the trampoline, they’re more durable against windy weather conditions and they don’t stick out as much as an above ground trampoline in your backyard.
Here is an example of an in ground trampoline, courtesy of in-ground trampolines:
3 Safety Benefits of In Ground Trampolines
To answer the “Are in ground trampolines safer?” question, we will first go over the positive safety features of in ground trampolines:
Eliminate Falling Injuries
A significant source of trampoline injuries occurs when a person falls off the trampoline: About 27%-39% of trampoline injuries are caused by falls, according to Policygenius.
Because in ground trampolines are ground level, they eliminate the chance of falling from the jumping mat to the ground. This reigns as arguably the superior safety advantage of in ground trampolines.
While in ground trampolines eliminate falling off the trampoline, holes or tears in the mat could lead to falling through the trampoline. Make sure to periodically inspect the trampoline mat for rips or tears and buy a replacement mat, if necessary.
You can also jump high and land on the metal frame or springs—something we will go over more later on.
More Resistant to Inclement Weather
Another safety advantage revolves around the structure of in ground trampolines. Because they are installed into the ground, an in ground trampoline is less likely to be affected by inclement weather conditions.
In ground trampolines are not going to be blown away by the wind, and if you place it under a shaded area, it can also avoid damage from the sun (ultraviolet light can be damaging to trampoline parts, like the springs, padding, frame, etc.)
Parts that are underground could become rotten or damaged because of soil, moisture or lack of airflow---something to examine regularly if you install a trampoline into the ground.
Enclosure Net May Not Be Necessary
A third safety benefit to in ground trampolines is they don’t require an enclosure net like above ground trampolines do.
This is important for safety reasons because you don’t have to worry about the net deteriorating and exposing a potential falling area. You also don’t have to upkeep the net and buy a new one if the old net is no longer functioning.
While they are not required, you can add an enclosure net (We always recommend an enclosure net) on in ground trampolines to protect against injuries that may be caused by the surrounding area of the trampoline. See below for a picture of an inground trampoline with an enclosure net (courtesy of Capital Play):
3 Safety Concerns of In Ground Trampolines
You’ve seen the safety benefits of in ground trampolines, now let’s turn it over and cover the safety concerns of trampolines that are installed at ground level:
Spring/Frame Injuries Can Occur
One of the main areas of concern with in ground trampolines is the possibility of suffering a pinching injury from the trampoline springs or taking a spill on the metal trampoline frame.
See the photo below for an example, courtesy of :
Notice how there are gaps between the jumping mat and the safety padding that covers the spring on the top left-hand side of the trampoline. That would be an area where toes or hands can get caught in the springs, resulting in a painful pinching injury.
Furthermore, if the padding covering the springs starts to wear down, the springs could become further exposed, which will increase the chances of a pinching injury.
Area Around the Trampoline May Contain Hazards
If you’re installing an in ground trampoline, you must be careful about where you place it. Although in ground trampolines eliminate falling injuries, you can still suffer an injury from the area around the trampoline.
If you install an in ground trampoline next to a tree, concrete or shed, you run the risk of an injury caused by external surroundings.
Make sure to find a clear area (the picture in the last section is a decent example) where there are no external objects that can cause injury. You can also further avoid this problem by adding an enclosure net to the trampoline.
Common Trampoline Injuries Can Still Occur
No matter which type of outdoor trampoline you buy—in ground or above ground—there is always the chance of suffering one of the common trampoline injuries.
These include fractures, sprains, strains or other bodily injuries. According to Policygenius, the most common type of injury types are soft tissue injuries (51.9%) and fractures (34.6%).
Another common trampoline injury that can occur on an in ground trampoline is collisions or injuries that happen while multiple people are jumping on the trampoline simultaneously.
According to Policygenius, 75% of trampoline injuries occur when multiple children are jumping on the trampoline.
The solution to help mitigate the risks of common trampoline injuries are to establish simple trampoline rules, such as a “One Jumper at a Time” Rule and no flips or stunts.
Are In Ground Trampolines Safer Than Above Ground Trampolines?
When people ask, “Are in ground trampolines safer?” they really mean, “Are in ground trampolines safer than above ground trampolines?”
An above ground trampoline, courtesy of Springfree Trampoline:
The answer is complicated because it depends on the type of above ground trampoline you’re talking about.
A cheap trampoline (around $200-$400) that sits above the ground is almost always going to be less safe than an in ground trampoline. Most mid trampolines (around $400-$800) will also be less safe than trampolines installed into the ground.
However, there is a debate to be had when it comes to the safety of premium above ground trampolines vs. in ground trampolines. Take our Springfree Trampolines, for example.
Springfree Trampolines include a springless design, a net that flexes when jumped into, a “hidden” frame that cannot be hit by the jumper, a mat with no hard edges and enclosure rods that take the place of hard metal poles. They are also the only trampoline to eliminate 90% of product-related injuries.
That being the case, a Springfree Trampoline is arguably safer than an in ground trampoline, where the springs, frame and external surroundings present injury risks. In fact, Springfree Trampolines have proven to be, by independent research, the safest trampoline on the market.
The Verdict: Generally speaking, in ground trampolines are safer than above ground trampolines. However, this largely depends on the quality of above ground trampoline you buy.
If you want to see how else in ground trampolines differ from above ground trampolines, besides safety, check out our article, “Inground Trampolines vs. Above Ground Trampolines (Key Differences)”.
Is an In Ground Trampoline Right for You?
In ground trampolines certainly have their advantages when it comes to safety: They eliminate falling injuries, provide easy access to the trampoline and aren’t as affected by windy weather conditions.
However, the cost of an in ground trampoline can run over $5,000, because, much like a pool, it requires professional installation.
Beyond buying the trampoline kit itself (over $1,000), you will likely have to pay somebody to dig the hole properly, fill it in, build the retaining wall and possibly account for a water drainage system.
In ground trampoline installation, courtesy of Trampoline Holes:
Because of the complex (and pricey) installation of in ground trampolines, and the fact that they are a permanent backyard structure once installed, they are far less common than above ground trampolines.
Since they are permanently installed into your backyard, you would also have to pay for somebody to move it to a new location if desired or to disassemble the trampoline altogether.
Looking for the Safest Trampoline for Your Family?
If you don’t want to go through an elongated in ground trampoline installation process, but still want a safe trampoline for your family, our Springfree Trampolines may be worth looking into.
For all the factors discussed in the previous section, Springfree Trampolines are the safest trampoline you can buy and have won various awards for their safety features, including the Mom’s Choice Award and the PTTA Top Product Award for this year.
Springfree Trampolines are also on the pricey side ($999-$4,499), but if you’re looking for the safest trampoline that will hold up for 10+ years with little maintenance required, a Springfree Trampoline might be for you.
Check out the two articles below to find out more information about Springfree Trampolines and whether one of them may be right for you: