If you have tried a trampoline at least once, you know the thrill and excitement that comes from being suspended in air just after a major bounce. Perhaps that experience just might be something you want to bring to your own home for your family. But with several kinds of trampolines in the market one might wonder, where to get started on buying a trampoline for the kids?
A Variety of Trampolines To Choose From
Before you even get started with selecting the added features or accessories that come with the trampoline, you have to consider first who will be using the trampoline. If we are to divide the trampolines based on user age group you will have two kinds:
- Starter Trampoline for Kids
Starter trampolines are designed for children ages three to ten years old. Because they were designed with safety as paramount, you can expect that this will not be as bouncy as the larger trampolines that are more advanced.
- Family Trampoline suitable for Adults
These are much larger trampolines than the starter ones and you need your child to be at least six years old to be able to use it. Although some of these trampolines might have extra safety features, the overall safety still varies from product to product.
The starter trampolines are quite easy to choose from and would cost you around seventy to two hundred dollars depending on the size and extra features. Because of their size they can easily be placed indoors.
But for most kids who want the thrill and excitement of the ultimate bounce experience, you still have plenty of options to choose from based on the specifications that will fit your home’s outdoor space. Run through the following factors to help you decide which trampoline works best for your family:
1. Space and Ground
It’s easy to consider looking at your backyard and decide from there, but before you even consider sizing up your place for a trampoline, you might want to check the ground. Uneven ground can pose a hazard to your kids jumping on the trampoline because of the lack of a firm base to which the trampoline can stand on. If you are using a spring-free trampoline, this might even result in a deformation of the trampoline because of the uneven distribution of force. Is the ground soft? Are there uneven surfaces that make the trampoline stand unevenly?
With the trampoline’s base considered, you also want to make sure that you are not just allocating space for the trampoline but also considering the neighbouring structures around that space. You need at least six feet clearance for the surrounding areas and twenty-four feet in vertical clearance. This is why it is okay to have a trampoline indoors but with the space clearance factored in. With all those things in mind you can then decide the diameter of the trampoline you want to choose from. Mat diameters can range from ten feet up to sixteen feet being the larger trampolines.
2. Assembly and Parts
Check videos online on how trampolines are assembled so there is a comparison between the two major kinds of trampolines right now: Spring-free and traditional spring trampoline. The more common trampoline is the traditional spring trampoline and it is relatively easy to assemble however the spring-free trampoline has also been designed to be relatively easy despite the more number of points of attachment compared to the traditional trampoline.
Based on several reviews online, it is easier to get parts and accessories for the traditional spring trampoline because the design is generally the same across different brands and manufacturers. This makes for easier purchase of replacement parts.
Spring-free trampolines have more complex and detailed parts that need to be ordered from the original manufacturer so you will need to have a supplier that is easy to reach. The overall design of the spring-free trampoline feels consolidated rather than modular.
3. Safety Features
By technical definition a trampoline simply is the frame and the surface which provides the bouncing experience. However, to avoid accidents from this rather adventurous activity, safety measures are in place over the springs, the frame and the surroundings.
Your trampoline must have the following:
- Net – sturdy enough to keep the person inside the trampoline from falling off
- Safety paddings – this surrounds the springs near the edges and also covers the frame’s sharp points. Make sure the padding effectively covers these hazardous parts. Also check if the padding is thick enough to absorb impact. Cheaper products might compromise on this aspect.
Now there is a large range of pricing for trampolines out there because of the variety. To give you a quick view it can start around four hundred to eight hundred dollars for the basic fourteen feet diameter trampoline. Then you have larger trampolines reaching to a thousand dollars.
The prices above are for the traditional spring trampolines. With the spring-free trampoline boasting a superior safety design, they can range anywhere from a thousand eight hundred dollars to two thousand five hundred dollars for the jumbo sized trampolines.
5. Warranty and Service
Because you are dealing with safety and precaution, the quality of material can be backed with a company’s promise on warranty. If you are buying from a supplier that refuses to provide warranty and the price itself already looks too good to be true, it usually is.
However, it is not always true that the highest price provides the best warranty. Read the fine print on the warranty. In some reviews in Amazon, users have revealed that they only found out much later that the ten-year warranty offered by the company only covered the trampoline frame and even shorter warranty for the safety netting. Though it is only fair that there can be varied warranty limits on the product parts, it helps to be familiar ahead of the policy so that you will not have any disappointments along the way. It helps to set the expectations.
How long a warranty should a trampoline brand have? Safest minimum would be at least five years.
Choosing Between Spring-Free or Traditional Trampolines
There are several mentions above about two different kinds of trampoline which is the spring-free trampoline and the traditional spring trampoline. When you do your own search in YouTube these are the two most popular categories being compared to each other.
All the promotional videos will tend to lean on the Spring-free trampoline. In paper, spring-free trampolines are indeed far safer than the traditional ones simply because they have worked out the aspects of the trampoline which posed as hazards to children or any user.
Spring-free trampolines have no sharp frame edges that you can hit your head on. Because of this they do not require the protective padding found on traditional trampolines. With no springs stretching the mat, you have no holes which an arm or a leg can get stuck in.
This is not to say that all traditional trampolines fall short on safety and quality. Some brands really focus on getting those dangerous parts covered and padded. Spring-free trampolines are not entirely free of fault either. Because of their consolidated design, repair and parts replacement come off as a challenge. You will find some feedback from Amazon buyers about this concern.
The Choice Is Yours
In conclusion, if you have the budget for it spring-free trampoline does have a great track record on safety. They have significantly lesser accidents compared to traditional trampolines.
However, if you feel that the price is just too much for the spring-free trampoline considering that they do go two to three times more expensive than the new spring-free ones, perhaps a spring trampoline will fit you. After all, there have been hundreds and thousands of households with spring trampolines that have at least five years of use and no record of accidents.
Our team has considered all the factors outlined in this buying guide, along with their expertise and knowledge in Trampolines, to recommend the top choice for you. You can shop being confident that someone has considered all relevant information and you will get the best Trampolines to meet your needs. Happy shopping!