There are many different shapes, sizes and makes of trampolines available and, as trampoline pioneers in the UK, we can offer some useful advice towards selecting the best trampoline for your needs.
There are three main shapes of trampoline: round, oval and rectangular. Each of these shapes will provide excellent trampolining and years of enjoyment. However, apart from the aesthetic look, each trampoline shape has some subtle differences you should be aware of.
On a round trampoline, the best bounce is in the middle, with an even pull on all the springs. For a single user the bounce is as good as you get on any shape of trampoline. If you're going to allow more than one child on the trampoline at the same time, bear in mind that especially if the users are of different weights they can be pulled towards the middle of the trampoline.
An oval trampoline offers two different jump areas, one at either end of the trampoline. If you are going to allow two users, an oval trampoline is a good idea. The shape of an oval also means that it slots in to the corner of the average British garden with less wasted space around it than with a round trampoline.
A rectangular trampoline is more suitable for those wanting to practice or perform gymnastics as well as being more suitable for trampoline games such as basketball where it helps to be able to bounce more evenly across the jumpmat. This is because unlike a round trampoline that allows each spring to react to a jump all at one time and therefore provides a "controlled" bounce (pushes the jumper into the middle of the trampoline where it is softest), a rectangular trampoline gives a bounce that is not controlled but instead gives an "even" bounce from one end to the other as the springs work independently of each other. In other words the trampoline guarantees the optimum bounce regardless of what area of the trampoline they are on and this is why rectangular trampolines are the only shape you will find at competition level.
The larger a trampoline is, the safer it is and the more fun it is, so always buy as large a trampoline as your garden and budget will allow. As a rough guide:
12ft and 14ft
11.5ft x 8ft
13ft x 9ft
15ft x 10ft
11ft x 8ft
14ft x 10ft
12 years plus
Above ground or in-ground?
As well as offering our broad range of traditional above ground trampolines, we now offer a range of in-ground trampolines, including our own Capital In-ground range (pictured below)
There are distinct pros and cons to both above and in-ground options:
An in-ground trampoline is generally considered safer than an above-ground trampoline as there is no raised platform for children to fall off and no ladder to climb. Parents are more at ease letting younger children play on an in-ground trampoline which also requires less supervision.
Trampolines have never been deemed to be attractive to look at, many parents hate the thought of their garden being dominated by a trampoline. An in-ground trampoline looks far more visually appealing, especially as they do not require a safety enclosure (although they can be added for extra peace of mind).
An in-ground trampoline with associated ground works can end up being two or three times the price of an above ground trampoline.
A normal above ground trampoline can be shifted around the garden and can be taken down and put up as often as you like. Once you have installed an in-ground trampoline it is quite a task to then move its location.
One of the big pluses of an in-ground trampoline is that of enjoyment and ease of use. Not needing a ladder to access it and not having a gap in the net to crawl through, children can hop on and off their trampoline at will, increasing the number of times that they will use the trampoline
If you have younger children who will want a trampoline for the next ten years and you are not likely to move house in the near future, an in-ground trampoline is well worth considering as it will not look unsightly in your garden and your children will use it more often. Although cost is clearly a factor, the in-ground trampolines that we offer have been designed with cost-saving in mind so the price disparity is not as great as it was a few years ago, especially if you carry out the ground-works yourself.
Capital Play. The Capital In-ground trampoline kit is a unique design of in-ground trampoline, saving you money on the initial purchase cost and making the installation process far quicker.
- Built-in retaining wall included in the price.
- Patented armourweave jump mat for an optimum bounce.
- Patented vented frame pads allow trapped air to escape – a better bounce and no ‘pad-slap’ noise.
- DIY assembly or Capital Play can do install for you.
Capital Play. The Capital Airbound is a great, high specification above ground trampoline, designed to high standards but at an affordable price. This range of trampolines is right for you if:
- You're looking for a great value trampoline with long warranties
- You want to buy from a manufacturer with decades of trampolining experience.
Jumpking. Jumpking Trampolines have been made for over 50 years now and they are a huge global brand, making 60% of the world’s trampolines.
- Unique patented Pod design.
- An incredibly strong frame.
- Vast choice.
- Mid-priced Classic range and top-end Deluxe and Capital Ultra ranges.
- Helpful UK office, excellent after sales services and no call centres!
- Masters of innovation – first to make an oval trampoine.
Springfree. As the name suggests, a unique trampoline without metal springs, using fiberglass rods in their place.
- Overall quality – undoubtedly one of the best made trampolines we have ever come across.
- No external springs means more bounce area for the space.
- Beautifully soft bounce.
- More expensive, but many think worth the money!
Are trampolines safe?
When trampolines first became popular about 10 years ago the British media published a great deal of information regarding the number of accidents that occurred on trampolines. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA ) published figures for 2002 that 11,000 people had been injured by trampolines.
However, please bear in mind that since these early days a number of factors have greatly lessened the number of accidents:
- The use of safety enclosures – in 2003 for every 10 trampolines that we sold, we only sold 2 surrounds ie only 20% of trampolines had enclosures. From 2011 every trampoline that we sold was sold with an enclosure.
- Build quality – in the early days there were quite a few outfits selling fairly cheap and low-quality trampolines that offered little protection to the user.
- Awareness – as parents have come to learn of the potential for accidents, they have become more safety conscious.
- New Safety Standards - in 2015 a new trampoline safety standard appeared EN71 Part 14, ensuring trampolines are safer than ever.
Location, ground preparation and assembly
Think about where you are going to place the trampoline in your garden.
- Use a large enough area free of potential hazards, such as fences, hedges or trees.
- Ideally put the trampoline on grass or bark or other materials that produce a cushioning effect.
- If you do put the trampoline on concrete or another hard surface put crash mats by the entrance way.
- A 'safe fall zone' of at least 2 metres should be around the outside of the trampoline, so keep this area clear.
Trampolines have a rigid steel frame so need to be on relatively flat and even ground. The ground does not need to be 100% flat or even – liken it to putting a patio table up ie once you wiggle it about you normally find a suitable spot.
Ideally your trampoline will be on a soft surface such as grass or bark. If you are going to site it on a patio or decking, ensure that you have safety mats around it, especially by the entrance way.
Putting up a trampoline does take a couple of hours and depending on the make and model can be a physically demanding task. That said, trampolines are designed for self-assembly and most households are quite capable of putting up their own trampoline. It's certainly easier with two people. Very few tools are needed and all manufacturers that we work with provide a spring-pulling tool to assist with attaching the springs and good instructions.
For those customers that do not fancy taking on the challenge of trampoline assembly, Capital Play offers an assembly service throughout London and the South East.
Using your trampoline
- Regularly check that there are no holes in the jump mat and that the frame is safely locked together.
- Ensure your children know the risks of not using the trampoline properly.
- Set some simple rules so everyone knows what they should and shouldn't be doing – always bounce in the middle, never jump off, stand back when someone else is using it and never go under the trampoline when it's in use.
- Remove all jewellery or clothing that could catch.
- Don't allow more than one person on at once on the trampoline.
- Always supervise your children using a trampoline.
- Don't allow somersaults – they may seem fun, but if you want to do that, it's best to go to an organised club.
- Don't allow bouncing as a way of exiting trampoline.
- Only let children aged under six use trampolines designed for their age.
Maintenance and replacement parts
Good quality trampolines can happily be left uncovered all year. A cover will help to keep your trampoline clean and dry but is not needed in order to protect the trampoline.
However, the frame pads and jump mat can get a little grubby and the best way to clean them is with hot water and a very mild detergent. Avoid using high pressure washers or bleach based cleaners and ensure that any detergent is washed off.
Different parts of your trampoline will weather sooner than others and some parts will be more prone to general wear and tear than others.
Good quality jump mats are made of polypropylene which is almost indestructible, so your jump mat should easily last 10 years. If it has had a lot of heavy usage it may start to sag a bit after 5 years as the material can start to stretch.
Frame pads can deteriorate depending on the quality of the materials used. A good quality frame-pad, made of heavy duty PVC will last far longer than a cheaper set made of PE. Expect an average set of pads to last about 4 years before they start to wear out.
All the trampolines that we sell use premium grade steel that is fully galvanized inside and out. As a result, though a small amount of surface rust may appear, there should be no rust in the steel itself. As a result you can expect your frame and springs to last at least 10-15 years.
Enclosure netting is one part of your trampoline that you need to keep an eye on. If your children are particularly boisterous they can rip the netting. Even good quality nets made of polypropylene may tear. That said a good net should last 3-5 years.
We're here to help...
Please do call us on 01276 855600 or email email@example.com for any advice or help. We've been selling trampolines of all shapes and sizes since 2002 so like to think that we know what we are talking about.
Please also remember that we have many trampolines on display at our Surrey Display Site. You are welcome to try them out and we are on-hand to help advise as to which trampoline to buy. At any time we have over 150 trampolines in stock so you can either take your trampoline home with you or we can arrange same or next day delivery.
Join the funBe the first to hear about our latest offers and new products