Starfish Therapies

September 27, 2012

Should We Wrap Kids in Bubble Wrap?

Filed under: Developmental Milestones — Starfish Therapies @ 12:00 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

I know the trampolines they are talking about in the article are the outdoor ones but I don’t have a picture of one of those!

I recently read an article on Huffington Post about a new statement from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) stating that kids should not jump on trampoline’s because its not safe.  Now I am sure they have looked at the numbers and seen how many injuries have occurred (its actually down in 2009 from 2004 according to the article) but have they looked at the other factors?  How many of those injuries were on a trampoline that was being used correctly?  How many had multiple kids on the trampoline, maybe even big and little kids together?  How many had the proper safety equipment that was recommended?  All of those factors can influence the information.

I’m not saying that there is no risk for injury if kids are being supervised and the equipment is being used properly but the risk most likely decreases.  (I hate to say it but as a child I hurt myself plenty of times when playing while my feet were planted on the ground)  When used properly trampolines can provide kids with cardiovascular exercise, strengthening for their muscles, sensory input, and the ability to explore movement.  With all the complaints of obesity in our youth and their overall sedentary lifestyle why take away something that when used properly can be fun and a great way for exercise?

I have talked about this before but I thought this article brought up an opportunity to reiterate the need for kids to have a chance to get sensory exploration and movement in their environment while engaging in active play.  How many school playgrounds have swings these days?  Or when was the last time you saw a merry-go-round on a playground.

Safety is extremely important but it is also important to let kids play and explore.  With proper supervision and use many ‘dangerous’ activities can actually have much lower risk.  (I made a similar point about the Bumbo chair recall)

What are your thoughts on this topic?



  1. This is very topical for me, as in the last hour and a half or so. Background info is that my 8 year-old son has some attention issues. We’re in the process of trying to tease out if they are sensory or ADD (he does not have the hyperactivity component). Taking him to do something, like grocery shopping is often frustrating for me, as he is ALWAYS in the way, distracted by the busy environment around him. He cannot visually discriminate to pick out food. I end up getting very impatient with him. Today, we stopped at a friend’s house on the way home from school. They had a large outdoor trampoline and my son went on it. He got pretty wound up, and was a little out of control after, especially when more kids were over. We had to stop at the market on the way home to get stuff for dinner. I was dreading it, based on how wound up the kids were. My son then proceeded to navigate pushing the cart, only running into me twice (as opposed to once or twice in every aisle). He was still slow (but will never be a quick kid), but was much more focused and attentive. I cannot help but think that the sensory input from the trampoline was beneficial to improving his function.

    I have been adamantly opposed to a large yard trampoline for all the reasons previously listed. Given the improvement in my son’s function, however, I would have to consider it. I still need to think about it. There are certainly benefits for the sensory and cardiovascular inputs, especially considering that they are forced to sit and learn at a pace that is developmentally inappropriate with only a 20 minute recess each day. If it helps my son get through his day and helps him be more functional, I think the benefits may outweigh the risks.

    Comment by Kathryn Biel — September 27, 2012 @ 8:58 pm | Reply

    • You could also start with a smaller trampoline in the house that he could try jumping on and see if you notice any carryover.

      Comment by Starfish Therapies — September 27, 2012 @ 9:33 pm | Reply

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