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Trampolines are notoriously fun for the young and young at heart. Trampolines have been a backyard staple for families for exercise and leisure for decades. However, losing control of your jump and hitting the metal frame, or falling on the ground can cause serious injuries and accidents. So to reduce the risks associated with trampolines, manufacturers crafted safety nets. With various types of nets available on the market, it’s hard to know which one is the best option for you and how to put a net on a trampoline. We have gathered all the essentials you need to know to increase the safety of your backyard.
Are There Different Types of Nets for Trampolines?
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Trampoline safety nets come in many shapes and sizesin order to accommodate the diverse range of trampolines on the market. Most trampolines today come with a safety enclosure and net. However, if you’re replacing an existing net, or in the market for a brand new one, there are 3 key factors to keep in mind before making your purchase: trampoline size, style, and the number of poles.
Trampoline Frame Size
Knowing your trampoline frame size is paramount when choosing the right safety net, whether it’s round, square, or rectangular. Measure from one side of the frame’s outer edge to the opposite outer edge. Even if your trampoline is round, take two measurements–one length ways and one width ways, to be confident in the approximate size of your trampoline’s frame.
Safety Enclosure Poles Style
Identify your trampoline’s type of safety enclosure pole so you can find the right net. There are four pole styles:
- 1Straight Pole – For trampolines with safety net enclosure poles that are straight. These have blue caps at their top where the net connects with bolts.
- 2Straight-Curved Poles – For trampolines with straight safety net enclosure poles which have a slight inward curve at the top. Similar to a straight pole, this pole also has blue caps on the top where the net connects with bolts.
- 3Arched Poles – For trampolines with safety net enclosure poles that have a distinctive upside down “u” shape at their top where they connect to the net. The net may attach to the poles using either buckled straps, or a sleeve the pole would fit through.
- 4Top Ring Poles – For trampolines with straight safety net enclosure poles that have a large ring at the top to support the net. Usually made of fiberglass or steel, the ring has the same diameter as the frame of the trampoline.
Count the Number of Poles or Arches
The number of poles or arches on your trampoline will dictate the size and design of your net. A full arch is 1 pole, or 1 arch, and top rings are considered separate from vertical poles. For instance, a top ring trampoline enclosure may have 6 poles plus a top ring, or an arch enclosure may have 3 arches, or 3 upside down “u” shapes.
Once you have identified these key factors, you are ready to purchase the perfect safety net. When browsing the different nets, be sure to look out for 5 key details:
- 1Weight – Finding a heavyweight safety net means its material will be higher in quality and provide greater longevity and safety.
- 2Door – One of the most vulnerable areas of any trampoline safety net is the door. Make sure that the design uses heavy-duty zippers to provide maximum safety and prevent any injuries from falling out or off the enclosure.
- 3Weave – Tears and holes are common faults in safety nets, so we recommend choosing one with heavy-duty weaving. A strong weaving decreases tear chance and provides extra durability and protection.
- 4UV Protection – UV protection not only provides extra safety to any users but also increases the nets longevity, protecting it from sun damage.
- 5Anti-Bacterial Protection – Some safety nets will detail on their packaging anti-bacterial or anti-microbial protection. This is essential in maintaining general hygiene and preventing infection related injuries.
Is There a Need for a Net on a Trampoline?
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On average, accidents associated with trampolines reach close to 100,000 every year in America, with many of those injuries resulting in broken bones. While trampolines provide a unique form of backyard entertainment for the whole family, accidents and injuries can occur as a result of users losing control, hitting metal components, and jumping or falling off the trampoline.
A trampoline safety net reduces the risk of any injury being caused by rebounding or falling off. The soft synthetic material catches the user, enabling them to regain their balance whilst softly sliding back down to the trampoline mat, further preventing any bruises from harsh landings. A safety net also prevents the user from colliding with any rigid components of the trampoline, such as the metal springs, eliminating the risk of skin getting harmfully pinched, lacerations, and fractured or broken bones.
Regardless of the trampoline activity, a safety net will increase the protection and safety for all users, eliminating severe accidents and injuries from your backyard recreational activities. Therefore, it is imperative you know how to put a net on a trampoline.
A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Put a Net on a Trampoline
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Whether you have purchased a new trampoline which comes complete with its own safety net, you are hunting for a replacement net, or you have an older trampoline and bought a net for the first time, the following steps will guide you through how to put a net on a trampoline and make installation a breeze.
1. Make Sure You Have Space
Trampolines can vary in size, so the height and width of the net enclosure will increase the existing space your trampoline takes up. Inspect your backyard for any low-hanging trees, dangerous fences, pools, etc and position the trampoline appropriately.
2. Lay Out Your Tools
It is important to give yourself space to work and a secure place to store your tools, the net, the poles, and nuts and bolts, so that nothing gets lost. It is important to know that you cannot proceed without all the listed parts. If something is missing, do not substitute a part with something you have at home, because it will only weaken the trampoline’s overall safety. Directly reach out to the place where you purchased the trampoline and net package, or the manufacturer, to source the missing part.
3. The Checklist
Once you have a secure place for your tools, materials, etc, lay out each of the items and cross check them against this checklist:
- Trampoline (already erected)
- Netting for enclosure (normally rectangular)
- Bungee chord
- Poles for enclosure (usually six 4′ poles)
- Protective padding / foam for poles
4. Your Safety
To optimize safety and ensure quick, easy installation, we recommend you undertake the task with a friend or family member, and use:
- Protective gloves
- Power drill (if you would prefer to use this, instead of a manual screw driver)
- Rubber mallet (less driving force that a normal hammer, so it won’t deform or weaken the metal parts of the trampoline and safety net poles)
5. Assembling the Poles
The frame for the safety net features six aluminum or steel4′ poles (also referred to as ‘tubes’). Each pole contains two pieces, a smaller and larger tube which slot together and connect to customized holes on the feet of your trampoline. The poles will have notched ends on one side to help you identify correct placement.
6. Securing the Poles
Position these poles in place and secure with screws, before covering each pole with the protective padding or foam provided. If the foam doesn’t slide over the poles easily, sprinkle a few drops of water on the foam for lubrication. Protective padding or foam will increase the durability and security of the net, whilst providing an additional layer of comfort for users.
7. How to Put a Net on a Trampoline
The most pivotal part of how to put a net on a trampoline. Unfold your safety net and tie the bottom edges to the base of the newly erected poles. Spread the net around the outside of the trampoline and pull the netting’s sleeves over the poles to keep it upright.
8. The Bungee Cord
To avoid the risk of small children accidentally rolling off the trampoline and going underneath the netting, use the provided bungee cord to connect the net to the bottom of the frame. After you tie off the cord, start weaving it over the bottom of the netting and around the frame.
It is worth noting, that some manufacturers may provide netting already fixed to the mat, instead of the bungee cord.
9. Tie off the Top
Using the provided fittings or string, tie the top of the net to the tops of the upright poles. They recommend tying three knots, so that each knot has loops which can be tied into a square knot (a reef knot) for security. Square knots do not become loose even with extended periods of strenuous activity on the trampoline.
It’s always a good idea to anchor your trampoline net to the ground to prevent any movement from strong winds. You can use sandbags or secure the excess netting to the frame with zip ties.
10. Test Your Trampoline
Feeling confident that you now know how to put a net on a trampoline? That’s great! Just one last important step – check everything. After assembling your poles and tying off your safety net, do not forget to:
- 1Wobble the frame.
- 2Run a screwdriver over each screw one last time.
- 3Using your hand, try to move the protective padding. It needs to feel fixed tightly in place.
- 4Test the zip on the net to ensure its working properly.
- 5Carefully climb onto the trampoline and bounce several times to check it is stable.
Please be aware that if the trampoline appears unstable, do not jump on it until you can fix the problem.
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Trampolines are hours of fun for the whole family, but can cause injuries and some severe cases, death. An extra layer of security on your family’s play equipment, will ensure their safety and restore your peace of mind, without restricting their fun. Whilst a safety net can never replace your supervision, it is a crucial accessory for any trampoline.
By following these 10 steps about how to put a net on a trampoline, you will increase the stability of the equipment and provide a flexible, but sturdy, fencing around the edges to reduce potential accidents and injury. With many affordable nets available and helpful video tutorials online, there is no reason you can’t revamp the safety of your backyard today!