Can You Use a Trampoline in the Winter?
During the winter, it can be tempting to abandon the idea of outside play and cozy up inside with movies, video games and other sedentary activities. And, while we always love a good excuse to watch movies, the truth is that moderate outdoor activity, even when it's cold, can have a lot of benefits for kids and adults alike.
Outdoor play gets your family outside and away from the viruses and bacteria that tend to get built up inside during the winter. That means less exposure to those nasty germs that are so prevalent when it's cold. It also increases exposure to valuable nutrients, like vitamin D, that come from exposure to sunshine. The short-and long-term health benefits of vitamin D are vast, but also spending time outdoors can help your family stay healthier than if you are just holed up inside.
The trick to wintertime outdoor play is to dress appropriately, know your limits and find safe activities for your children to take part in.
This is where your backyard trampoline can come in handy. If you opt to keep it outside during the winter, your trampoline can be a great tool for encouraging your family to get outside and enjoy some of that cool, fresh air.
Can You Jump on Your Trampoline in the Winter?
Using trampolines in the winter are a terrific source of exercise and fun, but any use of a trampoline during cold weather needs to be done safely.
If you live in a location that tends to get large amounts of snow or experience high winds during the winter months, it may not be a good idea to leave your trampoline outside. The weight of snow can ruin a trampoline, and high winds can blow it around your yard. If you live in an area prone to nasty weather, disassembling your trampoline and storing it indoors during the winter is probably a good idea.
However, if you live in a more moderate winter climate, it may not be necessary to store your trampoline when the mercury heads south on the thermometer. The cold alone does not typically damage a trampoline. Its biggest challenges are exposure to moisture — including rain and snow — and exposure to high winds that can blow it around.
Trampoline Winter Care
If you're willing to spend a little bit of time preparing your trampoline ahead of the snow and wind, you'll be able to keep it in place and use it on the days when bad weather doesn't keep you inside. If you live in a more moderate-to-mild winter climate, there are just a few steps you should take to protect it from any winter weather you may encounter:
1. Remove the Frame Pads and Store Them Inside When Not in Use
Removing the frame pads will prevent them from getting damaged from the moisture of rain or snow. These are easy to fold and store inside without taking up a lot of space. If you opt not to remove the frame pads, make sure they are covered with a weather cover to prevent them from coming into contact with moisture.
2. Clear Snow From the Jumping Pad as Soon as It Is Safe to Do So
If you allow snow to build up on the pad, its weight can cause damage to your trampoline. A broom should be enough to remove all of the snow. Avoid using a shovel or snowblower. A shovel can scratch or tear the surface of the pad, and a snowblower can damage it if your blower emits heat.
3. Consider Using a Weather Cover When Your Trampoline Isn't in Use
A weather cover can protect the jump pad, as well as the frame pads if you opt to leave them on as well. However, be careful if you choose to cover your trampoline. A cover can trap moisture on the surface of the trampoline, which can allow mildew to grow. If you opt to use a cover, make sure to remove it regularly to let your trampoline dry out. If snow accumulates on top of the cover, clear it off of the cover with a broom, just as you would if the jumping bed itself were exposed.
4. Use Trampoline Anchors to Keep It Safely in Place
As their name suggests, trampoline anchors anchor the trampoline to the ground to keep it from being blown around your yard when the winds kick up. Anchors are an especially good idea if you live in an area prone to high winds.
It's worth noting that trampoline anchors are a good investment any time of year if you live in an area where high winds are common. In fact, since the anchors go into the ground, this is something you'll want to do before cold weather comes so that the ground will be soft enough to embed the anchors into the ground.
5. Periodically Inspect the Frame, Springs and Jumping Pad
Inspecting your trampoline is important to make sure the winter weather isn't doing unexpected damage to it.
If the damage is detected early, it will be easier to repair or prevent further, irreparable damage from occurring. Before your family starts to play, take a few minutes to walk around the trampoline, noting any areas that look like they've experienced wear and tear since the last time the trampoline was used. Address any safety concerns before allowing your family to begin jumping.
Benefits of Using Your Trampoline in the Winter
It might seem easier to stay inside when the temperatures drop, but outdoor exercise in moderation has a number of benefits for children and adults alike. So before you put your trampoline away for the season, consider the benefits of leaving it in place:
1. Change of Scenery
Staying inside all winter can leave you feeling blue. Stepping outside for a few minutes each day can improve your mood and help make winter a little bit more bearable. Not only does fresh air help you feel better, but more exposure to sunlight and the vitamin D it provides is important to your mood and overall feelings of well-being, particularly in the winter. This is true for both kids and adults.
2. Good Source of Exercise
Just because it's wintertime doesn't mean your body doesn't need to move. Regardless of the temperatures, kids still need a chance to run, jump and move after a day of sitting at their desk at school. If they are dressed appropriately and you limit the amount of time they spend outdoors, there is no reason they can't enjoy playtime outside in the winter.
For kids, a change of scenery and some fresh air can also improve their behavior and help them to get out pent up energy that might otherwise have them jumping on your couch cushions or kicking soccer balls down your hallway. This equals physical benefits for kids and — our favorite — mental health benefits for parents!
3. A New Perspective
Things look and feel different in the winter. When your child steps outside, their imagination will be challenged with new ideas and games. They will see the world in a new way and find new things to occupy their time. This is a benefit that comes from any outdoor play, but there's nothing like the view that comes from up in the air as you jump on a trampoline. Plus, we are all for anything that helps combat boredom!
Winter Trampoline Jumping Safety Tips
There's nothing wrong with wintertime fun. The health benefits of spending time outside on the trampoline are many. But, just like any outdoor activity, it's essential to follow the rules when it comes to playing safe and smart:
1. Check the Thermometer
While it's perfectly safe to play outside in cooler temperatures, children are not as good at regulating their body temperatures as adults. In other words, they don't always know when they've had enough. Younger children will not be able to stay warm as long as older children. And, regardless of age, children should wear appropriate clothing to protect them from the lower temperatures. So, make sure you know how cold it is outside. A good rule of thumb is to know what the wind chill is in your area that day — remembering that the wind chill can make it feel significantly colder than it is.
You're probably wondering "how cold is too cold?" Unfortunately, it can be hard to pin a number limit on how cold is "too cold." For children in California, for example, 50 degrees might be too chilly because they don't have the appropriate clothing. For children in Michigan, wind chills in the 30s might be bearable in small amounts because they have heavier clothing to protect them. All we can say is to use your best judgment and trust your parenting instincts.
2. Check the Weather
Besides the outside temperature, make sure it's not raining or snowing while your children are on the trampoline. Moisture can quickly turn the trampoline from fun to dangerous. There's nothing worse than slipping on a patch of snow or ice and sustaining an injury as a result. Not only should you check for current conditions, but inspect the surface of the trampoline to make sure there isn't any snow or ice lingering from a previous storm. Ice especially can be hard to detect because it can blend in with the surface of the jump pad.
3. Remove Snow or Moisture From the Surface of the Trampoline
Before allowing children to play on the trampoline, inspect it closely for any snow, ice or water that may have built up on the surface from a recent storm. Clean off any suspected moisture to prevent slips or falls. While you're at it, inspect the frame, pads and springs for any damage that might have occurred since the last time it was used. And, as we mentioned before, if it's still raining or snowing, steer clear of the trampoline.
4. Avoid Wearing Loose Clothing
If it's chilly out, it can be tempting to put your child in a scarf or sweatshirt with a hood, but these items can be a safety hazard when jumping on a trampoline. Opt for tighter fitting clothing items, such as a turtleneck to keep their necks warm or a hat that isn't attached to their clothing. Also, never jump in boots — the rough soles can damage the jumping surface. There's no quicker way to ruin trampoline fun than to destroy the jumping surface of the trampoline.
5. Provide Proper Supervision
Yes, we know it can be hard to stand outside and watch your children play when it's cold, but the wintertime is no time to slack on providing proper adult supervision. If you're getting cold watching your children jump on the trampoline, join in the fun or throw some toe warmers in your boots. But never leave children unsupervised while a trampoline is in use.
6. Know When to Quit
Outdoor play is a good thing during the winter months, but it should be limited more strictly than you might in warmer temperatures. Watch your children closely for signs that they are getting cold. Make sure that you restrict playtime to a safe amount of time and then usher children indoors quickly. Even just a few minutes of outdoor play each day can be enough to help you combat the winter blues.
7. Follow Standard Trampoline Rules
No matter what time of year you're jumping, always make sure to follow standard trampoline safety. Only allow one person to jump at a time, always have an adult close by, and never jump on a trampoline that is broken or damaged in any way. Also, avoid doing flips and other "tricks" that could cause serious injury.
Get Out and Have Fun!
Every parent is on the hunt for ways to keep their kids happy and active during the cold winter months. A backyard trampoline can be a great way to do this. It gets kids outside, moving around and having fun — a triple win for parents everywhere. Yes, it takes a little bit of work to maintain a trampoline in the cold, but we think it's worth the extra effort to have happier, healthier kids at home.
Still aren't convinced it's worth the investment? Let Superior Play persuade you. With our "Try Before You Buy" philosophy, our showrooms are designed for kids and kids-at-heart to try out our various trampolines and find the one they love before they take it home. Our showrooms are filled with playgrounds and trampolines — each of them like the ones we sell. We encourage families to come in and spend time trying out our different models to figure out what they like the best.
With locations in North Carolina, New Jersey, Georgia and Pennsylvania, we pride ourselves on being experts in play. We are known for our high-quality products, including playsets and trampolines, and our goal is to give your family years of safe, creative outdoor play at a reasonable price. To locate our showrooms or for more information, contact us today.
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