Another Hidden Danger in Your Backyard

To a skittish parent with a track record of peril in the home, like me, anything and everything is potentially dangerous to your offspring. You have to be vigilant day one. You childproof your home when the kids are tots, checking to be sure there are no toxic products under any sink. Cupboards have special closures that cannot be tampered with and scary devices like mixers that attach tiny fingers vacuum cleaners (that bite little toes). Of course, the stove and toaster are off limits as they like to show their power and burn intruders. The fridge seems to be the one safe place.

When I had my babies, I scrutinized every nook and cranny of the house and garage and kept watch over diminutive walkers who can wander in the blink of an eye. I asked for suggestions on Facebook, and with that, outlets were covered, small objects that can be eaten were hidden, and breakables were quickly stowed in the attic. When the kids were a bit older, we agreed to have a backyard pool, but after my son almost drowned, I regretted the decision to the bottom of my heart. Even having the mandatory fence did not help. There are ways that kids can get access to forbidden places. Kids can also go under water when you are right there as surrogate lifeguard. It happens that fast.

One thing most parents forget about in the yard are garden tools that children can step on such as a rake. There are a myriad of evils, especially that trampoline you bought for exercise that threatens from one corner. Most people don’t surround them with an ugly fence of the chain link variety. Imagine having both your pool and trampoline look like they are in prison. However, a trampoline is not always perfectly safe for anyone, child or adult, if they don’t know the rules. Anyone acquiring a new device needs to have a family meeting to go over safety measures. They will understand that it is for their own good. Start with the following ideas from Trampoline Choice:

  • Never jump alone if you do not have prior experience. You must learn about proper techniques for basic “tricks” before executing something difficult such as a somersault or flip.
  • Children and adults can fall off a trampoline and hit their heads on something nearby. Placing the unit in a safe open space is a must.
  • Anyone trying fancy stuff needs a spotter at first until the advanced moves are mastered.
  • Don’t do any double jumping with a rambunctious child that likes to shove and push.
  • Cover any hard surfaces such as the trampoline rim, especially any metal.
  • Check that your trampoline is in good working order and that all attachments are secure. You don’t want it to suddenly break in the middle of a practice session.
  • For kids’ parties, trampolines are magic, but you need the guests to take turns to avoid fighting.