A trampoline can provide endless hours of fun and is also an effective workout benefitting improved balance and coordination. If you have a backyard that is sparsely decorated with grass, first you may be wondering whether adding a trampoline is safe and secondly you may be wondering whether a sloped backyard is going to affect its stability.
Whilst it is possible to add a trampoline to a sloped backyard, you will need to dedicate more time to the installation process. It is also likely that you will need to spend some money on resources that will help to secure the trampoline in place.
Below, we have provided you with the ultimate guide that covers each step involved in installing a trampoline on sloped ground.
Find Out the Steepness of the Slope
First and foremost you will need to find out how steep the slope is. If your backyard is very steeply sloped, installing a trampoline isn’t recommended. However, if the slope is steady then you can proceed.
The method that you adopt to install your trampoline will vary quite considerably depending on whether the slope is small or slightly steeper.
Now you may be wondering how you can determine the steepness of the slope. There is a simple hack that involves the use of a plank of wood and a carpenter’s level.
Begin by placing the trampoline near the area where you would like to install it. Then rest the plank of wood against it until it meets the ground. Lay the carpenter’s level on top of the plank and wait until the bubble reaches the two lines in the center.
Next, you will need to measure the distance from the top of the downward side of the wood and the top of the trampoline. Take this measurement which is going to be given in inches and divide it by the diameter of the trampoline.
If the measurement is less than 7, the area can safely house a trampoline but if it is more, the area is not suitable. Instead, you should consider installing it in a safer, less sloped location.
Begin By Digging a Trench
Once you have your measurements that confirm whether the sloped surface is safe for a trampoline, you can then move onto the next step which involves digging a trench. To do this, you will need to move the trampoline to another area in your yard so that you have plenty of space to work.
The section of the slope where you intend to situate the uphill legs of the trampoline is where you will need to begin digging the trench. You can use the carpenter’s trench again to ensure that the trench is level, however, the depth is going to equate to the severity of the slope that you measured previously.
Return the trampoline to its original position making sure that the uphill legs are secure in the trench that you have just created.
Now you will likely notice that the side legs are sitting higher than the downhill and uphill legs because they aren’t yet secured in place. Avoid using the trampoline at this stage as it isn’t going to be very stable.
To overcome this issue, you will need to dig a trench for each of the side legs. Continue to dig until the side legs and downhill legs are firmly planted in the ground.
Once you have finished this task, you will then need to inspect your work to make sure that it is all level. If the trampoline is still slightly uneven, you will not need to do any more digging, instead, regular jumping will do the work for you by leveling the legs out.
If it is still very uneven, you will need to move the trampoline again and dig the trenches deeper. Keep digging until the trampoline seems more even and no further adjustments are required.
Determine Whether the Ground is Level or Uneven
As we have mentioned, the ground or grass that covers your backyard may not always be level as there may be sections that are quite uneven.
For this reason, you may be wondering what options are available which will make it possible to install a trampoline. Sometimes, digging a trench alone may not be as effective as imagined. As such, the following options offer helpful solutions.
A Trampoline Leveler
The first option is a trampoline leveler. This resource essentially acts as an extension to the legs. As there are multiple levels you can increase or decrease the height of the legs accordingly until the trampoline is stable.
The second option involves the use of leveling blocks. There are several different types of leveling blocks available.
Using leveling blocks is a fairly straightforward process. Simply place them on the section of ground that is prone to sinking the most. Use as many as necessary until the leg of the trampoline is elevated to a height that is equal to the other legs.
You must make sure that your blocks of choice are durable enough to hold the weight of the trampoline without breaking.
Adjust the Length of the Trampoline Legs
Another option is to adjust the length of the trampoline legs by cutting them. Although this isn’t the best solution, if you are encountering serious issues when trying to level out your trampoline, you may choose to try it.
Making cuts in the legs of the trampoline allows you to make accurate adjustments to the height of the trampoline because you can cut them down to the exact height required.
There are some things that you will need to consider before cutting the legs. Are you likely to want to move your trampoline again in the future?
If so, selecting this option is not recommended. You must make sure that the trampoline is placed in the area where you want to install it.
Following this, you will need to determine which legs need to be cut and to what height. Then dig a section of the ground that will accommodate these newly cut legs. Using a saw, start to cut the legs of your trampoline to the desired length.
Dig Some More Trenches
The final option involves digging more trenches. This will require more time and effort on your behalf. Before you start to dig more trenches you will need to determine whether you want the trampoline to sit in the ground or above it.
For an in-ground trampoline, a deep trench that is the size of the whole trampoline is going to be necessary. If you want the trampoline to sit above the ground you will need to measure the legs before deciding what side of the trampoline you need to build a trench. Use a shovel to dig the ground until it is even.
Clear the Area Surrounding the Trampoline
You must make sure that there aren’t any objects or obstacles close to the trampoline as there is a risk of them causing accidents.
For example, placing a trampoline near trees, branches or fencing may inflict injuries onto those who are using it. As such, regardless of whether the ground is even or uneven, you must make sure that it is clear.
Ideally, there should be at least 2.5m of clear space around the perimeter of the trampoline. This will also make sure that you have a clearance area surrounding the trampoline. Should anyone happen to jump off the trampoline, they won’t come into direct contact with any harsh objects.
Ensure that It is Safely Installed
It is paramount to ensure that your trampoline is safely installed as this will reduce the risk of an accident occurring. Purchasing a safety enclosure and a cover for the springs is recommended.
Some trampolines will already come with a safety enclosure but with others, you will need to purchase this resource separately. A safety net helps to ensure that jumpers remain contained within the trampoline and will stop them from falling off it.
You must pay close attention to the area where you intend to place your trampoline. Soft ground is preferred as it will dampen the impact if the jumper falls off the trampoline. If possible try and avoid placing the trampoline on a concrete surface.
If placing the trampoline on a firm surface cannot be avoided, invest in a rubber mat to cover the area surrounding the trampoline.
Jumpers, particularly those of a young age should be supervised when using the trampoline, especially when it’s installed on sloped ground because they are at greater risk of falling off and becoming injured.
Aside from this, you must also make sure that the correct number of people are using the trampoline. Disobeying the recommended capacity increases the risk of injury to the users.
If you have a sloped backyard, you don’t need to rule out the possibility of owning a trampoline, though you will need to take more precautions when it comes to safe installation.
Before you begin, you will need to gather accurate measurements. You can then start to dig trenches for the legs before securing the trampoline in place.
This is a process that is going to require some effort on your part but it is necessary to ensure that the trampoline is stable and the users can balance properly. If your backyard is uneven and sloped, some resources can help to rectify this problem.
For example, you can use leveling blocks or a trampoline leveler. Regardless of the option that you select, you must make sure that you prioritize safety.