A trampoline is a fun toy for all ages which provides enjoyment and exercise at the same time. But the structure itself must be solid, which begs the question, can a trampoline be put on a slope?
Trampolines can be installed on uneven ground. While changes to the installation process are needed, it is possible to put a trampoline on a hill or slope. If the slope is minor, anchor the higher trampoline legs into the ground. If not, the ground must be leveled before installation.
There are many different ways to level the area needed for a trampoline. From leveling major or minor slopes to simply uneven ground this article will give you the tools and information you need to get jumping!
Benefits of Level Ground
When placing a new trampoline it’s important to pay attention to the state of the surrounding area. Are there any branches that bouncing kids might hit? Any hazards like large rocks or things that you wouldn’t want to fall on if you bounced out? Is the ground level? This last question is imperative. The ground must be level for the bouncers to be safe.
Before talking about the risks involved in a sloped trampoline, I want to point out that a level trampoline is more fun! If a trampoline is level it can bounce much better. It has the stability to have enough tension for a higher jump and a stable landing.
- If the ground is sloped, then the force of the bouncing will slowly push the lower side of the trampoline and might result in sliding.
- The jumper would naturally gravitate to that side and be unbalanced when landing as well.
- The uneven distribution of weight could also result in wearing on one side of the springs and mat more than the other and causing it to break faster.
It is much better to have a level surface when it comes to trampolines; however, not all hope is lost for those with uneven backyards.
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Major or Minor Slope?
In order to decide which option is best for your trampoline and backyard, it is first important to know how big of a slope you are dealing with. This is done easiest by using a wooden plank about the diameter of the trampoline you are wanting to place.
- You would first place the plank with a carpenter’s level on top of it down where you plan on installing the trampoline.
- Have one person watch the level while another lifts the downhill side of the plank up slowly.
- When the bubble of air in the level is perfectly in the middle it means the plank is level.
- Now measure the distance from the raised end of the plank to the ground.
- This is the distance you will need to keep in mind when installing the trampoline.
To find if you have a major or minor slope take the measurement you just found and divide the diameter of the trampoline by it (make sure they are in the same unit of measurement.) If the result of the calculation is 7 or less then you have a minor slope.
If it is 7 or more then you should either look for a different less severe slope to place your trampoline or follow the tricks outlined here for leveling major slopes.
Minor Slope Installation
If the area you want to put your trampoline is sloped by only a few degrees then the remedy is simple. The solution is to dig small holes just big enough for the trampoline legs on the higher side of the slope.
When doing this you must make sure the ground you do not dig is hard enough that the rest of the trampoline legs will not sink in as well. It is also very helpful to make sure the downhill legs have something blocking them from moving as well.
Whether this means anchoring them into the ground as well (adjusting the higher legs to accommodate the change in the slope,) or placing a small wall next to them. This wall could be a trench or bricks or anything with the right amount of pushback that will dissuade the legs from sliding.
These Leveling Blocks from Amazon are also a viable option for above-ground trampolines facing only a small amount of slope.
In-ground trampolines have their own set of precautions and rules for installation. However, fixing a minor slope problem for this type of trampoline is relatively simple.
Since you are already digging a large hole in your yard simply dig a few inches or centimeters deeper on the higher side of the slope. This is pretty much the same as the solution for the other trampoline type but underground!
Leveling Major Slopes
With a large slope sometimes the best solution is to cut out a terrace from the hill and install the trampoline there. When terracing a hill it might be better to hire a professional if your hill is large. However, it is possible to do it yourself.
You will need walls to hold it in place to protect it from run-off and erosion or small-scale mudslides. These retaining walls’ distance from each other changes depending on the scale and weight they will be holding. Make sure to space them closer together if your hill is larger.
Wood and rock work well for these walls but they should be no higher than four feet tall. In the case of trampoline installation, only one terrace is needed while normal terracing has many levels.
Another option is to grade down the higher end of the slope. This is similar to terracing, though on a smaller scale for only one side of the trampoline. You must make sure to have an extra two feet or so of graded space so the edge of the trampoline does not hit it.
Uneven ground is a much easier problem to fix than those above. Often the same tips and tricks outlined in the rest of this article will work for uneven ground on a smaller scale.
You can lower one of the legs to make the trampoline lower on one portion, you can use leveling blocks to easily raise only a few of the legs, or you could completely flatten the section of the land you need. This problem is simply solved by small acts that result in a level trampoline.