A trampoline is an excellent way to get exercise and some time outside. It is also important to make sure you have a proper location that is safe and will provide a soft landing in case of an accident. The same thing goes for building a playground of any kind, and rubber mulch is a popular choice for both of these situations. Let’s explore the pros and cons of using rubber mulch for your trampoline or playground area.
Why Put Rubber Mulch Under a Trampoline
Rubber mulch is a popular surface for placing under trampolines and other playground areas because it creates a soft landing and does not compact over time.
It is also not as likely to cause abrasions or scratches, such as gravel or stone would do. Rubber mulch is long-lasting and does not decay as quickly as wood, and it does not need to be refreshed to keep it fluffy.
Rubber mulch is made from discarded tires that have been treated and ground into the final product. The problem is that even though they last a long time, they still break down and can release toxic chemicals into the soil.
Some of these chemicals include heavy metals, plastics, and other things you might not want your children exposed to overtime. This is especially true for younger children who might put some material into their mouths.
What is Best to Put Under Trampoline?
Although rubber mulch has many advantages in providing a soft landing and low maintenance, it also has some downsides that you might want to avoid. If you want an alternative that does not leach toxic chemicals into the soil and water or expose your family to them, you might be wondering what you might use as alternatives. Fortunately, you have a few choices.
One choice is sand. Sand is soft and can absorb impact almost as good as rubber mulch. It is much better than hitting the hard lawn underneath. It costs about the same as rubber mulch and has many of the same benefits. If you choose this alternative, be sure to get play sand that has been cleaned, especially for use by children.
Another excellent alternative is to get a net around your trampoline. Special safety nets are an excellent way to prevent any falls from the trampoline at all. This will also allow you to use other materials, such as wood chips or pea gravel as a base. Pea gravel and wood chips are still much better than the hard ground when it comes to absorbing falls, but the net will make sure that falls do not have in the first place.
When installing your trampoline, it is a good idea to do some preplanning about where you want to place it. It should be placed at least three feet from any objects, such as buildings, trees, or anything else that could cause harm if a fall should occur. While rubber provides a soft landing, the toxic chemicals might also pose a long-term concern. It is always best to weigh the pros and cons of any base material that you choose for your trampoline.