As a longtime trampoline enthusiast and backyard design blogger, one of the top questions I get from readers is: “Are rectangular trampolines better than round ones?”
After years of personal experience jumping on both styles of trampolines and extensive research on hundreds of models, I have come to some conclusions on if rectangular trampolines are indeed better.
In short rectangular trampolines excel in certain areas like performance bounce, fitting into small spaces, and durability over time. They provide even jumping across the surface and can adapt to narrow yards. However, round trampolines may be safer for smaller kids and are typically more budget friendly. The “better” shape depends on your priorities around bounce, safety, space and cost for your family’s needs.
Are Rectangular Trampolines Better – Comparison with round Trampolines
Let’s compare rectangle trampolines with Round ones on the basis of following four factors:
- Performance – The Bounce Battle
- Safety First
- Yard Space Efficiency
- Cost Comparisons
1. Performance – The Bounce Battle
How high will you or your kids be able to bounce on a trampoline? The trampoline’s shape actually matters when it comes to performance.
Rectangular trampolines provide more even bounce distribution, meaning you’ll get major air no matter where you jump on the mat. Round trampolines tend to provide peak bounce only when you jump near the center. Around the edges of a round trampoline, performance drops off.
So for athletes looking to perfect skills or families who want freedom of movement, rectangular is my winner for better bounce!
2. Safety First
As a parent myself, safety is my number one priority when it comes to backyard play equipment. So in the round vs rectangular debate, which shape offers more protection?
Both shapes have safety merits, but rounds edge out rectangles when it comes to keeping young kids safe. Rounds naturally corral jumpers toward the center and limit air, while rectangles with their spacious mats and bouncy reputation can mean higher jumps and more risk for beginners.
Many safety measures like padded frames, stability systems and net enclosures can reduce risks on both shapes. But inherently, I still feel rounds are a safer pick for smaller children due to jump control. Adults and mature kids ready to take on tricks appreciate the openness of rectangles. Choose what’s right for your family’s abilities!
3. Yard Space Efficiency
What if your yard is narrow or you want the trampoline tucked neatly into a corner? Round trampolines need ample clearance on all sides, meaning placement flexibility can be limited.
Rectangular trampolines on the other hand can easily adapt to long, narrow yards and unconventionally shaped spaces. Their elongated shape and stability system allows them to function beautifully even in off-kilter patio corners without compromising bounce.
So when it comes to making the most of quirky small backyards, rectangles have the spatial advantage over rounds!
4. Cost Comparisons
In the world of backyard accessories, few investments feel as big as a trampoline. So how do prices stack up between shapes?
On average, purchasing a similarly sized rectangular trampoline will add a 15-30% upcharge versus choosing its round counterpart. Why? The durable elongated design demands more steel for the frame, specialty fabric customization and additional support components. All that engineering adds cost.
Budget focused? Rounds definitely help cash flow go farther. But remember a deal on an undersized round that your family quickly outgrows isn’t ultimately cost effective. I always recommend buying a trampoline one size larger than you think you need with the future in mind. The extra square footage of rectangles naturally builds in longevity!
The Bottom Line: Are Rectangular Trampolines Better?
After using both types with my kids over the years and constantly keeping up with innovations and safety advancements, I can definitively say…rectangular trampolines are better in certain circumstances.
What circumstances exactly? Rectangles excel when:
- You need performance bounce – Rectangles give consistent air.
- Safety isn’t a top concern – Rounds protect best here.
- Space is limited – Rectangles tuck nicely into landscapes.
- The budget allows – You’ll typically pay more for rectangles.
So think carefully about these factors in relation to YOUR family’s backyard fun goals before committing to a shape. If safety trumps all, maybe a round is in fact better for you. Or if bounce training is the goal and yard space is tight, a rectangle checks all the boxes.
Make sure the reasons YOU want a trampoline align with the inherent strengths offered by that shape. Setting realistic shape expectations from the start prevents buyer’s remorse down the road!
The Best Rectangular and Round Trampolines on the Market
Now that we’ve weighed “the great trampoline debate” between rectangles and rounds, you may be wondering where to find the highest quality options for purchase. I track all the brands on an annual basis as models change rapidly. Here is my expert top pick for 2023 in both shapes:
Best Rectangular Trampoline
Best Round Trampoline
I select both these brands year after year for their trendsetting features, top-notch materials like UV-resistant jump mats and steel rust protections, as well as customer friendly perks like fast installation, quality packaging and extended part guarantees.
And if you invest in one of these industry leaders, occasional upkeep steps I’ll cover next ensures backyard fun for years without additional major equipment purchases.
Caring for Your Rectangular or Round Trampoline Investment
The cruel winter ice, blistering summer sun and other temperamental seasonal weather can gradually degrade trampoline parts, shortening safe equipment lifespan. Don’t let the seasons steal backyard memories prematurely!
Implement this easy quarterly trampoline maintenance checklist I developed over the years to maximize hardware longevity regardless of shape:
Inspect the connecting hooks that attach the jump mat to the springs. Replace any deteriorated hooks immediately before further damage occurs. Tighten any hooks that have loosened over time.
Wipe down the jump mat surface thoroughly with a vinyl cleaner solution to remove accumulated pollen, dirt and mud. This keeps the fabric pores from clogging and deterioration starting.
Frame Bolts Refreshen
Re-tighten all nuts/bolts securing the frame pieces together with the appropriate sized wrench. Weather shifts loosen connections over time. Confirm all pieces join tightly.
Net Tension Refresh
Loosen the continuous poles threaded through the net enclosure. Tighten and re-secure so net remains taught with no sagging sections. This avoids tears from jumpers hitting loose spots.
Do rectangles handle more jumpers at once?
Yes, the extended size provides room for concurrent bouncing.
Is it easier to learn tricks on rectangles?
The consistent bounce helps master complex skills anywhere on the mat.
Do tall people fit better on rectangular mats?
Yes, the elongated design reduces feeling confined even for adults.
Can I put a rectangle trampoline on grass?
Rectangles must be leveled, so grass works only if flat and sturdy beneath.
Do the nets on rectangles last longer?
Comparable net lifespan between shapes when following care tips.
Is jump experience less springy on rectangles?
No difference in spring mechanics. Both provide excellent lift.
Do rectangles have more frame pieces to assemble?
Slightly more due to extended length needing support.
Are replacement parts harder to find for rectangles?
Top brands offer comparable accessory availability between the two.
Can a rectangle fit in a round trampoline cover?
No, the custom sizing won’t align properly for coverage.
Is it unsafe to jump near rectangle edges?
No, performance and stability remain consistent across the mat.
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