OUR VIEW: Jumping has its ups and downs

The SE Texas Record Jun. 15, 2015, 12:14pm


Jumping is fun, but also dangerous – depending on where and how high you jump, and how agile and fragile you are.

The danger of jumping out of airplanes or even from high tree branches is obvious, but you can also hurt yourself jumping on a trampoline, jumping rope, or doing jumping jacks, if you land wrong or your bones are brittle.

Suffice it to say that anyone jumping does so at his own risk, an obvious fact that is reiterated and reinforced for the benefit of bouncing patrons by signs posted on the walls at Jumping World USA in Beaumont.

Patrons are also required to sign (or have a parent or legal guardian sign) a waiver acknowledging that “participation in Jumping World trampoline games or activities entails known and unanticipated risks that could result in physical or emotional injury, paralysis, death, or damage to myself, to property, or to third parties.”

The waiver also includes an expression of the signer's understanding that “such risks simply cannot be eliminated without jeopardizing the essential qualities of the activity” and an affirmation releasing Jumping World from all liability.

In addition to “the usual risk of cuts and bruises,” the waiver warns that trampoline users “often fall off equipment, sprain or break wrists, ankles and legs, and can suffer more serious injuries as well.” Jumpers “often fall on each other, resulting in broken bones and other serious injuries. Double bouncing, more than one person per trampoline, can create a rebound effect causing serious injury. Flipping and running and bouncing off the walls [are] dangerous and can cause serious injury and must be done at the participant's own risk. There is also a risk of colliding with or being landed on by jumpers of a different size.”

Lindsey Bryant broke her foot jumping at Jumping World this spring and is now suing in Jefferson County District Court for up to $1 million.

What part of the waiver she signed does she not understand?

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