Springing into action on trampolines

THERE’S been all sorts of bouncing, leaping and jumping – and sadly breaking of bones – at the latest trampolining hot spot, Ryze, in Dalkeith.

Trampolines are used at the physiotherapy department of the Sick Kids hospital in 1968; below, soldiers take it easy during Tattoo rehearsals at Redford Barracks in 1979

But is it any wonder when trampolines have been almost impossible to resist ever since they were invented in 1936?

While they are now a must-have item for back gardens everywhere – well at least those of suburban homes where young children live – trampolines were once considered an exotic piece of equipment, wheeled out as a novelty for community fairs or special events.

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And these large, rectangular bouncy pieces of equipment were never knowingly seen with a netted safety surround; today’s health and safety officers would be in a cold sweat at the very idea – especially if they clapped eyes on the set-up at the east end of Princes Street in 1976 when students were raising money for charity.

Two teenage soldiers at Redford Barracks, pictured in 1979, from the Junior Leaders regiment rest on their trampoline. Picture: Denis Straughan

Of course, while most people in Edinburgh’s experience of trampolines was confined to jumping on their bed or the occasional birthday party at the Portobello trampoline centre – where the only potential danger was throwing up the jelly and ice cream after a vigorous bout of bouncing – there were others using them for more serious reasons.

The physiotherapy department at the Sick Kids hospital used trampolines as a strengthening aid for children who had been in a plaster cast or had other developmental issues, and the army even got on board during rehearsals for the Military Tattoo. And by the 1990s there was even a Scottish Schools Trampolining Championships with hundreds of kids acrobatically bouncing in beautiful synchronisation.