Oval vs Round Trampolines: Which is Better for the Backyard?

By Brian Mounts | Jun 01, 2020
Oval vs Round Trampoline

Most of us are familiar with the standard round trampoline that we see in many of our neighbor’s backyards. Die-hard trampoline enthusiasts, however, know full well though that trampolines come in several different shapes and the basic circle isn’t nearly the best.

There are four main trampoline shapes that you can find available in the market. These are the circle, oval, rectangle, and square shapes but there are other styles to like octagons and hexagons.

Of these options, circular trampolines are by far the most commonly chosen of the bunch mainly due to price and ease of placement.

If you want to have a better bounce then squares and rectangles typically do better and if more than one person wants to jump at the same time then ovals and rectangles are better.

If you’ve ever taken a deep look into the large variety of trampolines you can buy, then you’re already aware of the different shapes and sizes you can find. Within each shape there are different trampolines that are both smaller and larger.

From personal-sized mini trampolines to large, hexagonal or oval shaped trampolines, you can be sure that there is a trampoline out there meets your tastes and requirements while hopefully staying under budget.

Are You Considering Buying an Oval Trampoline?

Like I just mentioned, one of the four most commonly purchased trampoline shapes include the oval shape.

Oval trampolines have become a mainstream option over the past several years because they are better for multiple people to jump on at the same time.

If you aren’t familiar with what makes oval trampolines worth buying I don’t blame you because it’s not obvious without understand how they work. The frequency of oval trampolines being sold to homeowners has only risen recently these in the last several years as more and more families are understanding why the increased cost of an oval trampoline is worth it.

Why should you buy an oval trampoline over a circular one? Is there even much of a difference compared to circular trampolines?

They’re both rounded, but each trampoline shape provides the user with a different type of experience so lets dive it a bit and see why ovals are better for two or more jumpers at a time.

What is the Difference Between Oval & Round Trampolines?

The shape of a trampoline determines several different things, namely jump rebound and central points.

The main difference between oval & round trampolines is the bounce one experiences when jumping on them is usually better and safer.

Another obvious difference is the amount of space each shape takes up. Since they are shaped differently, the way each trampoline uses the space in your yard will change as well.

We will explore the differences between these two trampoline shapes by defining each of their main features.

Round Trampoline Features

Round trampolines are known for their standard, circular shape. Springs are equally distributed around the frame, which makes the bounce consistent across the entire trampoline surface.

When one jumps on a round trampoline, they are naturally directed towards the middle. This is true no matter where the jumper came from.

Circular trampoline frames work in a way that allows the entire frame to absorb each bounce. This is beneficial so that no single part of the frame becomes over-worn. This even distribution is also partially responsible for helping users become directed towards the middle when jumping.

Thanks to the way these rounded trampolines are designed, they require less weight and material in order to provide a sturdy frame. Round trampolines are more often lighter, less expensive, and take up less space, which is why they tend to be the best selling trampoline for backyard enthusiasts.

The range of sizes you can find round trampolines start from 3 ft diameter (for personal use) with most topping out at a 15 ft diameter (an average weight limit of 250-350 pounds).

Oval Trampoline Features

Right off the bat, you’ll find that oval trampolines will typically offer a bit more jumping room compared to round trampolines. This is because of the extended, long oval shape. With this design, one can easily bounce from one side to the other for further jumps & leaps.

Just like with round trampolines, the user will experience their movement being directed towards the central area of the trampoline. However, this central area is a bit longer thanks to the oval shape. In fact, if the oval shape is long enough, users will experience two “center points” or a lateral center that can accomodate multiple people at the same time.

A circle draws jumpers to one single point on the mat where as an oval trampoline draws jumpers to a central line on the mat so multiple jumpers aren’t bumping into each other as much.

These two center points to the left and right of the central line are usually times distinct and don’t interfere with one another. This allows for one person to jump on each side of the trampoline with a reduced chance of bouncing into one another. By allowing users more control & accuracy, oval trampolines can offer a safer jumping experience for a couple of people at the same time.

With two center points & additional space for jumping, multiple people will experience ease when using an oval trampoline. This is very useful if you know that more than one person will be using your trampoline simultaneously on a regular basis.

Most oval trampolines are a bit more expensive and harder to put together but not usually enough to offset their benefit in terms of safety.

Here are three highly rated average-sized oval shaped trampolines on Amazon that are not much more expensive than their circular counterparts:

Skywalker Trampolines 16-Foot Oval Trampoline with Enclosure
PAPAJET 14FT Oval Trampolines for Kids
JumpKing 12′ Oval Trampoline With Safety Cage

Even though oval trampolines tend to be larger than their round counterpart, they can potentially offer the illusion of taking up less space in your yard. The oval shape may have the illusion of a slimmer body, resulting in a larger trampoline that looks more efficient in terms of how much space it takes up in your yard.

Running Down the Main Differences Between Round and Oval Trampolines

Now that we’ve covered the defining features of each model, let’s dive deeper into the main differences between these trampolines. As we elaborate on these differences, we will determine what circumstances will call for which trampoline shape:

  1. SHAPE
    Obviously, the main difference between these trampolines is the shape. Oval trampolines will usually take up more space in your yard because of the elongated shape.If you have limited space, then a round trampoline might be a better option. If you have some room to spare, then you may want to consider an oval trampoline.
  2. SPACE
    With oval trampolines taking up more space, they also tend to have a larger jumping surface. This means more jumping room to enjoy. Think about how much room you need & want for jumping. A round trampoline is great for one person and can fit 2, 3, and sometimes 4 people if the diameter is large enough. Oval trampolines can fit multiple people easier than round trampolines in many cases.

    Even if you only want a trampoline to be used by just one person, maybe the elongated shape is preferred if you’re looking for a bit more jumping room.

  3. SAFETY
    While round trampolines are more popular, it’s safe to say that more often an oval trampoline will offer a safer experience for multiple people. This is due to the two center points oval trampolines have. If you know that only one person is going to use the trampoline, then an oval trampoline won’t offer much of a difference in terms of safety.
  4. PRICE
    Generally speaking, round trampolines are cheaper than oval trampolines. This is because they require less material and are manufactured on a larger scale.
  5. ASSEMBLY
    Because oval trampolines are long, they will require a bit more care and attention when it comes to assembly. This shouldn’t be a problem as long as the instructions are followed carefully.
  6. BOUNCE
    Some people complain that oval trampolines don’t offer as much bounce as round ones. This, however, is dependent on the specific design of the trampoline. It is notable that oval trampolines will often have less of a bounce since the longer design distributes the springs a bit differently. However, the amount of bounce experienced directly depends on the number of springs on the specific model. More springs mean more bounce.

Those are the main differences you will find when comparing round & oval trampolines. Other differences found between these trampolines are based on cosmetics such as padding, netting, etc.

For any trampoline, you are going to want to make sure the padding covers up the springs completely, protective netting is provided, a trampoline cover is included, and the frame is protected from outdoor conditions.

The Benefits of Oval Trampolines

There are some obvious benefits that oval trampolines offer which round trampolines don’t features. These benefits include:

  • A larger jumping area to enjoy.
  • Two “center points” which make jumping for multiple people a safer experience.
  • Often times a little bit less bounce, reducing the chance of someone jumping too high.
  • An effect of using the space in your yard more efficiently thanks to its shape.
  • Being a unique style of trampoline that many people haven’t experienced before.

If these benefits are enough for you to choose an oval trampoline over the traditional round one, then, by all means, go for it! Regardless of the benefits we just mentioned, there are definitely circumstances where a round trampoline is better suited.

Other Trampoline Shapes

If you remember, earlier we mentioned the rectangular and square trampolines shapes are commonly used. If you’re interested in the other trampoline shapes available, we will break down for you what rectangular & square trampolines have to offer.

Rectangular Trampolines

Rectangular trampolines are the second most commonly used trampoline shape. They are very popular for the amount of bounce they provide. This trampoline shape is preferred by gymnasts & professional trampolinists.

You get such a high bounce with these trampolines thanks to the way the springs work. The springs create an even, controlled jump & landing for the user. This means higher jumps, which could also mean more risk depending on the user.

These trampolines offer a good amount of space thanks to their longer shape & surface area. With a larger size, rectangular trampolines also come at a higher price tag.

Square Trampolines

Another trampoline shape you may want to consider is the square shape. These trampolines are much better suited for younger children since the jumping surface is more firm.

A nice perk square trampolines have is the fact they offer optimal jumping space since there are no rounded edges. Their frames also tend to be sturdier compared to round trampolines. This does, however, come at a higher price tag.

Since square trampolines are smaller than rectangular trampolines, they will take up less space in your yard while using the space a bit more efficiently compared to a traditional round trampoline.

This post is only one post in my buyers guide to trampolines. You can see the whole trampoline buyers guide here.

Which Shape Trampoline is Safest? Are Oval Trampolines the Best?

If you’re most concerned about what specific trampoline shape is the safest, there are a few different answers depending on your situation.

First and foremost, we will rule out rectangular trampolines as a safe trampoline option. Generally speaking, rectangular trampolines are safe. But because they offer the most bounce, they pose a risk for people who are not acrobatically gifted.

If you need a trampoline for only one person, then a traditional round trampoline is a great option. If you know that you’re going to need a trampoline for multiple people, then you should consider either an oval trampoline model or a round trampoline with a larger diameter.

Square trampolines are a great option for younger children. This is because the spring is not too much and the space provided is optimal. An oval trampoline is also a great option for younger ones to help prevent collisions into one another.

What Makes a Trampoline Considered “Safe”?

While there is no clear answer as to which trampoline shape is exactly the safest, there are several guidelines you should follow in order to make sure your trampoline is safe.

When owning a trampoline, you should always make sure of the following:

  • Always make sure that your trampoline is placed on level ground.
  • Trampolines shouldn’t be placed too close to trees, fences, or other obstacles in the area.
  • It is always better to have protective netting to ensure users do not accidentally jump off the trampoline.
  • Limit the number of people jumping on the trampoline at one time. *This may depend on the trampoline weight limit & size. If you’re unsure, then a one person at a time limit is the safest bet.
  • Always provide adult supervision for younger children and especially those under 5-6 years of age.
  • Do a regular checkup for your trampoline to ensure the springs are in good condition, the mat is securely in place, and the netting is not loose.

As long as you follow these simple rules and take care of your trampoline, see my guide to trampolines for more, then you should have no problems moving forward. Do you know what shape trampoline you want? We hope that the information we provided was useful in helping you make your decision.