Back in my day the trampoline was high off the ground, no net, and lucky to have a foam mat around the edges where the springs are. Not overly safe, I should know as I broke my leg at the age of 4 thanks to the trusty old trampoline.
So now they are designed with you beaut nets around then, foam mats etc. Again, we should know, we've had 1, no actually 2. The first one got damaged within weeks of purchasing it due to a massive storm . The wind was incredible, picked up the trampoline and blew it straight over the fence. It was fixable but the net was a bit damaged. miss 4 was not even 1 at the time. Why did we get a trampoline for an under 1 yr old I have no idea lol. It was good to use as a play pen when the zipper worked. A couple years later the net fell more and more apart, the zipper broke and the mat was completely ruined thanks to one large golden retriever.
A friend bought her kids a new one so offered us their old one, with a net and about 30% padding left. We took it. Still worked. Zipper however was broken so i didn't put bub in there unless i was right there with her.I still then panicked when the other 2 were on because they could still fall through the net where it should've been zipped up. Then there was having to get them on and off safely. It was a bit of a pain but the kids loved jumping on there.
so, recently I went to a friends daughters 3rd party. And in her back yard was a trampoline. But low to the ground. Ideal!! I asked how did they get it so short and she said easy, just took the middle bar out of the legs. You beauty! I couldn't wait to get home to tell DH.
On the weekend we did just that, and lowered the trampoline, meaning no more net was needed. Little man and bub thought it was great. So did the dog actually. He joined them for a jump. But something still wasn't right. The next day I sat outside and said to DH we need a new mat, but they are so expensive I'd hate to waste money on one knowing it'll only last a few months before not only the dog, but the weather will wear it out. I looked up and it hit me, the best idea I've had in a long time. SHADE CLOTH. Let's put shade cloth around the perimeter of the trampoline and do away with the mat that is no longer a mat but instead is bits of blue plastic we find all over the yard.
Dh says ooh good idea, I've even got a little bit up the back of the yard, lets see if it works. I rip a little bit away of the blue plastic and we use ties to secure the shade cloth on. Next we know, about 1 hour later we have done the entire trampoline. It even blends in with the nature now.
Now bub can crawl outside and on the trampoline and if she falls it's not very far. She loves to sit on there with miss 4 and little man bouncing her all around. Then the dog hops on too and she giggles away at that. I think it's the best idea I've had in ages.