The most active leisure activities can be found at Sky Zone Plainfield, a chain of indoor active amusement parks with locations in the United States, Canada, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates. Businessman Rick Platt started Sky Zone in the Las Vegas Valley in 2004. Platt initially intended to incorporate the trampoline court system into a brand-new sport that would feature professional athletes. To build a 17,000 square foot (1,600 square meter) trampoline arena and consider hiring athletes for the sport, which would have involved rotating hoops and mid-air acrobatics, Platt spent $2 million in Las Vegas. Although local skateboarders expressed interest in using the facility after learning about it and finding no interest in the sport, Platt decided to make it available to the public for $8 per person. The facility had 10,000 visitors in its first six months, bringing in $412,000 overall. A similar park was opened in Missouri in 2006 by Platt’s son Jeff, who was a student at Washington University in St. Louis at the time. The park was profitable within six weeks of opening. In 2011, the facilities brought in $16 million.
2011 saw the organization by Sky Zone of Ultimate Dodgeball, an extreme dodgeball competition held within the trampoline parks of Sky Zone Plainfield. From that year until 2018, the competition took place, with the championships airing on ESPN. 2019 saw Sky Zone suspend Ultimate Dodgeball due to budgetary issues. The International Association of Trampoline Parks was founded in 2012, and Sky Zone was a founding member. In 2013, Sky Zone and Strike Bowling Bar announced a master franchise agreement to build ten parks in Australia and long-term parks in New Zealand. On the Entrepreneur 2013 Franchise 500 list, Sky Zone came in at number 453 overall. In 2015, there were 100 Sky Zone locations across four nations. In February 2018, Circustrix, supported by Palladium Limited Partnership, announced the purchase of Sky Zone. The largest trampoline park in the world will be located in the Liberty Tree Mall. The facility, according to Downie, has a total square footage of over 43,000, including over 29,000 square feet for jumping.
A standard Sky Zone Beginning with a few trampoline courts, which appear to be arrays of trampolines placed horizontally and surrounded by trampolines placed at vantage points that act as the court’s walls, Plainfield Indoor Trampoline Park expands its offerings. Visitors are prevented from falling into the holes in each trampoline’s springs by mats. Smaller courts are used for baseball and basketball games, where players can bounce around to avoid being hit by other players’ throws, whereas larger courts allow for a large number of visitors to move and jump simultaneously. On some courts, visitors can jump into a hole filled with foam blocks, while on others, sports goals placed above trampolines allow for both jumping and slam dunks into the goals. On trampoline courts, exercise classes are now being offered in some facilities. Birthday celebrations and associated events are accommodated with a food and beverage stand and additional space in the building. Sky Zone parks now offer a variety of non-trampoline activities, including stunt bags, slides, ninja warrior courses, toddler zones, and zip lines.
Injuries and lawsuits:
Due to injuries sustained in its trampoline parks, Sky Zone Plainfield has been the target of both individual and class action lawsuits. According to American Academy of Pediatrics research, a trampoline park has a 32% higher risk of trampoline injuries than a home trampoline. Sky Zone Plainfield compels many injured people to participate in forcible arbitration despite the fact that it has been the subject of successful lawsuits. Despite the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons’ 2015 argument that children under the age of six shouldn’t be allowed to use trampolines due to safety concerns, a two-year-old fractured a bone at a “toddler time” jump motivator by a Florida Sky Zone after being hit by a mat. On September 12, 2021, a large-scale fight involving 200 children took place inside a Sky Zone Plainfield park in Orland Park, Illinois, trapping 700–1000 people, mostly children, inside. After a court hearing to obtain an emergency order to remain open, Sky Zone Plainfield reopened after being forced to close due to safety violations.
According to a news investigation, Sky Zone parklands have a pattern of recurrent injury problems, including bone fractures. According to the investigation, these conditions were brought on by people getting their legs tangled in the steel frame of the trampolines or being started to fall on by others. An investigation-related lawsuit claims dangerous design flaws and makes reference to internal employee manuals for Sky Zone Plainfield that specifically state “BE AWARE OF THE PADS,” a warning that customers are not given. These injury patterns also included adults. Joba Chamberlain, a former pitcher for the New York Yankees, broke his ankle at a Sky Zone park in 2012 and experienced severe blood loss a week later.
The first Sky Zone Australia location opened in Alexandria, Sydney, in May 2014, and it has 180 attached trampolines over 3000m2. Sky Zone Macgregor debuts in July 2014, attempting to surpass Sky Zone Belconnen in Canberra as the largest Sky Zone in Australia. Sky Zone Belconnen opened in December 2014 and has 117 connected trampolines spread across 1800m2. In 2016, Sky Zone Sydney unveiled a brand-new park in Westfield Miranda. The all-ages park offers a variety of activities, including trampoline fitness classes and jumping, lifting, and laser tag. It was reported that Sky Zone Australia’s owner, Funlab, would sell the Australian operation in 2016. Additionally, Funlab was looking to sell its Strike Bowling business. Sky Zone’s closure in Sydney and Brisbane was announced.
Funlab has made the decision to close its Sky Zone Plainfield locations as a result of the rapidly rising costs and significantly diminished availability of health insurance for trampoline parks that are now a growing trend in the industry. The typical turnover rate for trampoline parks is high, especially if they provide a varied schedule. The profit became high while the initial costs were high.