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How To Start A Trampoline Park

How To Start A Trampoline Park

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How To Start A Trampoline Park

How To Start A Trampoline Park

As a child, did you spend hours bouncing on your backyard trampoline? You and your friends probably all tried to enjoy it at once, bouncing precariously close to the edge. Trampoline parks bring that same joy of jumping on trampolines to a larger – and safer – scale. While these businesses are still fairly new, they’ve enjoyed tremendous success so far.

With this guide, you’ll be well on your way to understanding the business overview, the necessary steps to launch your trampoline park, and answers to common questions.

Business Overview

Indoor trampoline parks have brought the backyard trampoline to a whole new level. These parks feature multiple trampolines surrounded by safety padding, essentially creating a “floor” that’s made for bouncing and jumping. These parks typically market to kids and families, giving children a safe way to play for hours on end. They also create a valuable social activity, allowing kids to meet other children as they play and making an ideal environment for birthday parties and get-togethers.

These parks have quickly grown from trampoline-only facilities to more involved businesses. Many now combine trampoline centers with other activities, like laser tag, rock climbing wall, or fitness classes. While trampoline parks still market heavily toward kids, they’re enjoyed by teens and adults, too. They are safer than backyard trampolines, large enough for plenty of people to enjoy them at once, and they provide quite the athletic workout.

Industry Summary

The trampoline park industry is part of the larger leisure and entertainment sector. It has gained popularity over the past decade, particularly among young families, fitness enthusiasts, and those looking to engage in group activities.

According to Market.us, the global trampoline park market reached a valuation of $838 million in 2022 and is expected to grow 15.6% annually between 2023 and 2032.

Industry Trends

The indoor trampoline park industry is still relatively new, but it’s already been affected by and responded to many trends. According to US Design Lab, the exercise and physical fitness element of trampoline parks are appealing to many. NASA scientists reported that jumping on a trampoline for 10 minutes offers a better cardiovascular workout than you would see after running for 33 minutes. Parks can harness this benefit to appeal to adults seeking to get fit or parents looking to keep their kids healthy and active.

Themes have become important elements in generating traffic at these parks, too. Themes like date nights, disco nights, and toddler time appeal to different audiences, creating exciting events and expanding a business’ customer base.

These parks are also increasingly being used for different purposes. Fundraising for nonprofits and corporate team-building events are just a few ways that these parks can become more versatile, increase their income streams, and even generate increased traffic during off-peak times.

According to Regiondo, as the trampoline park industry has grown, customers have begun to seek out increased variety. The days of a park consisting only of trampolines are over – now parks need to give customers choices between different activities to keep them engaged. Adding new equipment and activities like ninja courses and rock climbing facilities can help keep these parks appealing, encouraging customers to return again and again.

Target Market

One of the great benefits of a trampoline entertainment center is that it can be tailored to appeal to many audiences. The primary audience will always be families with children who are looking for a way to keep their children active and entertained. Secondary audiences may be adventure-seeking teens and adults who want to experience a day of fun activities, corporate staff seeking a team-building experience, and nonprofits looking for a fundraising opportunity. 

Checklist To Start An Indoor Trampoline Park

Starting an indoor trampoline park can be an incredibly rewarding experience, but it’s important to make sure you’re prepared for the challenges ahead. Use this checklist to help get your business off on the right foot.

Step 1: Research the Market

Starting a trampoline park is an exciting venture, but it requires careful and thoughtful research to ensure there is a market hungry for this unique blend of entertainment and fitness. Understanding whether there’s sufficient demand for a trampoline park in a particular location you can minimize the risk of investing in a business that may not have a sufficient customer base.

While there is no way to guarantee success for any business, here are some cost-effective ways to get a better understanding if your local area can support a trampoline park:

Local surveys: Conducting local surveys in malls, schools, and community centers can provide direct feedback from potential customers. You could use free online survey tools or face-to-face interviews to gather information.

Competitor analysis: Analyzing existing trampoline parks and other entertainment venues in your area helps you understand the competitive landscape. Visiting these places and observing the customer flow and offerings will give you insights.

Social media engagement: Creating a hypothetical social media page for your trampoline park and engaging with potential customers can be used to gauge interest. Share your ideas and ask for opinions. It’s a free and interactive way to assess demand.

Collaborate with local businesses: Partner with local sports clubs, schools, and family-oriented businesses for joint surveys. It’s a win-win as they also get to understand their market better.

Utilize public data: Various governmental and non-governmental organizations provide data on population demographics, income levels, and interests. Many of these resources are freely available online, such as the Census Bureau or local economic development offices that can guide your decision-making process.

Consult local experts: Engaging with local business advisors or chambers of commerce might require some investment but can provide tailored insights specific to your location.

Step 2: Write a Business Plan

Starting a trampoline park requires a significant initial investment, and it can also take a few years before the business turns a profit. If you plan to approach banks or investors for funding, then you’ll need to draw up a detailed business plan.

But, a business plan isn’t just a document to get funding; it’s the essence of your dream translated into practical terms. It’s the series of jumps and landings that will take you from idea to successful execution.

Some of the key sections in a trampoline park business plan include:

Market analysis and target audience: After researching the market, this section details your target audience and how your trampoline park will meet their specific needs. It’s about knowing who’s going to jump and why.

Services and offerings: Will you have fitness classes? Special trampolines for younger kids? Describe the unique experiences your trampoline park will offer.

Safety protocols: Safety is paramount in a trampoline park. This section will show potential investors and lenders that you’ve thought about risk management, insurance, and safety measures.

Financial projections and seasonality: This is where you’ll present your expected earnings, expenses, and growth, factoring in seasonality if relevant. Like the varying heights of a trampoline bounce, your revenue might go up and down during different parts of the year.

Marketing and community engagement strategy: Explain how you’ll reach your audience, create buzz, and become a community hub. This isn’t just about advertising; it’s about creating connections and making your trampoline park a local favorite.

Related: How to write a business plan

Step 3: Source Funding

With a well-researched market and a robust business plan in hand, the next step is to navigate the financial waters. Let’s explore the various options and considerations for funding your trampoline park.

Personal savings: Starting a trampoline park can be a substantial investment. From purchasing trampolines, safety equipment, and insurance to leasing a space, the costs can add up. Personal savings are typically needed for at least part of these expenses, though outside funding is often required due to the high cost.

Bank loans: Traditional bank loans are a common option to fund trampoline parks. Lenders usually require borrowers to invest at least 15% of their personal funds into a new business, have a credit score of above 650, and have sufficient collateral. However, if the bank feels the loan is too risky, they might utilize an SBA (Small Business Administration) loan guarantee. This government-backed assurance can make lending more accessible and less risky for the bank.

Angel investors: Angel investors might be local individuals with a higher net worth and an interest in your type of business. They can provide significant funds but might expect equity or other types of return on investment. It’s worth noting that attracting angel investors can be challenging for trampoline parks, as they usually seek high growth and scalable businesses.

Related: Finding the money to start a business

Step 4: Register the Business

Registering your business and making it legal is a structured process that varies from state to state. After getting the funding out of the way, the next step is to make sure the business is legal to operate.

Choose a business structure: The first thing you’ll need to decide is what business structure is best for your business. This could be a sole proprietorship, a partnership, a limited liability company (LLC), or a corporation. Each of these structures has different implications for liability, taxes, and administrative complexity. Because trampoline parks, given their nature, usually require consideration of liability and many small business owners opt for an LLC or corporation because it provides personal liability protection.

Related: Comparison of business structures

Business name registration: After registering the business structure, you may need to register your business name. This process will vary depending on what business structure you pick. Sole proprietors and partnerships will often be required to register a “Doing Business As” (DBA), while corporations and LLCs register with the state during the formation process.

Related: Tips and ideas for naming a trampoline park

During this time, it’s also a good idea to check if the name you want is available as a web domain, even if you’re not ready to set up a website yet.

Related: Finding a domain name for your business

Obtain business licenses and permits: Ensure that you comply with any unique requirements related to trampoline parks, which may involve safety, and building permits. Also, if you are serving food, licensing and inspections from the Health Department will likely be necessary.

In addition, there will likely be a variety of general licenses or permits needed before opening. This could include a business license, seller’s permit, and Employer Identification Number (EIN).

Related: State guides for general business licensing

Step 5: Find a Location

With funding secured (a step that’s essential before signing any contracts due to potential delays or denial), the thrilling part begins: acquiring and setting up the location. This isn’t just about finding an empty space and filling it with trampolines; there are industry-specific considerations that can make or break your venture. Let’s explore these vital aspects.

Scout the area: Look for places with good visibility, accessibility, and proximity to your target market. According to the International Association of Trampoline Parks (IATP), a building should have a minimum of 18,000 square feet (most are between 25,000 and 35,000 sqf) and a ceiling height of 17 feet high or taller.

Analyze competition: Visit other similar businesses to gauge the local competition and identify what might make your trampoline park stand out. Even though there may not be another trampoline park in your area, there is still competition for entertainment spending.

Understand zoning laws: Ensure the area is zoned for your type of business. Local regulations might have specific requirements for a recreational facility like a trampoline park.

Related: Choosing a business location

Step 6: Set Up the Park

The next stage is to design the layout and begin purchasing equipment. Creating the best experience of a trampoline park is more than just placing trampolines in a room; it’s about creating an engaging and safe environment for guests while optimizing the space for profitability. To do so requires a thoughtful blend of creativity and adherence to industry guidelines.

The placement of trampolines demands careful attention to distances between each jumping area and the walls to minimize collisions. Different zones, such as the main jumping area, specialized basketball or dodgeball courts, a separate children’s zone, parents’ lounge, lockers, seating areas, and snack bars all contribute to diverse attractions.

Safety is paramount too, with clear signage, visibility, and specific flooring and padding following industry standards. Integrating the park’s theme and branding through color schemes and logos enhances aesthetic appeal, while the layout should be optimized for efficient guest flow and operational needs.

Since the layout of the park is so important, some entrepreneurs will consult with specialized design firms in order to maximize the use of space, ensure safety, and enhance the visitor experience.

Step 7: Create a Marketing Plan

Getting ever so close to opening, the next step is to begin letting people know about the trampoline park. Marketing a trampoline park requires a mix of traditional and online strategies to attract a wide range of customers.

Starting with social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, they can be instrumental in showcasing your park’s fun features, exciting events, and special offers. A well-maintained website with engaging videos and photographs, along with customer reviews, can also act as a powerful online storefront.

Claiming your Google Business Profile and listing on other no-cost relevant business directories like Yelp allows customers to find your park in search results and on maps. In addition, online advertising through platforms like Google Ads can target local customers who are searching for family-friendly activities.

Other marketing approaches can include hosting launch parties, or open house events can create initial excitement. Collaborating with schools, sports teams, and local businesses for special events or promotions helps in community engagement. Joining your local Chamber of Commerce can foster connections and enhance your presence in the community. Also, don’t overlook flyers, brochures, and local newspaper ads, especially for promoting seasonal or special events. A well-placed billboard near high-traffic areas can also generate awareness of your park.

With a balanced mix of online creativity and grounded, community-focused traditional methods, you’ll be leaping toward a successful launch and continued growth.

Related: Low-cost ideas to market a new business

Step 8: Hire Staff

Trampoline parks are family-oriented businesses, so it’s particularly important to find staff who will enjoy working in that environment. Staff who genuinely enjoy working with kids and who have friendly, outgoing personalities can make a great impression on parents and kids. This positive interaction can make each visit to the park memorable for customers, encouraging them to return again in the future.

Common types of employees in a trampoline park might include reception staff to welcome guests, floor monitors to ensure safety, maintenance crews to keep equipment in top shape, and management personnel to oversee operations. Additionally, instructors for specialized activities or classes might be required.

Before hiring, there are legal requirements that need to be met to ensure everything is in order. These include obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS, setting up tax withholding, verifying employee eligibility, complying with state-specific new hire reporting, and more. Each state is different, and it’s important to understand the requirements as an employer.

In addition to budgeting for labor costs, other costs come with hiring employees. These expenses can include worker’s compensation insurance, unemployment insurance, and paid time off.

Related: State guides to hiring your first employee

Step 9: Prepare to Open!

It’s worth noting that the needs of each individual trampoline park will be different, influenced by location, size, target market, and other factors. A few of the most common loose ends may include:

Business insurance: Given the high risk of customer injury, insurance is highly recommended. Specialized trampoline park insurance can cover unique aspects of the business.

We recommend getting at least three insurance quotes, including local insurance agents and online providers like Coverwallet or Hiscox to get the best coverage and price.

Set up bookkeeping: Implementing a robust bookkeeping system, such as Wave Accounting (FREE) or Quickbooks, will help in tracking financial activities, monitoring performance, and fulfilling tax obligations.

Open a bank account: Having a separate business bank account simplifies managing finances and underscores the professionalism of your operation.

Industry-specific management or Point of Sale (POS) software: Systems like LilYPad, Active8, or iClassPro can help in managing bookings, sales, memberships, and customer relations, tailored to the needs of a trampoline park.

Accepting credit cards: Setting up credit card processing is an expectation for most consumers and essential for smooth transactions. If not using a specialized POS, companies like Square or Stripe are popular options.

Prepare for the grand opening: Planning an engaging grand opening, with promotions, special activities, and local engagement, can create initial momentum.

This material is property of StartingYourBusiness.com

Common Questions When Starting A Trampoline Park

How much does it cost to start a trampoline park?

Starting a trampoline park is an exciting venture, but it comes with substantial financial considerations. The total cost to kickstart a trampoline park can vary widely, typically ranging from $200,000 to $3,000,000, depending on various factors such as location, size, and equipment. Here’s a breakdown to provide an understanding of the primary initial costs involved:

Location and lease costs: Depending on the location and size of the facility, purchasing a space could range from $200,000 to $800,000, while leasing will require deposits. Renovation and build-out expenses can add significantly to this amount.

Equipment and installation: Quality trampolines, safety pads, nets, and additional recreational features could cost anywhere from $100,000 to $1,200,000, including installation.

Insurance: Initial insurance premiums for liability and property insurance might fall in the range of $10,000 to $25,000, depending on the provider and coverage needed.

Marketing: Launching the business with a robust marketing campaign can vary, but budgeting around $5,000 to $15,000 for initial promotional activities would be wise.

Permits and licensing: The cost of obtaining necessary permits, inspections, and licenses may range from $500 to $2,000, depending on local regulations.

Technology and Point of Sale systems: Investing in management software and payment systems could cost between $5,000 and $15,000.

Staffing and training: Initial recruitment and training may amount to $5,000 to $10,000, including uniforms and materials.

Other miscellaneous costs: Think about professional fees for lawyers or accountants, office supplies, and initial inventory for the snack bar, which might add another $10,000 to $50,000.

It’s also a good idea to have three to six months of operating expenses on hand as a buffer. This additional financial cushion will help you navigate any unforeseen challenges or fluctuations in revenue, especially in the initial phases of your trampoline park business.

While these figures offer a broad overview, it’s essential to consult with industry professionals and local experts for precise estimates tailored to your unique situation.

How much can a trampoline park owner make?

The profitability of a trampoline park can vary widely depending on factors such as location, size, customer base, and management efficiency. Generally, revenue for a trampoline park might come from ticket sales, party bookings, and additional offerings like food and merchandise.

Let’s take a hypothetical example:

Revenue: Suppose the park charges $15 per hour and averages 200 customers per day. That’s $3,000 daily or roughly $90,000 monthly. Adding revenue from parties, food, and merchandise might bring total revenue to $120,000 per month.

Expenses: Monthly expenses, including lease, staffing, utilities, marketing, maintenance, insurance, and other operational costs, might total around $60,000 to $70,000.

Profit: Subtracting expenses from revenue, the monthly profit would range from $50,000 to $60,000, leading to an annual profit of $600,000 to $720,000.

This example is a simplified illustration, and the real numbers can fluctuate considerably. The profit margin for trampoline parks has been known to range from 20% to 40% depending on various factors.

Soft Play, for instance, reports that a park in California reports annual profits of $780,000, and some franchises make millions in profits each year.

Keep in mind that those results aren’t typical of a single independent park, but independent parks can still be quite successful. Factors like a park’s location, number of play related competitors, event offerings, and profit margins will all affect its profitability. Careful planning and market research can help to increase the chances of a park being a success.

What skills are needed to run a trampoline park?

Running an indoor trampoline park doesn’t require a business degree, but certain experiences and skills can be helpful.

Physical fitness and safety background: A background in physical fitness and safety can be an asset when designing a facility and creating fun, stimulating, and safe activities for kids and adults.

Experience working with children: Trampoline parks’ customers are primarily children, so experience and love of working with kids are valuable traits.

Creativity: A little creativity will be highly valuable when designing the facility’s layout and coming up with unique marketing and event ideas.

Customer service skills: Previous customer service experience will be helpful when interacting with customers and ensuring they have a positive experience with every visit.

Management experience:. Experience in hiring, training, and managing staff will ensure that a business owner can put together a great team of employees who can represent the park well.

Are there trampoline park franchise opportunities?

Instead of starting from scratch, there are several trampoline park franchises on the market, with Sky Zone, Altitude Trampoline Park, and Urban Air Adventure Park being the best-known ones.

Going with this business model, there will be fees additional costs from the initial franchise fee and ongoing royalties that will typically range from 5-8% of total revenue. While this may high, a good franchise will provide name recognition, established procedures, marketing support, training, and buildout support.

What is the NAICS code for a trampoline park?

The NAICS code for a trampoline park is 713990.

The NAICS code (North American Industry Classification System) is a federal system to classify different types of businesses for the collection and reporting of statistical data.

Related: What is a NAICS code?

Resources:
International Association of Trampoline Parks

How To Start A Trampoline Park

How To Start A Trampoline Park

Greg Bouhl

Greg Bouhl

Welcome! My name is Greg Bouhl, and I am a serial entrepreneur, educator, business advisor, and investor.

StartingYourBusiness.com is here because of the many clients I worked with who made decisions based on inaccurate and outdated information.

Starting a business is hard, but here you will find the practical tools, resources, and insider tips to help you successfully start a business.

If there is a question about starting a business or help finding a resource, I'm here to help!

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