Indoor trampoline parks are taking the nation by storm, and entrepreneurs looking for a piece of the action have great choices on this list of the 5 best trampoline park franchises of 2018.
This is one franchise segment that spans several categories, including family entertainment, amusement parks, fitness, and extreme sports. Building on the popularity of backyard trampolines, the basic idea is to connect multiple trampolines into courts and arenas that make the perfect place for high-energy, gravity-defying antics and competitive games.
The trampoline park industry is growing at an explosive rate. As recently as 2009, there were only 3 parks in the world – a figure that now stands at well over 1,000.
The attraction of these parks is clear – a place where you can literally bounce off the walls, catch serious air, slam-dunk like an NBA pro, and perform all kinds of aerial acrobatics while landing safely in a pit of foam blocks or giant air bag.
The industry leader is Sky Zone, which established one of the first modern trampoline parks in Las Vegas, Nevada back in 2004. But several new companies have sprung up in recent years and are working hard to catch up.
The competitive aspect of the industry consists of coming up with new, creative, unique innovations in the array of attractions and programs offered. Here are our picks for the top 5 trampoline park franchises of 2018:
1. Sky Zone
Sky Zone saw the backyard trampoline craze and took it to the next level, developing a kind of trampoline court where people could bounce for fun, competitions, and fitness (an hour of bouncing can burn up to 1,000 calories and uses all major muscle groups). The design is a feat of engineering and the company holds U.S. Patent #5,624,122 for its innovative design. The company’s second location became profitable in just six weeks, which is astounding.
Like all trampoline parks, Sky Zone offers a huge array of programs and attractions, but by far it is best known for its Ultimate Dodgeball Championship, where dodgeball teams play on the trampoline court aiming for cash prizes. The eight teams who do the best split $50,000 in cash as follows: The 1st place team wins $20,000, 2nd place wins $10,000, 3rd and 4th places get $4,500 each, and 5th-8th places get $2,750 each. This year marks the seventh year of the competition.
This franchise currently ranks #81 on Entrepreneur magazine’s Franchise 500 list. Founded in 2004 by Rick Platt in Las Vegas and franchising since 2009, the number of locations has expanded rapidly to the current total of 181, of which one is company-owned and 32 are located outside the U.S.
2. Rockin’ Jump
Rockin’ Jump targets more of a youth, kids, and family market than Sky Zone and has established a very solid reputation for birthday parties kids love. It serves better food than most trampoline parks thanks to the fact that the company has its own line of Rockin’ Café restaurants offering fresh-baked, made-to-order pizzas, sandwiches, salads, pretzels, and a wide array of beverages, sports drinks, and lemonade.
Each location has an Open Jump Area that’s good for the youngest kids, including a pit with foam blocks for soft landings as they experiment with different gymnastic moves. Other attractions include obstacle courses, X-Beam Jousting, soft-toss Dodgeball Arena, 360 Slam-Dunk basketball goal, the Vertical Ops rock-climbing wall, and more. The Dublin, California location recently installed a cart-less roller coaster zipline attraction called the Cloud Coaster – something the company is hoping will be included at more locations across the nation.
This franchise currently ranks #165 on Entrepreneur magazine’s Franchise 500 list. Founded in 2010 by Marc Collopy, Drew Wilson, and their families in the San Francisco Bay Area and franchising since 2013, the number of locations has catapulted up to the current total of 42, of which four are company-owned and three are located outside the U.S.
3. Urban Air Adventure Park
Urban Air Adventure Park also has a strong focus on kids, youth, and families and positions itself as more than just a trampoline park, calling itself a full-service family entertainment center. Birthday parties are an important offering at this chain, with a standard birthday package lasting two hours, or a Friday night Glow Party during which the lights are off; the lasers, strobes, and black lights are on, while the kids play glow-in-the-dark dodgeball and jump to their favorite songs.
Some locations are incorporating an Indoor Skydiving attraction (a kind of vertical wind tunnel that keeps you suspended in mid-air) and/or an Indoor Sky Rider Coaster. While attractions vary by location, most will feature the following: trampoline freestyle open jump areas, the Apex (with trampolines on both the floor and walls), Runways (super-long trampolines great for gymnasts, tumblers, and cheerleaders), Dropzone (with giant air bag for soft landings), slam dunk track, trampoline dodgeball arenas, the Urban Warrior Obstacle Course, The TUBES indoor playground, The Warrior Battle Beam, climbing walls, indoor ropes course, and arcade.
Founded in 2011 and franchising since 2014, the number of locations currently stands at 28, of which five are company-owned.
4. Launch Trampoline Park
Launch Trampoline Park locations are year-round destination entertainment centers of connected trampolines that make huge jumping surfaces for their primary target market of families with kids aged 4-14 and secondary target audiences of high school and college students. Each location has designated times for specific groups such as college night, teen night, group exercise sessions, corporate events, etc.
Main areas at each location include the Main Court with wall-to-wall trampolines, the Kid’s Court for younger children under 42 inches tall, Dodgeball Courts that the company considers its main attraction, Slam Dunk Basketball, and a Foam Pit for spectacular jumps with soft landings. Also featured at each location are a Launch Café for food and drinks (and free WiFi) and the Launch Café for video gamers. Special attractions the company has developed include The Challenger obstacle course, Fury: A Laser Tag Experience, and a virtual reality experience called Paradox.
This franchise currently ranks #339 on Entrepreneur magazine’s Franchise 500 list. Founded in 2012 by retired New England Patriots cornerback Ty Law in Warwick, Rhode Island and franchising since 2013, the number of locations currently stands at 13, of which two are company-owned.
5. Big Air Trampoline Park
Big Air Trampoline Park, like its competitors, is primarily about the trampolines (primary trampoline court, foam pit, dodgeball area, basketball dunk area, etc.), but also includes innovative attractions and programs. Its Lazer Maze features multiple game plays and difficulty levels where players face the challenge of bouncing their way across a dark room of trampolines filled with a dense field of laser beams without breaking any of them. Younger children who want some laser fun can play Beam Buster, where the goal is to break as many beams as possible in 30 seconds. A leaderboard showcases high scores and gameplay action on digital screens for those waiting in line.
Its Battlebeam attraction is a hand-to-hand combat challenge with soft battering rams on a balance beam to knock each other off into a pit of foam blocks. Additional attractions can include ninja-warrior obstacle courses, a wipeout-style attraction, and unique climbing-wall experiences (with foam blocks below), trapezes, ropes courses, and designated times and areas for the youngest children to bounce safely.
Founded in 2012 by Greg Briggs in Laguna Hills, California and franchising since 2015, there are currently four locations, with two more listed on the company website as “coming soon.”