How old is too old to bounce on a trampoline?
Prince Frederik, 48, is likely pondering that question as he recovers from a spinal fracture sustained last week in a trampoline accident.
The heir to the Danish throne took a tumble on October 13 while using a trampoline designed for elite gymnasts at Gyngemose Hall in a suburb of Copenhagen.
The prince, who is a member of the International Olympic Committee, and who has been active in promoting the role of sports in a healthy lifestyle, will be forced to wear a neck brace for the next 12 weeks.
The incident happened when the royal dad jumped on the trampoline during a private afternoon function in the gym, a palace spokeswoman said. He cracked a bone in his cervical spine, located in the neck.
Several schoolchildren witnessed the accident according to the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet.
Beyond the crown prince’s physical injury, the most noticeable damage may be to his self-esteem.
After his son Prince Christian, 11, was forced to step up and replace his injured father at a reception for Denmark’s Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic competitors, his mother Queen Margrethe II could not resist commenting on her eldest son’s mishap.
Saying that the heir to the throne sent his best wishes to the assembled athletes, she explained his absence from the Royal Palace by pointing out that he was currently “blue and yellow and green and red and white too.”
“Jumping on a trampoline when you are close to 50,” Margrethe, 76, told the gathering, “perhaps it’s not surprising when something goes wrong.”
“But he did it with the best of intentions,” said the Queen, who according to one observer “had a twinkle in her eye” as she spoke.
Crown Prince Frederik is expected to make a full recovery in due course, according to a statement from the royal palace.