The Health Benefits of Jumping on a Trampoline
Jumping on a trampoline has many health benefits and it is a great way to get kids outside and active instead of sitting in front of a screen all day.
Health Benefits of Jumping on a Trampoline
As a kid, we had a trampoline; in fact there were four trampolines on my block. It was a great way to get outside every day and jump and exercise and get fresh air. Even if there were no other kids around, going out and jumping on the trampoline for hours was normal.
Kids cannot eat chips, drink soda pop or munch on junk food while jumping on a trampoline. In fact, you didn’t even want to eat too big a lunch or dinner for fear you would have to wait to long before you could get back on the trampoline.
NASA did a study that was published in the Journal of Applied Physiology that jumping on a trampoline was the most effective and efficient form of exercise that existed. The study also said that jumping on a trampoline was more effective than running or jogging and 70 percent more effective than a treadmill .
NASA uses trampolines and small trampolines or rebounders to train and keep astronauts in shape.
Jumping on a trampoline cleans toxins and poisons out of the body since it gets the lymphatic system moving. Working the lymphatic system flushes all kinds of dead cells, cancer cells, toxins, fat, bacteria and viruses out of your body.
According to Jordan S. Rubin and Bernard Bulwer, in their book Perfect Weight America, jumping on a trampoline has the following health benefits:
- One of the most complete anaerobic exercises you can do
- Strengthens tendons, muscles and ligaments
- Strengthens the heart, cardiovascular system and lungs
- Demands a lot of energy which means burning calories
- Strengthens the bones, cartilage and joints
- Increases bone density
- Strengthens every cell of the body
- Because of the gravitational force of this rebounding or jumping, every organ in the body is strengthened.
- The strengthening of cells and organs also increases your immune system to fight off illness and disease
Jumping on a trampoline is easier on your knees and ankles than running or jogging since you are not constantly putting all of your body weight down on the hard pavement which can hurt the knees, cause foot problems and shin splints.
Trampolines are Not Just for Kids
Trampolines are great for kids in getting them outside and active and to burn calories. These are the same reasons that jumping on a trampoline is also great for adults. There are varying answers as to how many calories you can burn jumping on a trampoline, depending on the weight of the person, a 150 pound person can burn about 220 calories per hour jumping on a trampoline or rebounder.
Safety Rules for a Trampoline and Lawsuits
When I was a kid in the 1970s, parents worried about other kids jumping on the trampoline and we were taught safety. Parents required that before anyone could jump on the trampoline, they had to have a signed note from their parents.
In those days, it was common to have two people jumping at a time on the trampoline since there were numerous games that two could play, but today that is deemed unsafe. Today’s rules recommend:
- No more than one person on the trampoline at a time.
- No flips, even when I was a kid it was frowned upon to try a back flip. But you shouldn’t even try a forward flip. You can save those for gymnastics class at school with proper supervision and training.
- Cover the springs and have good padding for the metal frame.
- It is very important to always have the trampoline on level ground. Also make sure the trampoline is stable and doesn’t wobble on the ground.
- And obviously, make sure there are no overhead obstructions like branches or any kind of phone or power lines.
Covering the springs might seem a bit much, but I can tell you from personal experience, misjudging a landing and falling in between the springs is no fun.
Nets around trampolines are common, to prevent landing in an odd way that could spring you right off of the trampoline. Like many other things, trampolines can cause serious injury, it is estimated that 60 percent of trampoline injuries occur from falling or landing off of the trampoline so a safety screen makes good sense.
Two people games like seat wars are dangerous and can actually send one person flying off of the trampoline.
Having fun on the trampoline. Photo by Richard Barley
Fun, Games and Exercise on the Trampoline
You can jog or run on the trampoline, great exercise without the pounding on your knees.
A fun game that two or more can play is called add-on. The first person does a trick on the trampoline; it could be nothing more than a seat. The next person gets on and adds on to the seat, maybe a seat and twist. The next person’s turn has to add on to these. It would be something like a seat a twist and then add on a stomach flop. The game continues until someone cannot complete all of the tricks on the trampoline. This game alone can provide hours of fun and exercise.
Practicing add-on yourself is also a great cardio exercise. There are many workouts you can do on a trampoline.
Buy a Well Built Trampoline
Trampolines come in different sizes and shapes. They can be the rectangle sizes of either two-man or four-man or they can be a circular size. Buying a well built trampoline is worth the money, especially for an even bounce and the frame won’t crack in a couple of years. One recommended brand is Springfree Trampolines.
Even with the small trampolines or rebounders, you can get a good workout for a lot less money. Like with anything else, you have to do it more than a couple times a week and more than 10 minutes. Some recommended rebounders are RebounderAIR, Needak and Urban Rebounder.
Copyright © April 2011 Sam Montana
Cover photo by Lauren Manning via Flickr.com
 Journal of Applied Physiology 1980 Nov;49(5):881-7