One of the positive outcomes of being in quarantine and not being able to go to the gym is finally ordering a mini trampoline! While I was waiting for it to arrive I came across this Instagram post by 74 year-old actress Goldie Hawn and I was sure I had made the right choice. I want to have just as much energy and look just as good as Goldie when I’m in my 70s!
I’ve been using the mini-trampoline, also known as the rebounder, for the past 6 months, an average of 3-4 times a week, for about 30 minutes each time. It was love at first jump, and I’ve been on a honeymoon with my rebounder ever since, with the love growing as time passes.
So I wanted to share with you this new love of mine. A workout that is easy, versatile, portable low-impact and relatively inexpensive. But more importantly it’s so much fun, you will feel like a kid again.
“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.”
George Bernard Shaw
Let’s get into more detail about all the benefits you will gain by rebounding, and if you have any knee or back injuries, don’t stop reading, there is hope for you too.
So what exactly is rebounding?
It is an aerobic exercise performed on a mini-trampoline. It can be as simple as jumping for 15-20 minutes while watching your favorite show or listening to music, or doing more complicated choreography by following an online workout or even joining a live class. As I have been rebounding regularly for the past few months, I’m at a point where I can do the moves on my own, but it’s best to start with online instruction.
Is it like jumping on a large ‘kids’ trampoline?
It’s not. Instead of bouncing up or bouncing high, you are bouncing down and low. Your knees are soft with your weight driving down through your heels. Your upper body maintains a squat like posture while your heels push down into the trampoline and your core pulls your knees up towards your chest. This method is the best way to reap the health benefits from rebounding.
Why do I love it so much?
Any exercise is useless if not done on a regular basis. Bouncing is so much fun, you will look forward to working out.
So many health benefits
In addition to being an amazing cardiovascular workout, increasing your fitness level and the oxygen flow in the body, it is amazing as a detoxing method. Rebounding stimulates the lymphatic system (a network of organs and vessels needed to recycle body fluid, or lymph) to flush out toxins and waste from the body. Because the lymph system is not self-sustaining it relies on us to drain and circulate lymph fluid throughout the body. Rebounding challenges you tolift away and drive your feet back to the trampoline in a downward motion in a variety of positions. This action gives the lymphatic system the push it needs to circulate properly.
This release of toxins from the body also helps boost our immunity. Rebounding has also been found to improve digestion and relieve constipation.
I don’t want to make this post too long, so I purposely won’t be going into the details of all the health benefits, but I just want to give you an idea and you can check the resources I’ve listed below if you would like to know more.
A full body workout
According to a study conduct by NASA in 1980, rebounding increases heart-rate and oxygen consumption more than the activity of running. However, because of it’s low-impact nature, you don’t get as tired, and without the impact and pressure on your ankles and knees.
Rebounding is also great for building strength. Bouncing works your lower body of course but also your abs as you need to squeeze the core when you jump. You can also do moves such as planks and push-ups using it, and lifting up the trampoline on its side and using it as a ballet barre. When doing moves such as dead-lifts on the trampoline, you work on your balance as well as engage your abs, to prevent yourself from sinking down, compared to doing the same move on the floor.
I’ve seen a difference in my abs, and I haven’t done anything different other than incorporating rebounding into my workout routine.
Gentle on the joints
Unlike most forms of weight-bearing exercises, rebounding is low impact, and therefore gentler on the joints, cartilage and vertebrae. Because a trampoline is made using springs or bungee pads, it is able to absorb most of the body’s impact with every bounce. When bouncing, the pressure is more distributed throughout the body, whereas with running or walking, the pressure is mainly on the ankles. I love how my body gets the cardiovascular challenge when I bounce, both my heart and muscles work hard, however without strain on the joints because the trampoline is absorbing the impact of my landing. An added bonus is that it also feels easier.
All you need to see the health benefits of rebounding is 20 minutes 3 times a week. Since the focus is mainly on your lower body, it’s beneficial to incorporate an upper body workout a couple times weekly. I usually do 10minutes upper body 2 to 3 times a week.
Helps with Weight-Loss
Mainly because of all the benefits listed here. When you can find a workout that can be low-impact, fun, calorie-burning and detoxifying, weight-loss becomes easier with the right diet plan.
No need to leave the house
In the time of a worldwide pandemic, home workouts have become the norm. So it’s nice to have the option of jumping in addition to doing workout videos. And if you like going on walks or running outdoors, then it’s an ideal option for when the weather is too hot (Kuwait in the summer!) or too cold or raining. When the weather is pleasant, the trampoline is small enough to take outside to your garden and patio and do your workout outdoors.
There are a range of prices for rebounders, from $50 to $800. However the lower-range trampolines are cheaper than most 1 month gym memberships, while the more expensive bungy-cord type trampolines are definitely cheaper than a treadmill or elliptical machine.
Your kids will use it too
I love how my youngest Noura (she’s 9) jumps on it while watching TV. And if her cousins or friends come over they all want to jump also.
Keeps you young!
It feels like play which is so important as we grow older. Play boosts energy and vitality and relieves stress. Less stress means better sleep, improved immunity and resistance to disease.
What rebounder do I recommend?
Honestly, the best answer to this question is “what is the best quality trampoline you can afford?”
I spent months enjoying working out on a relatively cheap spring-based trampoline. When I realized I’m committed to this new workout method, and that I won’t be spending money on any new gym membership soon, I invested in a JumpSport trampoline with bungee cords. The next level up from the JumpSport, is the Bellicon, which is customizable and highly recommended if you have any injuries.
The best online workouts
There are not enough free high quality trampoline workouts on YouTube as I write this post. I’ve therefore joined two online apps that provide both trampoline and full body workouts. I love them both. If you are going to go with one, I would recommend Body by Simone as it’s cheaper, and offers a variety of workouts for all levels. If you’ve been using BBS for some time and would like to change it up, then TheNess is amazing and offers more challenging bounce workouts. I love how TheNess offers a free 20minute consultations for all new members.
Furthermore, if you buy your trampoline from Bellicon you get access to their online workout videos.
I’m so excited to share this new workout option with you. I hope you get to try it, and reap the benefits of this awesome exercise. I’m always eager to hear your thoughts and answer your questions, so feel free to share them in the comments below.