Why a Trampoline Makes for the Perfect At-Home Workout This Winter
Like many, we subscribe to the school of thought that Goldie Hawn can do no wrong. The legendary 76-year-old actor knows how to live life to the fullest while staying vital and healthy. At the beginning of the global pandemic, when stay-at-home orders first went into effect, Hawn channeled her feel-good attitude and passion for wellness into transcendent Instagram content, showcasing the fruits of dancing with abandon, mind-cleansing meditations, and one of her favorite forms of exercising: rebounding on a trampoline. “Dance, jump, and twirl like nobody’s watching!” wrote Hawn in the caption of one of her rebounding videos.
Bridging the gap between recreation and exercise, Hawn has not only inspired her followers to get moving, but helped emphasize that a trampoline workout is perfectly suited to life indoors. Case in point: When mass social distancing began in Japan, sales of mini trampolines began rising rapidly as a solution for staying active within the confines of the home. And it’s far from a stand-in for other types of exercise—it’s a robust alternative; one that astronauts have used to help regain bone density and muscle mass after returning from space. Further proof of its effectiveness was a NASA study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology that found rebounding is 68% more efficient than jogging.
What is a rebounding workout?
Rebounding is a cardiovascular exercise typically performed on a mini trampoline. “Rebounders are usually smaller and firmer, which allows for a better bounce when compared to a larger trampoline you might see outdoors,” explains Dong, who insists that even though a trampoline is low impact, it’s not lacking in intensity. “It covers every single part of your body, and you can work up a massive sweat in just 30 minutes,” says Dong. “It’s efficient, but mainly it’s fun.”
What are the full-body rebounding benefits?
Rebounding offers a multitude of benefits: On the surface, it works to keep the entire body, particularly the core, legs, glutes, and back muscles, toned and strong. “Although it does wonders for weight loss, the benefits you can’t see are the most valuable,” says Dong. Rebounding motions not only stimulate the lymphatic system, which helps flush out toxins and fight disease, but improve balance and coordination. “It enhances motor skills and provides a mental release, and can help relieve symptoms of anxiety,” she says.
Why is it easier on the joints?
According to Dong, the soft mat and cords of a mini trampoline allow it to have “give” so that acceleration and deceleration are essentially absorbed, thus eliminating up to 80% of the shock of landing on a jump. “Moving on hard surfaces like roads and sidewalks don’t have a lot of give, so they have higher impact on the joints,” explains Dong. “Low impact is great because it protects your joints without sacrificing the work for your muscles.” Because of this, you can do it at any age!
Why is rebounding so well-suited to at-home fitness?
“Getting a proper sweat is hard to come by with most exercises that can be done in a small spaces,” explains Dong. “You can do an entire rebounding session without getting off your trampoline, so as long as you can find a space to place the trampoline, you are golden.” A mini trampoline is small, and many models fold up or have collapsible legs, making them easy to store. It’s also not as big of an investment as a larger, more expensive piece of cardio equipment. “The resounding trend is that home workouts are here to stay,” she continues. “You’re going to continue to see people either supplementing their in-person workouts with sessions at home when it’s time efficient or continuing to outfit their spaces for a complete home gym experience.”
What’s the best way to start rebounding, particularly if you’re spending more time at home?
If you are new to rebounding, Dong recommends finding a basics class video or online trainer that can give you tips on form. The Ness is offering a free seven-day trial as well as a monthly subscription, which includes a complimentary 20-minute online consultation, for its virtual bounce and sculpt classes. If you feel comfortable and have been doing it on your own time, you can also freestyle: Throw on a playlist that motivates you and gradually gets faster. “When you challenge yourself to move to the beat of the music, you’ll naturally push yourself more over the course of the playlist,” she explains.
What is the best workout wear for rebounding?
“The trampoline is low impact because it’s bouncy so you want to make sure you’re comfortable,” says Dong, who suggests wearing sweat-wicking clothes, supportive sneakers (mid-range running shoes should do the trick), and a good, supportive sports bra—especially for those with larger breasts.
What are the best practices for trampoline workout safety?
“Rebounding isn’t your typical exercise,” cautions Dong. “It’s not like running where you know how to walk and therefore can figure out how to run or know how to ride a bike and can easily jump into a cycling class. When in your life are you practicing and preparing yourself to jump on a trampoline?” According to the pro, the most important thing to do is go through the basics—most platforms have videos for beginners—and make sure you learn the form no matter your fitness level. “There is definitely a learning curve so be patient with yourself,” she says. “Progress will come and it will be so worth it.”
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