We have all seen the advertisements on late night television. A room full of scantily clad young men and women exercising to hip hop music. Each one jumping up and down in synchronized unison with the others on their own tiny little trampoline. The exercise community calls this kind of trampoline a rebounder trampoline, a mini trampoline or just a rebounder for short. At first you might think those television advertisements are just flashy exercise gimmicks to take some of your hard earned cash and of course they are trying to sell you their rebounder trampoline along with some exercise program. But it may surprise you to know that the health and exercise benefits from using a rebounder trampoline are very real and the fun part is there as well.
Ed Russell first invented the mini trampoline in 1938. But no one was interested in it back then so it died out. Then in 1977 Al Carter, an exercise expert and author, brought it back to life and marketed his rebounder trampoline to the world. It became a fad in the 1980s and almost everyone was buying one. Like so many other exercise fads, it grew to a market saturation point in the late 1980s and almost disappeared in the 1990s. But today it is making a comeback, better than ever, often combined with aerobic dance moves, modern pop music and even martial arts and with cardiovascular and aerobic benefits for young and old alike.
So why would you want to buy a rebounder trampoline? There are, after all, dozens of other types of exercise equipment vying for your consideration. Perhaps the biggest advantage derived from exercising on a rebounder trampoline is the low impact on your joints, bones and muscles. Jogging or running, for example, are extremely good aerobic and cardiovascular exercises but they can be brutally damaging to your bones and joints. The repetitive impact of your feet on the ground is, long term, not at all healthy for you. Of course, sports shoe manufacturers have significantly improved the cushion and support in modern athletic footwear. But the damage done to your body from repeated foot impacts is still there. Low impact aerobics was designed specifically to give good exercise without joint and bone damage from foot impact. But for the ultimate in low impact exercise nothing beats a rebounder trampoline.
Of course, the fun factor is great with a rebounder. Remember when you were a kid and you had such great fun jumping up and down on your bed? Back then your parents probably put a stop to that. Now, you can get that same fun rush all over again with a rebounder trampoline. You start with the basic jumping up and down move. Focus more on pushing down against the trampoline than jumping up. Only a couple of inches are enough to start getting a good workout. Before you know it the jumping will start to feel natural and you can start trying other moves. You only have a limited space to work with, less than 40 inches for the average rebounder, but you can still do all kinds of exercises in that space. Jumping side to side, running in place, knee lifts, one leg hops and twisting and kicking can all be part of the fun on a rebounder trampoline. Before you know it you feel your heart pumping, your legs start to feel a little tired and you start to sweat. All are part of healthy, fun aerobic exercise.
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