This post and video are long overdue (and just long in general). I have been blabbering on about how much I love my little trampoline for months now so here we go!
Short backstory: I broke my hip in 2018 at the age of 38 (not good). I had my first bone scan and it showed I had osteopenia (pre-osteoporosis). Also not good. I researched methods for increasing bone density and came up with 2 forms of exercise I wanted to incorporate into my routine:
- Walking while wearing a weighted vest. Making the skeleton carry extra weight signals the bones to toughen up so to speak.
- Jumping on a mini trampoline. Bouncing on a mini trampoline AKA rebounding, gives you the impact your bones need to grow whilst still being a fairly low impact exercise.
I bought a mini trampoline (a JumpSport brand) either right before or right after I had the screws removed from my hip (December 2020). Either way, I wasn’t really able to use the trampoline and it just sat in the basement for a year because I didn’t know how to properly use it.
Eventually I figured out the best, most effective, most efficient way to jump and in this post I’m sharing all the details. I started regularly using my trampoline in (I think) January, 2022. I have now been jumping regularly for 7 months and I jump 10-30 minutes most days (usually just 15-20 minutes).
Here are the things I love about bouncing:
- The main reason I bounce is to build my bones. I haven’t had another bone scan but I’m due for one this fall and all I fully expect to see an improvement in my bone density. Rebounding is also fantastic for building muscular strength, improving cardiovascular health and weight loss.
- Jumping has tightened my core like crazy. After only one month of jumping for 10 minutes a day I noticed my core was so much tighter and firmer which is something I have never gotten from doing abdominal exercises.
- 10-20 minutes a day is SUPER effective. No other exercise can deliver this kind of results with such a small time commitment.
- Results come FAST. After just one month I could see and feel noticeable changes.
- Firms the thighs. This was an unexpected but welcome change. In only a month I noticed my thighs had a new firmness that has never been there even though I do strength training regularly and am overall very active. They weren’t even this firm when I could run 26 miles.
- Bladder and pelvic floor got stronger. Yep! When I first started jumping I was surprised how weak my pelvic floor was. Within a month I could tell I had built up strength.
- Firms and tightens skin on the entire body. You see a theme here. In addition to my thighs and core getting more firm, I noticed my whole body started to feel tighter, including my skin.
- No more puffy face!!! This might be the best side effect. I always wake up with super puffy eyes no matter how much I sleep, how much water I drink and how healthy I eat. 10 minutes of jumping makes the puffy go away!
- Incredible mood booster! Spend a few minutes bouncing and it will totally lift your mood.
- It can be done year round and indoors. I love this aspect! As a runner I would always get stressed when it rained or snowed or when the air quality was bad or there were wildfires burning and I couldn’t run outside. I love that I can get on my trampoline any time of day no matter what the weather is like outside.
- You only need 4 square feet of space and a relatively inexpensive piece of equipment.
- It’s so fun! It doesn’t feel like “exercise” even though it burns a ton of calories. This is seriously the best part because what I’m saying here is that jumping delivers amazing results in a short amount of time and it doesn’t ever feel HARD. It just feels fun which means I don’t ever dread my trampoline time and in fact I look forward to it every day.
My best tips for getting started:
- Any trampoline is good to get started. Just be aware that cheap trampolines might break or stretch out but just use what you have! Once you know you love rebounding and are ready to invest a few hundred dollars the best brands are JumpSport, Cellercise and Bellicon. Check facebook marketplace for used trampolines. I now have a Cellerciser and a JumpSport and I like both. I have a handlebar on the Cellerciser but not the JumpSport. It’s nice to have but not a necessity for me and the way I jump.
- START SLOW. Bouncing is really fun and it doesn’t feel hard so it’s really easy to overdo it! I did this and then I would have to take several days off to recover. You have to remember that bouncing is working the body on a cellular level and it’s strengthening bones and connective tissue. So ease into it, otherwise you can get injured. Start with jumping for just 1-3 minutes and increase every few days as you feel ready.
- Take rest days. Just like easing in, it’s important to take rest days. I find my body likes to bounce 3 days in a row and then take a day off. Some people like to bounce every day so it’s a matter of personal preference and health history.
- Wear loose fitting clothes. You want your skin and muscles to be able to wiggle and jiggle. This is very unscientific (!) but hear me out. As you bounce, every cell in your body gets compressed and then it expands, about 60 times every minute. This flushes the cells and lymphatic system. By letting the skin, muscles and other tissues bounce and jiggle they are getting the maximum flush! And loose clothes are just more comfortable.
- Put some Kleenex in your pockets. When I first started out my nose would run like crazy when I bounced. It no longer runs which I take as a good sign. Apparently I’ve strengthened my sinuses.
- For hair I like to put my hair in a low ponytail and then braid the rest so that my hair doesn’t stick to my back or get all ratted.
- Feeling like you need to go to the bathroom is normal (and it gets better)! I suspect everyone feels this way when they start jumping but nobody talks about it. But yeah, in the beginning you might feel like you need to go to the bathroom even if you just went. It’s fine. Just take a break, use the bathroom and then get back to jumping. Over time the pelvic floor muscles strengthen and you will be able to go 30+ minutes without feeling like you need to “go”. If this is a particular area of concern for you please be sure to start slowly with just a few minutes a day and do not overdo it!
- Be sure to include yoga or stretching as part of a well balanced fitness program. As much as I love bouncing I don’t think it replaces all other forms of movement. I think it’s still important to include walking, strength training and stretching.
- Consistency is the most important part. That’s why I think having a 10 minute routine is the key to success. We all have 10 minutes and it’s not such a hard workout that you will be exhausted. I actually bought a second trampoline so that I could have one at work on days I don’t have a chance to jump before work.
And last, as promised, here is a video of the 10 minute routine I do! I came up with these exercises by watching YouTube videos of Dave Hall, the founder of Cellercise. He is famous for a 10 minute workout he developed in the 1980’s! I really hope you will play some music and follow along with the video and not listen to me talk, haha!
In this video I am jumping on my JumpSport fitness trampoline. I believe it is the 350 model and I remember is cost about $350. It is a bungee style trampoline and on the model I have there are 3 different tension settings. When I first started I used the softest setting but now that I am stronger I have it on the highest tension setting so that I get the most impact and the least amount of bounce. This is a fantastic feature in my opinion.
10 minute daily rebounding routine
- Health bounce 2-3 minutes
- Run in place as fast as possible (or however fast you want) 1 minute
- Front kicks 1 minute
- Side kicks 1 minute
- Back kicks 1 minute
- “Moguls” jumping side to side keeping knees bent 1 minute
- “Jamba Run” feet wide shifting weight side to side, running fast 1 minute
- Health bounce another 1-2 minutes
The end. But usually I’m having fun and want to keep going at that point.
20 minute workout will be coming soon. 🙂
Bye for now!