Working out on a mini trampoline is also called rebounding and the effectiveness of the workout will depend on how you bounce and the amount of energy you use. [Trampoline exercise]
It is possible to get a great cardio and body toning workout on a mini trampoline, and you have the convenience of being able to do it anywhere.
It isn’t as easy as it looks to bounce on a mini trampoline; you need good balance to stay in the middle of the mat.
From this perspective alone, you get a good workout – keeping your balance needs the action of opposing core muscles to maintain an upright position.
It is safest to wear shoes and well-fitting sports shoes are the best for the purpose. Rebounding in bare feet offers no support for the feet and ankles and injury could occur if you land off the mat.
Any exercise is better than no exercise, but if you have a goal of losing weight or increasing your fitness levels, then you need to be sure your workout is achieving this.
Any exercise that increases your heart rate and breathing, and makes you break a sweat, will be improving your cardio strength and burning calories. [Cardio exercises]
This is where there is some debate about the effectiveness of the mini trampoline – is there sufficient intensity to achieve real cardio benefits?
People report that they experience an increase in heart rate on the trampoline, but this could be due to the bouncing effect rather than the exertion. If there’s no sweat, there’s no intensity.
It seems there has been very little research done since the 1980s on the effectiveness of working out on a mini trampoline. These older studies are inconclusive because the actual activity is not named.
It’s possible to bounce away without using much energy or lower body movement; it would seem as though the simple double-foot jump does not provide much cardio effect.
You might think you are getting a great workout, because your heart rate is up, but this could be a psychological effect of the bouncing which feels like you are doing a lot.
The “fun factor” isn’t to be discounted though. If using a mini trampoline is something you enjoy, go for it! Use it as a different workout, to break the monotony of your regular gym sessions; take a class.
For someone who has been sedentary for a while, it is a fun way to get started with minimum impact on the joints.
Some cardio moves on the mini trampoline:
Here are some moves you can do to ensure you are getting the benefit of a true cardio workout and burn some extra calories. Warm up before you get on the trampoline, and start off with some easy two-foot bounces. Then you can incorporate some of these moves into your workout:
- Alternate two-foot bounces with short bursts of jogging using elbow swings.
- Twist at the waist as you bounce, feet together. Twist in the air and face front as you land.
- Jumping jacks with a bounce in between each one. To increase the intensity and difficulty, leave out the bounce between.
- Knee lifts – do a two-foot bounce, lift one knee high in front as you bounce on the other leg and repeat, alternating legs. Repeat without the two-foot bounce in between.