Who knew you could burn calories and have fun while bouncing on a trampoline? But that is just what happens when you take a trampoline fitness class—also known as urban rebounding. These smaller, circular mini trampolines have found a real following at gyms by those who are looking for something different to do. And in case you think there is no way jumping on a trampoline could give you any type of cardio workout, think again. (photo credit)
The first thing you need to know if you try a rebounding or trampoline class is that the way you jump is not what you think. Instead of jumping for height, you want to focus on keeping your head at the same level, but bringing your knees up and bouncing to the beat of the music. It is a weird feeling when you first start out because it is not how you would normally jump on a trampoline, but this is why it is a lot more challenging than it appears. Do not get discouraged if you cannot master jumping like this right away. It takes a few tries to master it so do not give up if frustration gets the better of you.
For the hour-long class, expect to do all sorts of fun and heart-pumping exercises. You can do tuck jumps, jump squats, jumping jacks, high-knee runs, alternating knees and kicks—you name it. Many classes choreograph a few moves together to make it easy to follow and the level of difficulty will increase. For example, you can start with jumping forward and back four times and then doing two jumping jacks. A few of those and then you may change the last jumping jack to a flying one where your feet leave the trampoline as your arms go overhead.
During these classes, expect to come off the trampoline at times. You can treat it like a step and go back and forth over the trampoline or place one foot on top and the other on the floor and do leg lifts. Place your hands on the edge of the rebounder and you can do push-ups, mountain climbers or tricep dips. Endless possibilities exist. (photo credit)
If you do decide to try a trampoline fitness class, here are a few tips to help you out so you do not feel lost or get frustrated:
Focus on your lower half. You should bring your knees up as if you are jumping over a puddle of water. They should not come all the way up to your chest, but enough to get you over.
Emphasize your landing. Imagine there are balloons underneath the trampoline and you are trying to pop them. You want to land hard with exertion coming from your lower body.
Do not scrunch your toes. First-timers usually experience some pain in the arch of their feet when they bounce. This is mostly because they are curling their toes under fearing they will fall off. Try to avoid doing this.
Ignore the music at first. The music will seem like it is very fast and you cannot keep up with it. That is fine. Keep your focus on mastering the jumping part even if that means not bouncing on the beat. It will all fall into place once you get more comfortable with moving this way.
Stay centered. Always bounce in the middle of the rebounder. You will be moving forward and back and/or side to side, but your body should always remain centered.
Tie your shoes. Experienced bouncers have fallen due to shoelaces that are not tied or came undone and got stuck in the springs of the trampoline. This is very dangerous. Be sure your laces are completely and tightly tied before you begin.
Wear a good bra. Let’s face it ladies, you are on a trampoline bouncing for a long time. Your two pals in the front are going to be bouncing along with you. It is okay to walk out with sore muscles, but you definitely do not want black eyes.
If the opportunity presents itself, try a trampoline or rebounding class. You will no doubt have enormous fun while trying to jump to the music while getting your heart rate up. Not only will you leave the class with sweat dripping off of your body, but with a big smile on your face from having so much fun!