How Trampoline Classes Put the Fun Back in Fitness

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Jumping Fitness Harnesses the Fun of Trampoline Workouts

Jumping Fitness
Jumping Fitness

When was the last time you really had fun while working out? If you can't remember, then you're past due for a fitness shake up, and there's no time like the present to look for an exercise routine like trampolining that helps you harness a little childlike joy.

Starting in the early 2000s, full-fledged trampoline parks began popping up around the country, drawing families into their bouncy-floored-padded-walled mazes. As these family fun centers became more popular, adults started remembering just how much fun trampolining could be, while at the same time realizing they didn't want to work out while surrounded by hundreds of screaming kids. As a result, a renewed interest in adult trampoline classes has emerged, similar to the rebounding workouts popularized first in the 1980s. But unlike the trampoline workouts you might remember your mom or grandmom doing in the living room at home,  today's trampoline classes are a whole different animal. 

Jakub Novotny, a master trainer and spokesman for Jumping Fitness, a trampoline-based training system and boutique studio class developed in Europe in 2001, explains, "Classes are set to fast EDM music - think hot, European dance club-style sound - and we use specially developed trampolines that are hexagonal with rubber ropes and mesh surfaces that reduce noise, static, and skid." 

These updates to the traditional trampoline (and the traditional trampoline class) make the classes safer while giving participants more space to move around. And if you're imagining exercises reminiscent of the small knee bends and calf raises you remember your grandma doing on her home trampoline, think again. Today's trampolining classes are tough. Novotny says, "Each class is intense, but fun, combining fast and slow jumps, variations of traditional aerobic steps, dynamic sprints, and power movements, akin to sports performance training." However, the workouts are modifiable for practically any participant because jumping height and speed can be adjusted. 

Aside from the novelty and basic fun factor, there are legitimate benefits to hitting the trampoline for your next workout. For instance, trampoline workouts turn high-impact exercises into lower-impact versions. Novotny points to running as an example, "Jogging on the ground is considered a high-impact exercise, but it's considered low-impact on the trampoline." He goes on to add, "And because your body has to constantly make minute adjustments to the spring-like surface as you land and rebound, jumping helps develop core strength, balance, coordination, and stability." 

While gyms and boutique fitness studios are beginning to offer more trampolining classes, they're still not available in every city. If you don't have access to one near you, consider picking up a personal trampoline and trying your hand at the following four exercises, courtesy of Novotny. 

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Simple Jogging

Trampoline Jogging
Jumping Fitness

Everyone knows how to perform a simple jog, but the exercise offers more variations when using a trampoline. For instance, you can enjoy the low-impact exercise as usual, then once you become more confident, you can try more challenging modifications, such as isolating one side and jogging two to four times on a single leg.

While doing single-leg isolations, engage your core and try to keep your body straight up to prevent yourself from leaning to the side.

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Tip Toe Jumps

Trampoline Tip Toes
Jumping Fitness

Position yourself in the center of the trampoline and, alternating sides, bend your knees and lift each heel away from the mat. Try to keep the balls of your feet in contact with the trampoline at all times - don't move them forward.

This exercise can also be modified to a double jump, simply bouncing two times on each side before alternating. Pump your arms forcefully as you perform each tip toe to make the exercise more challenging and powerful.

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Rebound

Trampoline Rebound
Jumping Fitness

Start in the center of the trampoline with your feet together. Using both feet simultaneously, jump from the front of the trampoline to the back. Always land with your feet in the center of the trampoline (feet together) so you don't shorten the movement and make it easier. Don't forget to use your arms - they should extend out and in  - the same movement as your legs! Think of this almost as doing a frog hop in the air - really draw your knees up and out to the sides every time you jump.

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Squats and High Jumps

Trampoline Squat Jumps
Jumping Fitness

Strengthening your glutes has never been easier. With the added balance challenge and reduced impact of the trampoline, you can do squats for longer, and with added benefit. Also, because a trampoline has a soft mat, you can perform high jumps, landing in a squat position again. This exercise is tough, and your legs will tire quickly, but your butt will get stronger in the process.

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