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How to Do Mini-Trampoline Exercises

By Lisa M. Wolfe

Exercise on a mini-trampoline is also known as rebounding. You can jump, run, twist and bounce on the mat of the trampoline for a low-impact, fast-paced cardiovascular workout. You can also perform strength exercises such as squat jumps and one-legged jumps on a mini-trampoline. Rebounders typically measure 3 feet in diameter and approximately 9 inches in height. Use the mini-trampoline at home or at the gym, where you can also find rebounding group classes.

Safety First

Select a mini-trampoline that has protective covers over the springs around the edge of the mat, which is the surface upon which you bounce. Even with this protection, wear supportive athletic shoes to prevent your feet from getting pinched in the springs. Position the mini-trampoline on an even, no-slip surface. Begin with a low-intensity warm-up of approximately five to 10 minutes. Stand on the mat of the trampoline and lightly bounce up and down without lifting your feet off the mat. Swing your arms or keep them still depending on your comfort. Bounce for one or two minutes and then march in place to warm your legs and prepare your joints for the workout. Do step-touches to further warm your hips. First step your right foot to the right and then step your left foot to the right to close the space. Repeat in the opposite direction and then continue back and forth.

Aerobic Exercise

Perform exercises that are full-body movements to elevate your heart rate for 20 to 30 minutes and improve your cardiovascular health. Include movements that keep both feet close to the mini-trampoline such as jumping jacks, twists, basic bounces and side-to-side hops. During the workout, perform the basic bounce with more intensity and lightly raise your feet off the mat. Concentrate on pushing down into the trampoline instead of pulling up to help maintain your balance and control your bounce. Also include exercises that alternate touching the mat with your right and left feet such as jogging, high knees, front kicks and hamstring curls. Increase the pace of your jog and lower your hips to mimic a football run for a burst of speed if a regular jog feels easy. Start with the foot movements and add arm motions to your exercises when you are ready to further elevate your heart rate and burn calories. For example, pump your bent arms front to back during your jog or march, as if jogging outdoors. You can also swing your arms overhead and down to your sides when doing jumping jacks.

Jump Training

Use the mini-trampoline to improve your jumps for sports such as basketball and volleyball, as a workout to burn a higher number of calories or to enhance your endurance beyond the basic, rebounding cardiovascular workout. Stand on the trampoline with your feet hip-distance apart. Bend your knees and lower your hips into a squat and then explode up as you pull your knees to your chest into a tuck jump. Land in the starting position and repeat five to 10 times, depending on your strength. Perform five repetitions until five becomes easy. Then, gradually add one or two more until you reach 10 jumps. Begin with limited height to your jumps and increase the height as your strength and balance improve. Add one-legged jumps for a greater challenge for your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings and hips. For example, stand on the trampoline, lift your right foot off the mat and bend your right knee to position your right foot behind you. Bend your left knee and then quickly jump up. Land on your left foot and repeat five to 10 times. Perform five jumps until five becomes easy and then gradually add more until you reach 10 jumps. Complete the same number of jumps on your right leg.

Daily Rebounding

Since mini-trampoline exercise is an aerobic activity, you can perform it on a daily basis or alternate days with other cardio exercises such as walking, cycling and swimming. Aim for a minimum of 20 minutes to improve your cardiovascular health and gradually increase the duration when 20 minutes feels easy. Try not to rebound for longer than 60 minutes at a time. Follow your rebounding workout with stretches for your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes and calves.

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