If you think mini trampolines, also known as rebounders, seem like child’s play, you better think again. These tiny launchpads are bound tightly so there isn’t much give, which means not a lot of spring action. They are built for smaller, controlled plyometrics movements. A 20-minute session on one of these will provide a low-impact workout for the joints and heart while boosting a healthy blood flow and improving balance.
This kind of workout is all about functional endurance, both muscular and cardiovascular. There are repetitive, small movements that quickly add up to a full body wake-up. Adding hand weights between one and five pounds can recruit the upper body muscles even more.
Balance and core: This one is pretty obvious, but you do need balance for this exercise. Beginning with basic movements, your balance can dramatically improve in just a few workouts. Rehabilitation experts often utilize a rebounder to help individuals learn body awareness without stifling the motion of the muscles.
Aerobic training: The rebounder provides a steady low-impact aerobic workout for most participants. Instead of recruiting energy from the muscles alone, energy is provided by the rebounding effect of each landing. This creates a low-impact training environment where the focus shifts to functional exercise with a healthy blood flow. In addition, adding those small hand weights as mentioned earlier will improve the results of the workout, making it equivalent to power walking.
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Pelvic floor training: Forget kegels! The up-and-down movement of a jump can open the floodgates for any woman struggling with a weak pelvic floor. (Those kids were worth it, though!) Using the rebounder acts as a therapy session for the muscles that work in conjunction with the bladder. The user can control the speed and height of the jumps as well as go through the motion without lifting his or her feet from the surface. Plus, the user can slowly work their way up to faster, bigger movements.
Easy on joints: A tool often used in physical therapy, the rebounder is kind to the musculoskeletal system. It has just enough “give” to it for reflexology training and just enough “tautness” to help you stay in control. Click here to find more workouts and exercises for people with joint pain.
Detox workout: The majority, if not all, of workouts has a detoxifying side effect, usually through sweat. For this workout, it boosts the lymphatic system to drain the metabolic wastes our body regularly collects. In order for the draining to work, it requires a gravitational pressure, movement and “internal massage of the lymph ducts,” which rebounding provides. (via Well Being Journal)
Rebounding is a great workout for people who want to get moving, but have weak ankles, knees or hips, lower back problems or low aerobic capacity. Talk to your doctor first before implementing this as a type of physical therapy.