If you want to channel your inner child, you can't beat a mini trampoline. Mini trampolines are a fun way to get your heart pounding and your muscles working, both of which can help you lose weight, improve your heart health and increase muscle strength and coordination. But like any exercise, too much mini trampolining poses some health risks, so talk to your doctor about an ideal workout schedule.
Mini Trampoline Benefits
Unlike full-sized trampolines, mini trampolines pose little risk of head injury because you're not elevated several feet off of the ground and there's not enough space to do risky tricks such as flips. Trampolines help to strengthen your lower body and can improve balance. They also give you an excellent cardiovascular workout, which can help you shed calories and gain the physique you want.
Jumping can hurt your joints, because it forces your knees, hips and ankles to repeatedly bear your body weight as you land. A trampoline helps to minimize the impact, and some doctors recommend trampoline jumping to people with joint problems. But excessive jumping -- past the point of feeling pain or for longer than recommended by your doctor -- can still affect your joints, particularly if you have chronic joint problems such as osteoarthritis. Repetitive movements can weaken your joints as you grow more tired, which may lead to broken bones if you fall.
Muscles and Bones
Like any exercise, excessive trampolining can strain your muscles. Overuse injuries generally clear up on their own after a few days. But if you decide to get creative and jump on one foot or try to do tricks, you could lose your balance or proportion your weight wrong. This can lead to more serious strains and sprains, which can sideline your workout routine for weeks or even months. While regular exercise can help strengthen your bones and prevent osteoporosis, careless or excessive jumping could lead to a bone fracture if you stumble.
Issues During Pregnancy
Pregnant women need to be particularly cautious while jumping on a mini trampoline, and some doctors advise that pregnant women avoid trampolines altogether. The repeated bouncing can stretch connective tissues and cause joint injuries. When you're pregnant, your balance decreases as your center of gravity changes, and a fall could harm you or your baby.
- Pregnancy.org: Can I Still Bounce on the Trampoline?
- Hospital for Special Surgery: Exercise During Pregnancy
- CBS News: Pediatricians Warn Against Trampoline Use at Home, Citing Injury Risks
- National Institutes of Health Osteoporosis and Related Bone Diseases National Resource Center: Exercise for Your Bone Health
- Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research: Fatigue Effects on Knee Joint Stability During Two Jump Tasks in Women
- Medical Billing and Coding: 9 Strange Things You Can't Do When You're Pregnant
Van Thompson is an attorney and writer. A former martial arts instructor, he holds bachelor's degrees in music and computer science from Westchester University, and a juris doctor from Georgia State University. He is the recipient of numerous writing awards, including a 2009 CALI Legal Writing Award.