I’ve mentioned rebounding quite often, both on my Instagram page and here on my blog, but I haven’t written a full article about why I love it so much. Today, I want to share a quick overview of why I’ve made rebounding a part of my life. From Crohn’s and fitness to well-being and fun, my day wouldn’t be complete without rebounding. This will be the first post in a short series where, after this bird’s-eye view of rebounding benefits, I’ll share how it has helped in managing some of my Crohn’s Disease symptoms and what to consider when purchasing a rebounder.
First things first, what is a rebounder? It’s a mini trampoline…and depending on your age, you might be picturing the 80s fad with women wearing leotards and leggings jumping on trampolines. But, with a variety of high-quality rebounders available on the market today, this trend is starting to emerge again.
Being that I eat, sleep, and breathe fitness and nutrition, I’m constantly searching for the latest trends or learning about various techniques and programs that I hear about or I stumble upon. After moving to New Braunfels about two years ago, I began focusing entirely on home workout programs because the closest gym was 30 minutes away and I was already driving an hour each way to and from work.
I felt comfortable with and loved my bodyweight movements for strength training, but after about a year I grew tired of countless burpees and repetitive circuits. I wanted something more (and different) for my cardio. Walking is great and I did that for many years, but I felt guilty if I went on a walk without my dogs (the whimpers and looks they would give me when I left them at home!) and I didn’t feel I could take them out for a very long period in the Texas heat. Other times it was just too dark and cold for me to get motivated for a walk. So, I began searching for options to add something to my home gym (just the spare bedroom at the time).
I hate running and I hate treadmills…so I did not consider that an option for me. A high quality elliptical machine was too big and cumbersome to put in the spare bedroom and much more expensive than what I wanted to spend. I also didn’t want anything else bulky, like a rowing machine. Finally, I stumbled upon the idea of rebounding and down the rabbit hole I went!
With a rebounder, I could easily pick it up and store it in the closet when company came to visit and I needed to turn the spare bedroom back into a guest room (without having it be full of workout equipment). It was obvious that it was something I could do while watching TV inside the house on a rainy day, but its portability also opened up the option of taking it outside when it was a beautiful day and I wanted to be energized by the fresh air.
The more I started thinking about it, the more it seemed to fit what I was looking for. Then, after I began learning about the other health benefits associated with rebounding, I became obsessed. My decision was made and I went on a hunt to find the best rebounder out there 🙂
What are those health benefits of rebounding? Let me count the ways….
I have a bad foot, courtesy of my time spent ruck marching in the Army, so I can’t run (or even walk for very long) without tremendous pain. Rebounding is low impact and gentle on the joints. There’s no jarring like what you experience when running and having your feet hit the hard pavement. The trampoline absorbs the impact, which reduces your risk for injury, and the rebounding movement that sends you back up on the bounce, works every cell in your body. (Note: I’ll write more about injury and why you should choose a high-quality rebounder in one of my next posts for this series; ultimately, safety and quality is why I chose the Cellercise rebounder.)
High or Low Intensity
With rebounding, YOU control the intensity of the workout. Not having a great day and feeling run down? Do a gentle bounce to get your blood flowing and help invigorate your body. Having a great day and ready for an intense workout? Jump hard and fast, you’ll be out of breath in no time! From the very beginner (you can even just sit on the rebounder and gently bounce to get your blood flowing) to the very advanced (jump, kick, punch, flex), you can adapt your daily workout on a rebounder to match your needs.
Dynamic Stretching & Warm Up
Most people are familiar with static stretching…holding one position for a period of time to increase your flexibility. But, dynamic stretching is movement based; your muscle is taken through a range of motion, like during a kick. The main benefit of dynamic stretching is that it warms up your muscles and prepares them for exercise. This helps prevent injury that might occur from statically stretching a “cold” muscle and makes it a great way to warm up for your full workout.
Energizing the Body, Lymphatic System, and Immune System
In the most simple terms, the lymphatic system is the body’s way of removing toxins and waste; initiating immune responses; and distributing nutrients and fluid throughout.
The lungcancer.net website gives an easy-to-understand description that, “lymph vessels act as a filtration system [for the body], separating pathogens while the lymph nodes activate antibodies in the bloodstream. Typically, swollen lymph nodes indicate active production of antibodies to fight infection. In addition to fighting pathogens, the lymphatic system is also responsible for maintaining a healthy fluid balance, draining and filtering up to two liters of fluid daily that would otherwise continue to collect in tissue throughout the body.”
However, there is no dedicated pump for the lymphatic system in the way that the heart pumps blood for the cardiovascular system. Lymph only moves in one direction (through skeletal muscle contractions that push it along), up toward the neck where the filtered fluid can be returned to blood circulation through access points on two subclavian veins.
This is where rebounding comes in!
Exercise, especially jumping on a trampoline, aids the body by manually increasing the flow of the lymphatic system, which detoxifies the body and boosts the immune system. Every cell is worked on a rebounder through the acceleration and deceleration that occurs from jumping and rapidly changing the direction of force in the body, up and down.
Jump to get rid of the toxins, move your lymphatic system, boost your immune system, and increase your energy!
Fore more about the lymphatic system:
Finally, it’s fun. I think the biggest benefit of the rebounder is that it makes fitness fun, which makes us more likely to do it and stick with it. Even on days when I’m not feeling motivated for my workout, it’s easy to tell myself to just go ahead and do a gentle jump for 5 minutes on the rebounder. When I do that, I typically get energized from the blood flow and lymphatic system activation that I often then feel motivated to either jump longer and harder or knock out a full workout. Even if I stop at just the five minutes, I’m still getting the benefits of moving the lymphatic system and generally feel better afterward.
Since we’re on the topic of fun…here’s a fun fact:
Trampolining made its Olympic debut at the 2000 Games in Sydney.
So what are you waiting for, start rebounding today! In my next couple of posts I will share additional benefits of rebounding for the digestive system and how I use it at times to help in the management of some of my Crohn’s symptoms. Finally, I’ll break down the pros and cons of various rebounders on the market and explain why I made the decision to purchase the Cellercise rebounder by Dave Hall!
Do you rebound? Share your experiences in the comments!