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How to Choose the Right Rebounder for You

Updated on October 25, 2013

Choosing the Right Rebounder--What You Need to Know

Rebounder and mini-trampoline manufacturers have documented the benefits of rebounding expounded by NASA and fitness experts for several years now.

NASA has reported that rebounding is "the most efficient and effective exercise yet devised by man" and 68% more efficient than treadmills or other forms of exercise.

"For similar levels of heart rate and oxygen consumption, the magnitude of the biomechanical stimuli is greater with jumping on a rebounder trampoline than with running, a finding that might help identify acceleration parameters needed for the design of remedial procedures to avert deconditioning in persons exposed to weightlessness."
--N.A.S.A., Journal of Applied Physiology 49(5): 881-887

There are numerous rebounding health benefits from reducing stress to losing weight that make this form of exercise appealing to tens of thousands.

This type of aerobic exercise can be performed by people of all ages, weights and physical conditions because of its overall low impact.

Complicating matters for the consumer, however, are the numerous rebounders on the market today in the United States ranging from the $19.99 to $29.99 models you'll find at some department, sporting good, and grocery stores to those that run several hundred dollars all making claims that they're the best. Obviously, they all can't be the best.

Just head on over to the world's largest online auction site eBay and you will see listings for $20 to $900 rebounders at any given time all making the claim that they are the right mini-trampoline for you to be using.

So how do you know which rebounder trampoline is best to buy when there are so many choices out there?

Determining Which Rebounder to Buy

Mat, springs, and more...

From Article By Gregg Birkner

David Hall, creator of the Cellerciser® rebounder who runs the Center for Cellular Health in Manti, Utah, says "commercially available rebounders can often cause nerve damage, knee problems, and lower back pain." That's because the mat found on rebounders sold in department and sporting goods stores among other things is comprised of cheap plastic or canvas, Hall says.

Inexpensive mat material over stretches, the feet pronate and ankles twist causing trauma to the inner ankles, knees, and back.

There are oftentimes safety concerns with inexpensive rebounders. In April 2006, 668,000 "In Motion" rebounders made by Stamina and sold in various retail outlets including WalMart were recalled due to injuries reported by customers.

Most higher-quality rebounders like Needak® , Urban Rebounder, ReboundAIR, and Cellerciser® are manufactured with Permatron®, a weather-resistant, space-age material that does not stretch and holds its shape.

Besides the mat, it is important to note the type of springs being used on the rebounder that you're thinking of purchasing.

Most rebounders use tube springs that place weight on the end of the spring, allowing for little stretch. Eventually, the body will come to an abrupt jar, breaking the spring, damaging the unit or injuring the body. Little tube springs don't allow for smooth deceleration, and stop short.

ReboundAIR, which touts itself as the "best built, most innovative rebounder on the planet." uses long wide belly springs "creating a softer, more resilient bounce."

Bellicon, a Swiss/German company on the rebounder market who calls itself the "Porsche of Rebounders", doesn't make rebounders with steel springs any more. Rather, it uses bungee cords of various strengths depending on the weight of the user on its models that range in the $600 - $900 neighborhood.

Hall, who introduced jumbo tapered barrel-springs technology to the rebounding world in 1993, has fitted his Cellerciser models each with new patent approved tri-flex "triple-tiered springs" which adjust to the weight of the user automatically allowing for a gentle acceleration-deceleration effect as you bounce. And since they avoid the jarring effect, Hall says his triple-tiered springs don't break like typical tube springs can.

Besides the mat and springs, what else should you be on the lookout for when selecting a rebounder?

Rebounder Checklist

Here's a quick checklist of things to do, know and/or ask yourself before buying:

  1. Consult a health professional before beginning a rebounding or any other type of exercise program.
  2. What kind of warranty comes with the rebounder? Be sure to read the fine print on any unit that comes with a "Lifetime" Warranty. Also, when you purchase a used rebounder second-hand on eBay or CraigsList for example, be aware that the warranty on that unit is null and void more often than not as most companies will only honor the warranty for the initial purchaser.
  3. Be sure to know the weight limit for users of the unit as stated in the warranty.
  4. Does the rebounder have a "soft bounce" like Needak and Bellicon, an "easy bounce" like Cellerciser, or a firmer bounce?
  5. Does the rebounder come with a steel frame? All-steel construction is best.
  6. Does the rebounder fold or not? If so, how easy is it to fold apart and fold up again? Some units like ReboundAir's Ultimate (Quadruple-Fold) Rebounder are best unfolded using two people as explained on their website.
  7. What kind of a refund policy, money-back guarantee does the manufacturer offer? Be sure to know this going in to your transaction.
  8. Does the unit come with a program, dvd, brochures to assist you with your rebounding exercise routine?
  9. Know beforehand what exercises can be performed safely on the rebounder that you're thinking of buying before making the purchases. For example, there are some rebounding exercises that are safe on some rebounders which you wouldn't want to try on different rebounder makes. One exercise in particular, The Jamba Run" comes to mind as it should only be done on David Hall's Cellerciser.
  10. Read over the reviews about the product that you're considering on sites other than the manufacturer's website. Check out what users had to say about a particular rebounder by doing research on Google and reading comments on sites like Amazon.com and Epinions.com. With some practice, you should be able to determine the genuine reviews and those that are crafted to solely promote a product. Perform searches on eBay for the rebounder that you're considering and review the feedback comments left for the seller about that unit.
  11. More on Rebounder Reviews. IMPORTANT: Most reviews are written by people on rebounders shortly after their purchase. In reality, this kind of review is of marginal help to future potential buyers. Why? Because even department store brand models and those sold on commercial TV can look good for a week or two. Rather, here's an example of a good review to read: If you're thinking of buying a Needak or a bungee-spring brand rebounder with soft bounces, pay particular attention to a review where somebody explains how easy or difficult it was to get replacement springs when the original set had breakage, and how easy or difficult it was to replace the springs yourself. You don't want to spend $750 on a rebounder only to find out a few months down the road that it is next to impossible to replace the broken springs yourself. Another good review to read is one written by a customer who encountered a problem with their rebounder and explains how the manufacturer handled that situation.
  12. Does the manufacturer provide a toll-free customer support phone number and email address? A good way to determine what level of service your manufacturer will provide is to call them up and ask them whether or not you should get a balance bar with the unit that you're thinking about buying. If the person you're talking with asks you a number of questions to ascertain your rebounding ability and needs rather than quickly answering your question and then pressuring you for a sale, then you've probably found a company that you can be comfortable calling with questions or issues following your purchase.

Conclusion

Remember, there are countless rebounders everywhere on and off of the Internet. However, by putting some time and effort into your research following the guidelines above, it is possible to find the right rebounder for you and reap the many fitness and health rewards from rebounding.

Why Should You Rebound?

Some quotes on rebounding from "Looking Good Feeling Great" by Karol Khun Truman:

"Our society seems to have been trained in the Puritan ethic: you have to work for what you get. And work hard! But exercise is one area where that old truism doesn't necessarily hold true."

"...rebounding is good exercise, and better exercise than most programs because of its simplicity. With only one kind of motion, the rebound unit tones and conditions every single cell of the body at once. Thus rebounding is what you might call a concentrated form of exercise - you actually get more results from less effort."

"Let it be easy. Take advantage of its simplicity and don't waste energy trying to complicate it."

Your Thoughts on Rebounding ...

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      Donna 2 years ago

      i have one of the original "get fit with rebounding" mini trampolines and still have it. I've only had to replace a rubber foot from sitting in hot placed over the years. I love it but it is in Maine now and I am in FL.