Rebounding is surprisingly an effective way to improve your health and overall wellbeing. Benefits are many, and include improvements in muscle mass, endurance, the digestive system, bone density, the lymphatic system, nervous system, metabolism, circulatory system, balance, cholesterol, and even vision. It is all about how a rebounder allows you to use gravity to your advantage.
Intuitively, one would think that using a mini trampoline (a rebounder) would be comparable to aerobic activities such as jogging or cycling. Rebounding is a great form of aerobic exercise, and does not have the bone-jarring impacts associated with running and jogging. Plus, it's fun! However, unlike other activities, the g-forces from rebounding exercises every single cell in your body. When you reach the bottom of your bounce, you are subjected to about 1.5g (50% increase in the force of gravity). At the top of your bounce you are weightless. This forces your body at the cellular level to strengthen itself because of the constant cycle of increased/decreased stress placed uniformly across your body.
The effect caused from rebounding also stimulates the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is responsible for carrying nutrients to all your cells and carrying away the waste products. For this system to work effectively, it must be stimulated through movement and exercise. Without this stimulation, your cells become laden with waste products and without the nutrients they need. By rebounding, the lymphatic system is stimulated to increase flow by up to 30 times the normal rate, rapidly getting your cells the nutrients they need. The washing away of waste products brought on through the lymph system through rebounding is sometimes called detoxification.
Effects on the nervous system are another advantage of rebounding. Not only do you get into the "zone", providing great relaxation, but the act of rebounding stabilizes your nervous system and helps maintain equilibrium. Using a rebounder is a great way to "de-stress", and is thought of as a way to improve overall nervous system wellness.
For those interested in building muscle and burning calories, rebounding is effective for many reasons. Not the least of which is that rebounding is FUN. It can be very difficult to climb up on that exercise bike or treadmill day after day, but most users of mini trampolines look forward to using their rebounder. While rebounding you can jog, jump, twist, etc. without wearing yourself out like with other exercises.
A NASA study looked at the advantages of rebounding compared to other exercises. Their interest was in strengthening astronauts after returning from lengthy missions in space. Rebounding on a mini trampoline was compared to jogging on a treadmill, and they found that rebounding is 68% more efficient. They also found that it is safer to rebound rather than to jog because in jogging the majority of impact stress is on the ankles and knees. Rebounding softens the impact and better distributes g-forces throughout the body.
Again, because rebounding is fun, you are much more likely to use your rebounder for years and years. Because of this, when selecting a mini trampoline, be sure to find one of good quality such as a Needak Rebounders that will stand the test of time. While there are several alternatives, a piece of exercise equipment that you know will be used for years should be made of high quality components. Most important attributes of a quality rebounder include: steel frame for strength and stability, non-exposed cleats, a spring cover, tapered coil springs, and high quality mat material. Books and DVDs can be very helpful in getting the most from your mini trampoline and are many times included with a rebounder.