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Exercise on a trampoline

The trampoline is a piece of sports equipment for jumping support. Trampolines are used in trampoline gymnastics (also known as "trampoline jumping") and in medicine for the trampoline body coordination test .


A precursor to trampoline jumping was hopping on a mattress. Trampoline gymnastics began in the circus, where the top artists' safety net had properties similar to trampolines. At the end of their performance, the gymnasts dropped into the net and performed some somersaults from the net . So the idea came up to develop this into an independent number and manufactured special devices for this purpose. In the mid-1930s, American top artist George Nissen, with the help of his colleague, gymnastics trainer Larry Griswold, built the best jumping equipment of his time. The two had met in 1931 at the University of Iowa . They later founded the Griswold-Nissen & Trampoline Tumbling Company . Since Grisworld saw no future in his company, he sold his shares and devoted himself to his entertainment career. Nissen, on the other hand, continued to manufacture the trampolines professionally and eventually became known worldwide. The “Nissen Cup” event still bears his name today. In the United States , trampoline gymnastics experienced the most rapid development.

In 1951, Albrecht Hurtmanns built his first “throwing machine” in Süchteln in Germany . A frame made of iron pipes, the cloth sewn from roller shutter belts and stretched with bicycle tubes, served as a jumping device in his association ASV Süchteln . Heinz Braecklen and employees at the young sports university in Leipzig also developed a trampoline as a training aid for water divers in 1953 . In 1955, Alfred Gockel from Altenessen first constructed a first, unstable model made of wood.

Finally, the already professional American devices were used in 1958 for the German Gymnastics Festival in Munich a . a. presented by George Nissen. But initially the first applications of the young discipline for membership in the International Gymnastics Federation, FIG at its congresses in 1959 and 1961, were rejected. The first trampoline nations met in 1964 on the initiative of the German Gymnastics Federation in Frankfurt am Main . This became the founding assembly of the International Trampoline Association FIT

In the same year the first world title fights took place in London . In 1996 there was the XIX. World Championships in Vancouver , in 1998 they took place in Sydney , in 1999 there are trampoline world championships in Africa for the first time in Sun City , South Africa.

On September 1, 1997, the International Olympic Committee in Lausanne , Switzerland , finally decided to include the individual trampoline competitions in the official program of the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney .

Structure and types

Jumping mat attachment with metal springs on triangular ring and belt strap

The basic structure is the same for almost all trampolines: an elastic jumping sheet (mostly made of synthetic fibers such as polypropylene or polyamide ) is clamped in a metal frame by means of numerous springs (more rarely also by means of elastic ropes) made of metal . The metal frame is usually elevated to provide the space under the jumping surface that is necessary for jumping; However, there are also trampolines built into the ground where the trampoline frame is attached over a correspondingly deep pit. There are also increasing numbers of trampolines that work without springs. Here the jumping sheet is connected to a frame below it via rods made of fiberglass . Springless trampolines are considered particularly safe.

Inflatable trampoline

Mother and child with an inflatable trampoline

Inflatable trampolines are the simplest and cheapest category of trampolines. They are increasingly used in physical education in the elementary sector (in kindergartens and day-care centers, mother / father-child gymnastics departments). They have an inflatable body made of heavy-duty vinyl plastic and therefore no hard, injurious metal struts and frames like the other types of trampoline. The jumping sheet is braided with two cords so that no steel springs are necessary. After use, the air is deflated, like a rubber dinghy, and the trampoline can be stored to save space. As a rule, they are designed for smaller children and their resilience is therefore significantly lower than with fixed trampolines.

Fitness or exercise trampoline

Fitness trampolines, also known as gymnastics trampolines, are circular with a horizontal jumping surface that cannot be adjusted in height. The usual diameters are between 90 and 130 cm, the heights are between 20 and 40 cm. Due to the compact dimensions and the low jumping effect, fitness trampolines are only suitable for jumping while standing; acrobatic exercises such as somersaults are practically impossible with them. They are primarily used as a training device for health, fitness and weight loss. Fitness exercises with the trampoline are also known as rebounding .

This is considered to be very gentle on the joints and is therefore an ideal sport for all people who have problems with their joints. Especially when jumping and landing on the trampoline, there is no high load because the spring systems give way. The rebounding is also effective in osteoarthritis patients and varicose veins can be prevented.

Fitness trampolines are often simply called "mini trampolines"; However, this term also stands for the "Minitramps" described below, which have a fundamentally different structure and are also used differently.

Garden trampolines

A garden trampoline with a safety net

Garden trampolines are large trampolines for year-round outdoor use. These trampolines are almost always circular with diameters between 240 and 490 cm, the height of the jumping surface usually varies between 80 and 100 cm. Mostly they are trampolines with springs. But there are also springless garden trampolines.

As an alternative to elevation, they can also be installed just above the ground over a sufficiently wide and deep pit; there are also garden trampolines specially made for this design.

Garden trampolines are often offered with a circumferential vertical safety net, which is intended to prevent the jumpers from falling off the trampoline, but on the other hand can also lead to more violent jumping and thus an increased risk of accidents.

Various manufacturers recommend dismantling year-round trampolines in autumn in order to protect the material from extreme temperatures and weather conditions. But there are also springless trampolines that are suitable as all-weather trampolines and that can be left standing all year round.

Mini trampoline

A mini trampoline, often also called a “mini trampoline”, has a rectangular (often square) or rarely a round metal frame with a rather small jumping surface compared to the overall size. As a rule, it is independently height-adjustable on two sides and can therefore also be set up at an angle.

Minitramps are seldom used as individual sports equipment, but are primarily used in apparatus gymnastics to increase jumping strength either to cross equipment or to learn more difficult jumps such as somersaults. Accordingly, they are used almost only in sports facilities and not in private households.

The term mini trampoline is also used for the fitness trampolines described above.

Open-end minitramp

An open-end minitramp is a minitramp with an open frame at the top and bottom. This device is characterized by an extraordinary throwing performance, which is necessary for performing difficult jumps.

Double mini trampoline

The double mini tramp is probably the least known of the three forms, as it is practically only used for trampoline gymnastics . The device offers the jumper a jumping sheet that is about three times the length of the width and is attached to three metal brackets by means of steel springs. The entry surface facing the jumper is slightly inclined in order to be able to convert the approach speed better in height, while the rear part is flat. The jumper takes a run-up and makes a jump onto the inclined front section, from there to the flat rear section and further onto the mat floor behind the device. In an official competition you have to touch the jumping mat at least twice to a maximum of three times in order to land with your feet on the mat floor. Since the devices are practically only used in sport , they are designed for high throwing performance and are not recommended for inexperienced people without qualified instruction.

Competition trampoline

Trampoline line-up and jury for a trampoline competition

The large trampoline, also called Batude , is the classic trampoline. It is a jumping device that is available with different performance features depending on the purpose. The first devices still had closed jumping sheets that were hung on rubber ropes. Today's high-performance devices have a network of four to six millimeter wide nylon strips that are suspended from up to 118 steel springs. The jumping surface is rectangular and twice as long as it is wide; their size varies between approximately 180 by 360 and 215 by 430 cm. Since the air permeability of a closed jumping sheet is low and the movements are strongly dampened, you can hardly jump more than a simple somersault with such sheets. In contrast to this, this effect is not so strong with modern net-like jumping beds; these allow the jumper to reach very great heights without great effort.

Floor trampoline-inground trampoline

An in-ground trampoline, also known as an in-ground trampoline, is a trampoline that is completely embedded in the ground, creating a flat surface. This type of trampoline is available in a round or square design and is often buried in the ground (preferably on the lawn) without a safety net. Compared to a garden trampoline, the ground trampoline (inground trampoline) is permanently buried in a fixed place in the garden and can therefore not be flexibly set up in another place.

The place where the trampoline is buried should be carefully considered, as digging a pit and then building the floor trampoline is time-consuming.

The ground trampoline is covered with a tarpaulin for winter storage and protection.

Trampoline hall

House of Air trampoline hall in San Francisco

Trampoline halls are indoor recreational facilities that are equipped with trampolines. The trampolines go from one wall to the other. This prevents the jumper from falling off the trampolines and seriously injuring himself. Nevertheless, there is an increased risk of injury, especially for inexperienced jumpers in trampoline halls. Due to the mostly exuberant mood and driven by other, more experienced jumpers, one's own ability is quickly overestimated. Anyone who carelessly tries somersaults and other tricks is exposed to an increased risk of neck injuries and joint fractures .

Trampoline halls gained popularity in the USA from 1950. Because of a high accident rate , the recreational facilities, which were still simpler at the time, came under fire and public interest quickly fell again in the early 1960s. After the concept was rediscovered and further developed, trampoline halls in the USA have been experiencing a boom again since 2004. After openings in the Netherlands and Great Britain, the first German trampoline hall opened in Dortmund in 2014 . Since then, others have opened in Hamburg , Duisburg , Gelsenkirchen , Schwäbisch Hall , Essen, Munich, Quickborn, Ulm, Dietzenbach, Stuttgart and several in Berlin. Over 15 new trampoline halls are currently being planned or under construction.

Strip width of the jumping beds

In schools and in club work with children, a cloth with 13 mm strips is usually used, which represents a good compromise between throwing performance and training effect for muscle building.

Due to their high throwing power, jumping sheets with narrower strips are only recommended for well trained athletes, as the jumps otherwise put too much strain on the joints. Jumps up to a height of about 9 meters are possible, which of course also represents a considerable risk of falling.

In rehabilitation and disabled sports jumping sheets made of 45 mm wide nylon strips are often used, as they are very robust and are very suitable for building up the supporting muscles. For this reason, softer, sprung trampolines are used in therapy.

Other types of trampolines

Trampoline on a rubber raft on Lake Zurich in Zollikon

Another form is the combination of bungee and trampoline, the bungee trampoline . The jumping person is connected to the side of the trampoline with elastic ropes. This makes it possible to try out forward and backward salti with little injury and, by pulling the elastic rope, jump significantly higher while at the same time being gentle on the joints.

There are also trampolines that work without elastic suspension (such as springs / rubber ropes). In this type of springless trampoline, the jumping sheet is connected to a frame under the jumping sheet using fiberglass rods. Springless trampolines are considered particularly safe. The jumper cannot injure himself on the frame or springs here.

Risk of injury

A youngster at the highest point of a jump on a garden trampoline without a safety net

Injuries when jumping on a trampoline, such as head and tooth injuries, broken arms and legs, occur primarily when a trampoline is used by several people at the same time or when safety devices such as a surrounding safety net are missing. The risk of spinal injuries arises primarily from attempting somersaults and flips. For these reasons, the American Academy of Pediatrics generally advises against using trampolines at home.

The development of osteochondrosis dissecans on the knee is unusually often preceded by intensive use of the trampoline by children and adolescents (with open growth plates ). In addition, there is usually evidence of an insufficient supply of vitamin D3 .

Web links

Commons : Trampolines  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Trampoline  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations


  1. "Springless" trampolines reduce the risk of accidents
  2. Fitness trampoline - ideal for young and old - February 19, 2016. Retrieved July 16, 2017 .
  3. Floor trampoline - Inground trampoline - July 23, 2020, accessed on July 23, 2020 .
  4. Trampoline halls overview at
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