There exist increasing numbers of trampoline parks and trampoline filled recreational facilities in almost every neighborhood. And it is for a good reason, which is not only for child play. This low impact activity is gaining popularity due to its wide number of benefits to adults and kids alike.
Improving balance, upping your heart rate, boosting cardio, and being gentler on your joints than pounding your feet on the pavement are some of the accrued benefits. While these beneficial impacts are well known, what isn’t known is whether jumping on a trampoline is a sport or not.
Is jumping on a trampoline considered as sports? Is it a fun activity or is it a blend of the two? Well, it is an intriguing activity often associated with fun and kids, but adults are catching up on the thrill. In today’s post, I will be exploring the relationship between trampoline and sports.
Relationship between Trampoline and Sports
1.Trampolining is an Olympic Sports
The first connection trampolining has to real sports is that it is one of the sports activities at the Olympics. Introduced in 2000, trampolining is one of the 7 disciplines of gymnastics. Both men and women take part in the sports in a non-competitive yet fun environment.
More specifically, the Olympics version of trampoline involves individual performances in tumbling, double-mini, and synchronized trampolining. Moreover, as a result of the inclusion of trampoline in these world events, its popularity has continued to soar over the past 10 years or so.
Nowadays, trampolining takes two forms. There is the free play that takes place in your backyard and the structured trampoline play that goes in many of the gymnastic centers around.
At the Olympics, the trampoline is a crazy, fun sport to watch, particularly if you are an enthusiast. Because of the numerous events during these games, watching all of them is basically impossible. With the more popular events such as gymnastics, swimming, and athletics taking up most of the airtime, trampolining tends to fly under the radar.
Therefore, it is one of the fun events that many people aren’t familiar with. When you get a chance during the next summer Olympics games in Tokyo in 2022, you might want to check out how much fun there is to have in trampolining.
- Tricks and More Flips
The high jumps, intricate flips, and impressive airtime make for jaw-dropping sports events. Judgment on one’s performance is based on the difficulty of the executed flip as well the total airtime.
In both 2012 and 2018 Olympics gold, Canadian Rosie MacLennan won gold under the females’ category. For the males, Chinas Fantao emerged the gold medalist in 2018. Despite the amount of fun, this sport is dangerous. Any wrong bounce could derail an athlete’s routine. Nevertheless, sufficient padding is provided to ensure there are no risks of injuries in case of a bad fall. And if you an amateur, kindly leave allow only the pros to try the action.
2.Trampoline Is Used for Cross-Training by Other Sports Athletes
If you thought a trampoline as only good for a fun day at the park with the kids, then think again. By now, we are all aware of the immense benefits of trampolining, but what you probably don’t know is that because of the boon derived from it, trampolines are great cross training tools.
- Off-season Cross Training
If you are a budding athlete, then chances are that you will be directed towards trampolining during the off-season to keep you in shape. Specifically, sports people such as divers, gymnasts, aerial skiers as well as snowboarders do benefit a great deal from trampolines.
Apart from fine-tuning their techniques, these athletes get to perform some of the tricks on a trampoline without risks of injuries. In fact, it is common to find trampolinists swapping sports because the skill sets required normally bear a close similarity with those on the trampoline.
- Acrobats Cross-Training
For athletes looking to train on more daring acrobatic feats, a trampoline provides a stable environment devoid of unpredictability apart from the gym. You can then rehearse the skills over and over again until you perfect the skills, without worrying about injuries.
Also, trampolines are available throughout the year. It is not subject to weather conditions that tend to inhibit your training. During off-season when most training facilities are either inaccessible or unavailable, trampolines in your own backyard offer a great rescue.
- Gymnasts Cross-Training
Another group of athletes who benefit from cross training with trampolines is gymnasts who benefit from the extra height afforded to perform stunts. Whenever one bounces off a trampoline, the associated “lift off” normally creates a sense of weightlessness. This is normally critical for the riskiest stunts.
The greater the springing action that you get, the more time you have for completing the gymnastics motions. This provision is a vital aspect, more so for learning of new stunts or even fine-tuning the already existing techniques.
- Divers Cross-Training
Even divers are not spared from this relationship between trampoline and sports. Trampolining training for divers is gaining popularity over the years. Trampolines offer basic training equipment for divers, especially those starting out the sports.
Trampolines are used to teach basic diving skills such as leg and arms positioning or the approaching methods. These benefits notwithstanding, you should not attempt a direct dive onto the surface of a trampoline.
Benefits of Cross Training with Trampolines
Trampolines provide a broad spectrum of benefits to athletes with cross training needs. They eliminate the risks of injuries posed by hard surfaces such as ski slopes covered with ice, cement parks, hard surface paths, and tumultuous waves.
The soft landing decreases chances of painful lands and reduced joint impacts. Additionally, an athlete develops improved balance, core muscle strength, coordination, muscle control, motor skills, timing, and rhythm. These skills are minimum requirements for perfecting your athletic prowess.
3.Trampolining is used in Wall Running Sports
Wall running using trampolines lined into a wall is like no traditional trampolining you have experienced before. It feels like you are indeed on a trampoline, but is a much cooler extreme sports. In this sport, the participants use platforms and walls placed near a trampoline bed for the performance of the tricks.
The most basic move during a wall running sports is the backdrop onto a trampoline, then during the bounce, your feet touch the wall. After this movement, there is an endless range of possible movements an acrobat can deploy out of their tricks books.
Since you are bouncing off on the trampoline then stepping on the wall, you can forcefully initiate turns and twists. As a result, the vertical speeds can be transferred into a host of other rotational motions in the arms and legs.
The combination of wall and trampoline bouncing surfaces add to the energy levels. This energy can then be transferred into flips and flicks in the course of a bounce.
4.Trampolining and Sports Increases Anthropometric Measures
There is no better aspect where trampoline and sports are related than in improving anthropometric measures. Various studies show that trampolines contribute to increased fitness levels in athletes, just like sports.
For any athlete, physical fitness makes you more adaptive to your surrounding and enables you to perform your daily activities. Better anthropometric measures also have a direct impact on the quality of life for not only athletes but also lay people.
From the studies, it is evident that motor capabilities are improved by playing on a trampoline. Such motor abilities include vertical jumping and long jumping power. These skills are imperative for certain athletics performance.
Another study shows that competitive trampolining has a great influence on trabecular bone size, strength, and structure. As a gymnastic sport, these benefits are expected, just like in any other sports. The increase in bone mass is essential in the prevention of osteoporosis and increasing oxygen uptake in children.
5.Trampolining Demands Safety
Another correlation between trampolining and other sports activities is the level of safety required. Despite the comfortable nature of trampolines, there are still safety concerns that must be adhered to more so if the trampoline is for kids.
The risks are especially high in children with a study finding that in 2009 alone, there were some 100,000 trampoline-related injuries in children. Botched summersaults are the biggest culprits to these injuries. In extreme cases, the vertical flips cause permanent spine injuries.
There is, therefore, an increased need for safety measures, more so where children are involved. Supervision at all times is the first step in ensuring an injury-free trampolining session. Even for adults, these safety measures have to be put in place.
Possible safety rules you can impose are:
- Limit the number of children trampolining at a time
- Cover the trampoline springs
- Discourage flips and summersaults for children (depending on skills levels)
- The safety net should be installed around the trampoline
- The trampoline installation should be done on level ground
- An adult supervision should be provided throughout
When played correctly, a trampoline provides virtually all the benefits an actual outdoor sports activity offers. Trampolining is, in effect, not just a fun recreational activity. As from 2000, trampolining has been an Olympic game, entertaining those in attendance with the mesmerizing flips, summersaults, mid-air tricks, and the jaw-dropping air time.
If you were wondering if a trampoline was in any way related to sports, then there you have it. These activities are related in numerous ways than one would think of. If you love trampolining, continue doing so as it’s an amazing sport with lots of accrued health and physical benefits. Also, you never know, you might do your country proud in Tokyo 2022.