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SATURDAY 29 DECEMBER, 2007 | RSS Feed

Trampoline Buyer's Guide

by Kiddie Toys | post a comment

Before purchasing a trampoline, a buyer must decide on size, shape, and budget. Trampolines can be dangerous if not properly used, so the location where trampoline will be placed for safety reasons should also thought through before deciding on the size and the model.

Size of trampolines range from 8ft in diameter to 16ft. The most popular sizes are 10ft trampolines (20%), 12ft trampolines (30%) and 14ft trampolines (35%) with mini and other size trampolines making up the rest (15%). Trampolines come in various shapes: rectangular, octagon, square and circle. Of the four shapes, the rectangular shape offers the most safety whereas circular offers the least safety although circular trampolines are most popular. Please read Trampoline Shapes & Safety article for details.

Before deciding on the size of trampoline, ask yourself how many people will be on a trampoline at a time. A 10 ft trampoline would be suitable for a single teenager, or two small children and occasional use by a single adult. A 12ft trampoline would be suitable for a couple of children, and regular use by adults. A 14ft trampoline would allow regular use by two or more children and adults. The larger trampolines allow more maximum weight.

As a potential trampoline buyer, you should carefully consider the space available in your backyard. A 12ft trampoline on the ground will look considerably bigger when it is assembled an on the 3ft above ground. Make sure you have at least 3ft extra space all around the trampoline so there is safe landing space if children do topple off from the trampoline. So, if you are looking for a 12ft trampoline, you will need a space of approximately 18ft diameter with no overhanging branches where the trampoline can stand.

Trampolines can cause injury if not used properly. Try avoiding cheap nylon trampolines, and purchase a quality trampoline with safety nets and safety mats (beds). Here are a few things to consider when choosing the materials.

1. Pick a trampoline with a mat that is made out polypropelene. Polypropelene mats are more durable, weather resistant and do not warp if left outdoor. Extensive exposure to sun will not harm polypropelene mats as opposed to nylon mats.

2. Pick a trampoline with prefitted, triple-tiered and thick springs. Prefitted springs stay tighter and don't fall off when you travel. Tripple-tiered springs give a more even bounce than the single-tiered springs. Replacing a single-tiered spring with triple-tiered spring at a later time will not have the same effect.

3. Look for polymer plastic leg tip that won't scratch the floors. Polymer typically holds up for years as compared to rubber tips which may crack after a year.

4. Decide on folding vs. non-folding model. In general, folding and non-folding models are equally stable. The quality of rebounder is determined by the type of springs, the mat, the stitching, the welding, and the finishing. In recent years, folding models are more popular as they are more portable. If you do decide to get a folding model, try getting the one with C-channel locking over the hindges.

5. Pick a trampoline with a stable 6 leg design. A cheaper 4 leg models are known to topple over. Also, unscrewable legs makes it easier to store during off season.





Rebounding Exercises

by Kiddie Toys | post a comment

When we were kids, we used to jump up and down the bed, sofa, and anything we can imagine. Kids love bouncing, and it's a great workout. With advancement in technology, we have the things called trampolines and inflatable bouncers that will allow kids to bounce without breaking things around the house. Excercising on a mini trampoline will bring back your childhood memories. The bouncing exercise, also called rebounding, is gentle on the joints and gives you a good body workout. Trampolines are a fun way to workout.

Bouncing on a mini trampoline is called rebounding. Unlike regular trampolining, the aim isn't to bounce high or perform gymnastic tricks. Rebounding is a series of small, controlled bouncing movements on a mini trampoline.

If you haven't bounced in a while, it will take you some time to get used to bouncing on a mini trampoline. Be sure to wear something comfortable and non-sliping shoes. Start out with warm-ups (health bouncing), and rebound at a slow-to-moderate pace for a few days until you get used to the mini trampoline and trampoline exercises. Also, limit yourself to a few minutes of exercises at a time to allow your body to get used to trampoline exercise.

There are several types of trampoline exercises: aerobic and jassercise to name a couple. Doing aerobics on trampoline will not only give the benefits of solid aerobic exercise but also offer you fun while exercising. Another form of trampoline exercise is combining different types of workouts such as jazzercise. Dancing on a trampoline was once popular and still very widely practices trampoline exercise. You may also try stiff and hard-core workouts on a mini trampoline. This form of trampoline exercise involves a series of different jump heights, movements of different body parts and twists and turns of the body while constantly keeping a steady jump on a trampoline. You may also apply different jump patterns (i.e. health bounce, aerobic hop, and power/advanced jump) to obtain workout on different body parts. Health bouncing is a warm up jumps that cat be used to warm up your body before main trampoline exercise begins, and also used to cool down from power jumps. The aerobic hop is a mid-strength jumps that will get you ready for hard-core exercise. The power jumps are more strenuous workouts that are used in strength training and mulscle building.

Listed below are a few rebounding exercises that you can try at home.

  • Health Bouncing: Basic walk on a trampoline is a good warm-up and cool-down exercises. Stand in the center of the mini trampoline with feet slightly appart. This is a basic starting stance for all rebounding exercises. From basic starting stance, lift your hills alternately and do not lift your toes off the trampoline. Swing your arms as if you're walking.
  • Aerobic Hop: Basic bounce and basic jog are two forms of exercise that are fun and raise your heart rate. (Basic bounce) From basic starting stance, lightly bounce without lifting your feet off the trampoline. If necessary, use a balance bar or wall to help balance yourself. As you're more comfortable with bouncing, lift your feet off the trampoline and slowly increase the height as you feel more comfortable. (Basic Jog) From basic starting stance, lift each foot an inch or two off the trampoline alternately. Swing your arms as if you're jogging.
  • Advanced Bouncing: (Heel-Toe bounce) From basic starting stance, bring your feet close together. While bouncing, bring your left foot forward and touch your heel to the surface and raise your left arm up in front of you. Repeat this for the right foot. (Jumping Jack Bounce) From basic starting stance, bounce up, spread your feet apart and bring your hands over your head -- much like jumping jack on the hard surface. To make exercise more challenging, go faster and bounce higher.





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