The 10 Best Trampolines
This wiki has been updated 33 times since it was first published in May of 2015. It turns out bouncing up and down actually offers a slew of health benefits, especially if you can do so without putting too much stress on your knees. So, whether you're looking for a new way to burn a few calories and stay fit or simply for a fun activity for you and your kids, one of these trampolines, ranked by safety features, durability, and size, may be just what you need. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
April 29, 2020:
There is no doubt trampolines can be fun and a great way to exercise, but they should also be safe too, so we focused on models that have smart features to reduce any possibility of injury. We have included both indoor and outdoor choices in our recommendations, and options suited for adults and children.
With a 375-pound capacity and an incorporated basketball hoop, the Merax 15-Foot will be tons of fun for the whole family. We also like the addition of a ladder for easy mounting, which is something that, surprisingly, many others don't have. Another large, outdoor option that is easy to clamber aboard is the Berg Inground Champion. While being set into the ground can make installation rather laborious, it certainly makes it simple to walk right onto it. Some may also find this makes it less of an eyesore in the backyard. Plus, users won't be flying so high into the air when jumping on it, so if someone manages to bounce off despite the strong safety net, there is less chance of getting hurt.
If you like the idea of having a model with an incorporated basketball hoop, but simply don't have room for a 15-foot model in your yard, you may want to consider the Skywalker Trampolines 8-Foot Jump N’ Dunk instead. This one has a low 175-pound weight capacity though, so it wouldn't be suitable for the adults in the family. Another option that is only suited to the little ones in the brood, specifically those 10 years old or under, is the Little Tikes 641664M.
Those looking for an indoor model to burn some extra calories will be well served by the Stamina InTone Plus, MXL Maximus Life Pro, JumpSport Fitness 370, or Stamina InTone Oval Jogger. And for the toddlers, the Galt Nursery 1004471. We think readers will appreciate the affordability of the Stamina InTone Plus, which even comes with resistance bands for the low price. Though slightly more expensive, the Stamina InTone Oval Jogger is also a smart, budget-friendly option, and this one has the benefit of an oval shape that offers a bit more foot placement versatility. Those with limited storage space in their home may like the MXL Maximus Life Pro, which folds up, while those who prefer the ability to customize their bounce will want to look to the JumpSport Fitness 370, which offers an adjustable tension.
Skywalker Trampolines STRC1400 The Skywalker STRC1400 sports an 8 by 14-foot rectangular design that makes it an ideal choice for competitive jumping and acrobatics. Unlike with circular models, the springs on this one move at different rates, which gives the jumper better control over the height and landings. It utilizes upright T-brackets on the frame that strengthens each of its leg joints and greatly reduces the chance of frame twisting. skywalkertrampolines.com
Springfree Trampoline Jumbo Square S155 Springfree isn't just the name of the company, but it also describes the design of the Jumbo Square S155. Thanks to smart engineering, it makes use of every inch of its size for jumping, so unlike traditional models that provide one to two feet less rebounding space than the overall size, this one allows for edge to edge use. springfreetrampoline.com
Find The Right Trampoline
These sometimes come with extra features such as attached fitness bands or counters to track your jumps.
When you think of a trampoline, you might think of the basic springloaded mat surrounded by safety nets in your neighbor's back yard. While one of their primary uses is recreation, they can also be used for exercise and the competitive gymnastics sport known as trampolining.
You will run into a few options for trampolines when you're in the market. If your goal is physical fitness, a small, indoor trampoline is your best bet. These sometimes come with extra features such as attached fitness bands or counters to track your jumps.
If you're looking for a recreational trampoline, you are probably going to look at the large outdoor models. These are often sold with optional springs. Many trampolines still use the metal springs that attach the mat to the frame. Some of the smaller recreational trampolines use a low impact bungee system.
Still other trampolines use the Springfree Trampoline system. This is a system that uses glass-reinforced plastic rods in place of metal springs. It is considered safer because the trampoline is lower to the ground than traditional trampolines, and there is less risk of getting pinched in the springs.
The Springfree trampoline also uses a net with flexible rods that move with the jumper and removes the risk of getting injured on the steel bars that hold up safety nets on traditional trampolines.
Make sure you don't confuse the trampolines that use a bungee spring system with an actual bungee trampoline. This type of trampoline is usually found at amusement parks. It is a large trampoline with surrounding bungee cords that allows children and some adults to perform air acrobatics. Some of these trampolines are accompanied by rock climbing walls or zip lines for even more fun.
If you are planning to buy a trampoline, you need to adhere to all of the recommended safety precautions to ensure that everyone has fun and no one gets hurt. Trampolines are considered by many child safety experts to be dangerous, and many recommend that you not use one at all.
But others, like us, believe that if you follow recommended safety protocols, you and your kids can have a great time.
If any part of the trampoline is worn or damaged, repair or replace it as soon as possible.
First, make sure that the trampoline is properly assembled and placed on level ground. It should remain sturdy when it is used so there is minimal risk of tipping during jumping.
Second, jumpers should always be supervised by an adult. Don't let the kids run outside and jump without you watching. That is how accidents happen. If you're watching (and even participating in) the fun, it exponentially reduces injury risks.
Third, only allow one person on the trampoline at a time. The kids will protest, but this needs to be a hard and fast rule. The less people on the trampoline at one time, the less risk there is of injury and collaborative shenanigans.
Fourth, (and this is a tough one) make a no sommersaults rule. Yes, we know, it's hard to jump on a trampoline and not want to perform some spectacular acrobatics. But many injuries occur when children are trying to show off their flipping skills.
Finally, check all of the protective equipment (padding, safety net, etc) is in good condition. If any part of the trampoline is worn or damaged, repair or replace it as soon as possible.
If all of these safety rules are followed, trampolines can be a great recreational activity and fun for the whole family.
A Brief History of the Trampoline
The Trampoline was invented by NCAA gymnast, George Nissen, in 1934. He was inspired by circus trapeze artists using their safety nets to bounce back and do additional tricks to entertain their audience. He decided that this concept would be an excellent training tool for gymnasts.
Nissen marketed the trampoline for public sale along with his coach, Larry Griswold. He used gymnastic performances to promote sales and was moderately successful.
During World War II, trampolines were even used to train pilots and navigators.
Prior to the official invention of the trampoline, makeshift trampolines were being used for many years. There is evidence of the Inuit people using walrus skin to toss people into the air. It also seems that this happened in Europe using blankets, but it was not for recreation. It seems that it was used as a form of mob punishment.
In 1887, springed nets were invented by firemen so they could rescue people jumping out of burning buildings. During World War II, trampolines were even used to train pilots and navigators. This eventually evolved into using trampolines to train astronauts for space travel.
Many circus performers and acrobats used "bouncing beds" and their safety nets to spring off and perform many new tricks. All of these things preceded the invention of the modern trampoline using canvas and metal springs. This history and the invention of the modern trampoline combined to create the sport of Trampolining.