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Shopping Guide for Best Mini Trampolines

Trampolining is an excellent workout. In fact, the folks at NASA announced it's their exercise of choice for astronauts, as it's more effective than jogging, and it puts less pressure on the joints. However, not many of us have the space or the budget for a full-sized trampoline, which is why mini trampolines (also known as "rebounders") are must-have pieces of exercise equipment. The trouble is, selecting a mini trampoline is easier said than done. With so many options on the market, finding the best one to suit your individual requirements can be difficult.

If you're feeling confused about your options, you're in the right place. We at BestReviews are dedicated to helping you, the consumer, find your perfect products. We test items in our labs, consult experts, and talk to existing customers — all so we can create fair and thorough reviews that aid you in making tricky purchasing decisions. When you're ready to buy, scroll up to the product matrix above, where you'll find our top five mini trampolines. But first, read on for our full guide to rebounders and how to pick the right one for you.

It's easy to work full muscle groups on a mini trampoline as they move through their full range of motion while you're bouncing.

Benefits of Using a Mini Trampoline

First things first: why do you need a mini trampoline, and what are the benefits of using one?

  • Trampolining is an excellent cardiovascular exercise, but it also helps you build muscle.

  • Working out on a trampoline is up to 68% more effective than running for the same amount of time.

  • Trampolining is a low-impact exercise, so it's easier on your joints.

  • Working out on a trampoline helps build bone density — which is why NASA loves it for  returning astronauts.

  • Some experts claim trampolining stimulates the lymphatic system, which may increase immune function.

  • You'll improve your balance if you use a trampoline regularly.

  • Bouncing on a mini trampoline is just plain fun compared to many other forms of exercise!

Product in Depth

Product in Depth

JumpSport Fitness Model 250

Construction

The Fitness Trampoline 250's frame is constructed from 16 gauge steel and comes with a lifetime warranty. The mat is made from an incredibly strong woven material called Permatron, and the elastic strapping (called EnduroLast 2) is rated to handle over two million bounces. The exposed ends of the bungee-like elastic straps are covered by a series of protective nylon "petals." These petals allow users to step out of the main bounce area occasionally without risking injury.

Considerations for Selecting a Mini Trampoline

Considerations

Size

The majority of rebounders measure between 36” and 40" — roughly three feet — across. You can occasionally find slightly larger or smaller models, however.

Think about how much room you have to jump in, as well as how much space you have in which to store your mini trampoline.

EXPERT TIP

Remember, the size advertised is the diameter of the full trampoline — the actual area in which you have to bounce will be significantly smaller.


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Considerations

Frame

Select a mini trampoline with a sturdy frame.

You might save money initially by selecting a model with a less well-constructed frame, but it's likely to be false economy, as the frame may eventually bend with frequent use.

Most mini trampolines have frames made from steel, but pay attention to the gauge. Thicker steel is obviously stronger than thinner steel, and this can make a huge difference in how sturdy your rebounder is.

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BestReviews
Considerations

Mat

The mat is the part of the trampoline on which you jump. Pay attention to the material the mat is made from.

Lesser models tend to have mats made from nylon, plastic, or canvas, whereas higher-end models use polypropylene or Permatron.

Higher quality mat materials give you more bounce, and are more comfortable on your feet, meaning you can jump barefoot rather than in shoes, if you prefer.

Product in Depth

Product in Depth

Pure Fun 38-Inch Mini

Design

Comparable budget-priced mini trampolines are often constructed with aluminum, but the Pure Fun 9002MT's frame uses thin-gauge steel. This gives the unit more strength in the long run. The weight of the user is distributed across five legs that are permanently attached to the bottom of the frame. The exposed steel springs are covered with an elastic apron which protects the user from injuries caused by missteps. This is especially helpful for younger users, who view the mini trampoline more as a recreational bouncer than a piece of exercise equipment.

Considerations

Springs vs. Bungee Cords

Some mini trampolines have springs which connect the mat to the frame, and others use elastic bungee cords. There's some debate about which is better, but it seems ultimately, it just depends what you want from your rebounder.

Those with springs offer a higher bounce than those with bungee cords, but they're slightly harder on the joints.

Bungee cords shouldn’t need replacing (unless they break), but some mini trampolines need their springs replaced every couple of years or so.

DID YOU KNOW?

A combination of mat quality and spring quality determines how good a bounce you get from your mini trampoline.

Considerations

Stability Bar

A stability bar is a bar for the user to hold onto; it fits to each side of the frame of a rebounder.

Some types of exercise require a stability bar to be performed safely, but some people like to use a stability bar, anyway, especially if they're new to rebounding or nervous about falling off.

Product in Depth

Product in Depth

Urban Rebounder w/Workout DVD & Stabilizing Bar

Performance

The Urban Rebounder's stated weight capacity is a substantial 300 pounds, but we urge heavier users to use caution. Some customers have reported sudden mechanical failures when the model is pushed to its limits. The use of metal springs instead of elastic straps does add a noise factor to the mix, but the noise is negligible when the Urban Rebounder is used as a piece of exercise equipment instead of a recreational bouncer.

Mini Trampoline Prices

How much should you expect to pay for a mini trampoline? The cost varies, depending on quality and features.

  • Basic mini trampolines can cost as little as $60 to $100. Most models are fine for occasional use, but are unlikely to stand up to rigorous, regular use.

  • Mid-range mini trampolines cost around $100 to $200. You can find some excellent options in this range, sturdy and durable enough for your average user.

  • High-end mini trampolines cost roughly $200 to $400. If you're serious about rebounding, a high-end mini trampoline will be extremely durable and designed for increased stability.

EXPERT TIP

If you plan on using your mini trampoline regularly, we recommend going to the high end of your budget, as you'll get a more durable, long-lasting product.


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Tips

The following tips will help you get to terms with your new mini trampoline, and help you start bouncing like a pro in no time.

  • You can perform a range of different exercises on a mini trampoline — you don't just bounce up and down. For those new to rebounding, it may be advisable to buy an exercise DVD or book, or look for instructional videos online.

  • Keep a soft bend in your knees as you bounce on your mini trampoline, to avoid jarring them.

  • Don't use your mini trampoline too soon after eating, or the motion could make your feel nauseated.

  • Try to keep your bounces fairly controlled, as you could hurt yourself if you fall off or land on the springs.

Product in Depth

Product in Depth

Stamina 36-Inch Folding

Durability

The Stamina offers one feature that people living with limited floor space will appreciate. The entire unit can be disassembled and stored in manageable sections. The five legs are easily removed with the owner's hand power, and the cover slips off like a fitted sheet. The main frame collapses once a few pins are removed, and the mat and elastic bands slip off once the tension is released. All of these individual pieces can be stored in a single drawer or under the bed between exercise sessions.

  • A mini trampoline with padding or a cover over the springs will help prevent injuries when working out.

  • Since mini trampoline workouts help increase bone density, it's an excellent exercise for anyone who may be at increased risk of osteoporosis later in life.

  • If you've suffered any kind of muscular or skeletal injury, always consult your doctor before embarking on a new mini trampoline exercise regimen.

  • Most mini trampolines don't come with a stability bar as standard, but you should be able to purchase one separately.

  • If you find yourself getting bored while you exercise, try setting your mini trampoline up in front of the TV.

Some mini trampolines have 2-, 3-, or 4-ply mats. These tend to offer more comfort and stability, and less sag, which means you can bounce more evenly, and you’re less likely to be thrown off balance.

FAQ

Q. Do mini trampolines have a weight limit?

A. Yes, mini trampolines do have a weight limit, usually between 200 and 300 lbs. This varies between different makes and models of mini trampoline, however, so always check the product specifications before use to ensure you don't exceed the maximum weight limit.

Q. Can I use a mini trampoline if I've suffered an injury that prevents me from doing high-impact exercise?

A. While you should definitely check with a healthcare professional first, many people who can't engage in high-impact exercise — such as running, tennis, or dance-based aerobics — find they're able to exercise on a mini trampoline, as it doesn't put too much stress on their joints.

Q. Can I fold my mini trampoline for storage when not in use?

A. Not all mini trampolines fold up, but some do. This is handy if you don't have a space where your rebounder can be out all the time.

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