Why purchase a trampoline?
- Trampolines are exciting
- To create a backyard playground
- To add another fun recreational item
- To train an amateur or professional gymnast
- Everyone loves a trampoline, particularly children
- To build muscle memory - trampolines help perfect flips & other aerial maneuvers
- Trampolines are great sources of exercise, draining energy while you & your kids have fun
A Definition of Trampolines
A trampoline is a recreational or competitive item used to bounce, spring and jump higher than one could on a regular surface. They are made by stretching a piece of fabric, typically canvas, vinyl, polypropylene or some other synthetic material, with coiled springs attached to a frame composed of steel or aluminum. Typical trampolines found in the backyard of homes are used for recreation, exercise and fun, purchased by parents for their children, and come in a variety of forms, sizes and shapes. Trampolines are currently used in a variety of competitive sports as well, the most popular being Trampolining, incorporated into the Olympic Games in 2000. Other competitive sports that utilize trampolines are Bossaball, a form of volleyball and Slamball, a form of high-flying basketball. The bounce or spring effect of a trampoline is created by both the coiled springs (mostly) and the trampoline bed or bounce mat, the fabric on which an individual jumps.
The History of Trampolines
The first recorded trampoline was constructed by University of Iowa gymnasts Larry Griswold and George Nissen in 1936. Griswold and Nissen (pictured right is Nissen jumping on his invention with a kangaroo) developed the trampoline as a safe way for gymnasts to practice flips and other aerial maneuvers.
The pair had been looking for a springboard type surface on which to practice techniques and had observed trapeze artists utilizing nets in their performances. They experimented with the net concept, stretching it over an iron frame. But when they added coiled springs held by grommets in the fabric and the iron frame they noticed they could jump higher, with more spring and bounce.
Nissen called the new item a trampoline, from the Spanish word trampolín, which means diving board. In the beginning it was used mostly by tumblers like Griswold. But the trampoline caught on as more than a tumbling practice item; by 1942 the Griswold-Nissen Trampoline & Tumbling Company was formed to offer commercial trampolines. By 1945 Griswold had sold out of the company due to a successful entertainment career, but Nissen continued and promoted the trampoline to the United States military during World War II, when it was used to train pilots and navigators.
Nissen trademarked the term trampoline, which was used for what he called “rebound tumbling”. Nissen envisioned his trampoline being used in a variety of ways, from training and exercise to new sports played with small teams. Nissen continued in business until the early 1980’s, the word trampoline becoming synonymous with all rebounding apparatus, which by this time was constructed by a variety of manufacturers. His design is still found in many backyards in America, enjoyed by millions every day.
While the first recorded trampoline was built and developed by Nissen and Griswold, the concept of a trampoline has been used by various societies throughout history. American firefighters used a patented invention in the late 1800’s to catch people jumping from burning factories and other buildings that resemble our modern day trampolines.
Earlier examples exist in cultures across the globe, from the Inuit’s tradition of tossing each other for fun on walrus skins, to the European tradition of tossing minor criminals and moral miscreants on blankets as a form of mob justice. Other examples from before Nissen and Griswold include “bouncing beds” used by acrobats, the stretched nets utilized by trapeze artists mentioned above and other trampoline-like devices used by vaudeville, circus and other stage performers for comedic and dramatic purposes.
Sizes of Trampolines
Mini Trampolines – Built for the little ones in your family, these models are simple to move and small, perfect for indoor use in a playroom or basement.
8’ Trampolines – Small enough to be easily moved around your backyard, an 8’ trampoline offers a spacious jumping mat for enhanced fun.
12’ Trampolines – A perfect trampoline if you have an aspiring acrobat; the jumping force created by these models will train any competitive jumper.
13’ Trampolines – A great choice if there are multiple children or gymnasts in your family who like to jump and have fun or are training for competition.
14’ Trampolines – Only for the serious trampoline owner, these models over massive jumping mats for multiple users and improved jumping heights.
Brands of Trampolines
AlleyOop Sports – A great choice if there’s multiple acrobats in the family, AlleyOop offers rectangular and round models with trampoline mats that utilize a DoubleBounce system built for multiple users. The included enclosures will safely hold jumpers in the jumping zone.
JumpSport – This manufacturer offers standard round trampolines, perfect for any outdoor space. Economic, basic and simple, JumpSport focuses on offering a superior jumping mat with high-grade stitching and a powder-coated frame for a longer life in your backyard.
Pure Global – A manufacturer of everything from brightly colored children trampolines small enough to be placed in a playroom, to massive 14’ trampolines built for the backyard with shock absorbing padded poles and enclosures, Pure Global has every bouncing need covered.
Did You Know?Trampolining is a competitive sport approved for Olympic competition in 2000; trampolines used for professional & competitive jumping can bounce an athlete up to 33 feet into the air.
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For Ages 4+
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10' x 17' Model
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