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Is a Mini Trampoline Good for Bad Knees?

by
author image Dan Harriman
Dan Harriman began writing professionally in 2009 and has a varied background in marketing, ranging from sports management to music promotion. Harriman holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism with an emphasis on strategic communications from the University of Kansas and earned the International Advertising Association's diploma in marketing communications.
Is a Mini Trampoline Good for Bad Knees?
Jumping on a mini trampoline is a good alternative to high-impact exercises. Photo Credit Dangubic/iStock/Getty Images

You may be limited from doing certain types of exercises and fitness activities if you have knee problems. High-impact sports, such as soccer, basketball and distance running, and exercises that place a lot of strain on the knee joints, such as leg squats, can take a toll on your knees. Incorporate low-impact exercises into your workouts, such as jumping on a mini trampoline, to reduce the risk of developing chronic knee problems.

High-Impact Exercise

High-impact exercise can be your knees' worst enemy. The consistent jarring your joints must endure during certain types of physical activities can result in various knee problems, including the inflammation of tendons and ligaments -- a condition known as bursitis. Jumping on a mini-trampoline may appear to be high-impact, but is considered to be low-impact plyometrics. As long as your knee problems are not debilitating, jumping on a mini trampoline is a suitable exercise for someone with bad knees.

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Mini Trampoline Benefits

Exercising on a mini trampoline has certain advantages. Compared to a regulation-size trampoline, a mini trampoline reduces the amount of gravitational pull exerted on your body as you rebound, which effectively cuts down on the strain that is placed on your knees. The size of a mini trampoline's rebounding surface -- generally 3 feet in diameter -- is much smaller than traditional trampolines and, thereby, limits how high you can jump. The mini trampoline's ability to limit rebounding height, combined with the elasticity of the rebounding surface, makes jumping on a mini trampoline a relatively safe type of exercise if you have knee problems.

Mini-Trampoline Exercises

You can perform a variety of calisthenic-style exercises on a mini trampoline. Some traditional exercises include walking and jogging in place. To do these, simply walk or jog in the center of the mini trampoline's rebounding surface. When walking in place, lift your knees up until your thighs are nearly parallel to the ground. Swing your arms up in a controlled motion. Other common trampoline exercises include jumping jacks and twists, during which you bring your right knee and left elbow -- and vice versa -- close together as you lightly jump in a steady rhythm.

Trampoline Safety

Even though exercising on a mini trampoline in considered to be safe if you have knee problems, you must still take certain precautions. Most importantly, wear appropriate athletic shoes when rebounding on a trampoline. Athletic shoes provide stability and extra cushioning that absorb impact. Exercise at a low to moderate intensity on a trampoline to regulate the amount of strain that is placed on your knee. If you are new to mini trampoline exercising, don't overexert yourself during the first few workouts. Limit your sessions to 20 minutes. This allows your body, in particular your knees, to acclimate to this new style of fitness.

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